By Ken Paxton
Like last year, the Texas Speaker of the House provided each Representative a plain, clear-glass ornament and requested us to have the ornaments decorated in a manner that represents our districts. The ornaments from the 150 House districts in Texas will adorn the Christmas tree at the Capitol building in Austin until January 4, 2011.
This year, I commissioned Natalie Clark, a fifth-grade student at Legacy Christian Academy in Frisco, to create the ornament for my district. Natalie was recommended by her teachers, Mrs. Dyer and Mrs. Mayberry. I asked Natalie to use her creativity to illustrate the true, historical meaning of Christmas. She decorated the ornament with a cross to represent Jesus Christ and flowers to represent all people. She was inspired by a garden she had seen at Easter time.
Natalie’s favorite subject is, of course, art. She has loved to draw, paint and engage in creative activities since she was able to hold a crayon. Natalie was awarded a gold medal at the Association of Christian Schools International Art Festival in 2009 for drawing and in 2010 for painting.
Natalie is thrilled that she was given this special opportunity to represent the 70th district and glorify God with her artwork. She really enjoyed creating the ornament and is looking forward to visiting Austin to see the state Christmas tree decorated with ornaments from around Texas.
Glendy Valdez of Frisco, Texas, made the ornament for District 70 in 2009. These ornaments are seen and enjoyed by thousands of visitors who enter the Capitol during the holiday season, and every ornament helps showcase the diversity and grand history of Texas. The ornaments from 2009 and 2010 have been photographed and catalogued so that visitors to the House Chamber and House website will learn about each ornament’s story, and a permanent record of each year’s tree will be maintained. To view all of the ornaments on the Capitol Christmas Tree this year and for 2009, please visit http://www.house.state.tx.us/resources/holiday-ornaments/.