Our Jesse Tree

Our Jesse Tree

Today I posted a picture of our Jesse Tree on social media which led to a number of  text messages and comments asking about the tree. The process is so completely simple and underwhelming that I decided to snap a few pictures and throw together a quick how to.

My amazing husband has a list of talents and abilities that could quite possibly shut down the world wide web but handy man is nowhere on the list. Taking that into consideration, I try and choose projects that do not solicit his assistance. Make sense?

If you happen to have a handy husband then don’t let him read this post because he will balk at the elementary way I’ve gone about this little project and rightfully so. Not to mention, he can probably come up with something way better.

But for those of you that just want a simple task you can finish by yourself in a single afternoon…I’m your girl.

Supply List: two boards, 25 upholstery tacks, paint/stain, nails, hammer, Plaster of Paris, bucket, cloth, ribbon, ornaments

You’ll need to make a quick trip to Lowe’s for two pieces of wood. Our Jesse tree comes up to my hip and to have one approximately that height you will need two boards, one 17 inches long and the other 33. Not to mention, if you’re super kind to the guy in the wood section at Lowe’s he will totally cut the pieces to the dimensions you request.


Paint or stain the boards to your liking and nail them together in the shape of a cross.

Of all the steps, this next one is the most tedious. You’ll need to figure out the spacing of your upholstery tacks so that all 25 of them will fit nicely on your cross. It’s up to you how you place them so just go with whatever works.

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Pour the liquid plaster into the bucket and stand the cross up in the center of the plaster. I secured ours to our back porch deck with a rope so it would dry without me standing out there holding it for 8 hours.


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Your cross will more than likely be secure in the bucket once the plaster has dried but over the years ours has worked it’s way out so I just slide it back into the hole.

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Use the cloth to wrap around the bucket and secure it with the ribbon.

We are currently using this book to guide our family worship times but there are several more options out there. Before you order anything just make sure whatever you order lines up with what you believe because there are variations in the material based on the author.

I ordered our wooden ornaments many years ago from Etsy and couldn’t find the exact set but this one seems to be the same thing and even comes with a booklet explaining each ornament and the story that goes along with it.


We go through one story each day during the month of December with the hopes of our boys being able to recall the story, using the pictures on the ornaments as reminders. It has grown to be my favorite Christmas tradition and a great accountability tool for slowing down each day in December to retrace the genealogy of Jesus and behold the beauty of the Gospel.

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