Decorations lift spirits in many ways, as does nature. This exercise explores marrying both spirit boosters to create a gift that keeps on giving. 

Materials needed:

  • Pinecones
  • Spray paint (as many colors as you’d like to use)
  • Garbage bag
  • Gift tags (or small pieces of paper with holes punched in one end)
  • Twine (or ribbon with width small enough to fit through gift tag/paper hole)
  • Pen (or various color pens)
  • Large bowl or basket
  • 8×10 piece of paper


  1.  Gather pinecones from outside (perhaps at a park with fellow nature walkers)
  2. Find an outdoor space for spray painting and place garbage bag on ground to protect ground from paint. (You may have to cut it length wise for larger surface area coverage)
  3. Spray paint pinecones as you would like them to look. They might all be one color, or multi-colored or each a different color. You are the designer and there is no wrong way to design!)
  4. Collect the same amount of gift tags/paper pieces as there are pinecones. Write a positive wish or thought on each gift tag/piece of paper. You may say the same wish or vary it and make each one individual. Again this is designer’s choice!)
  5. Once the pinecones are dry, tie a “positive wish” to each pinecone.
  6. Arrange in a bowl or basket
  7.  Fold 8×10 piece of paper in half and on one side write, “Never received a Positive Pine Cone?!? Take one now and Happy Holidays!”
  8. Place basket in a “public” place (lobby of apartment building, staff lounge at work, etc…)
  9. Enjoy spreading joy!