The following is by editor Kara Fleck.
About a month ago, I shared with you guys some of my plans for homemade holidays gifts and what I hoped to get accomplished this year. I said I would check in with all of you and we could compare notes on our progress.
So, how are things going?
I didn’t finish everything on my list before my self-imposed deadline of the first week of December. But, that is okay, I knew that I wouldn’t. Anything that isn’t finished, I have set aside for now (perhaps to pick up again for Valentines day or the Easter baskets?)
Over the years, I have learned that is it better for me and my temperament to set things aside if they aren’t finished by the first week or two of December. This allows me to focus on the joy of the holiday season and not end up stressing out over projects and to-do lists.
While I didn’t get everything finished on my gift list, I did get quite a few things finished, in part because I shared the responsibility. My family helped me to create and make gifts and it is true what they say about many hands making light work.
Under our tree this year are handknit sweaters and hats, dolls, peg people, playsilks, wooden blocks, magic wands, felt covered barrettes, bean bags, and some story stones. And Jillian has been hard at work behind closed doors on a super-secret project yet to be revealed.
For our part, our family made 10 small handknit babydolls, swaddled in handkerchief sized playsilks. Jillian and I worked on them assembly line style and really enjoyed this time crafting together. We picked a simple, easy pattern that we knew we could duplicate in time to send off for the swap.
In exchange, we received 10 different kinds of small handmade toys for our kids’ stockings. It was a lot of fun and a great way to trade for a variety of special, handmade toys. Plus, the cost was only our raw materials and the postage.
I’ll definitely be keeping my open for swaps next holiday season.
Baking and Decorating
And, now that the gift making is done, my family and I can focus on some of the other things we love to do during the holiday season: decorating and celebrating!
Did you guys see Tsh’s post on Simple Mom Friday about homemade holiday decor? I think some string balls and a felted garland may be making an appearance at the Fleck house this season.
Baby doll for Lucy. You can see how I made her here.
Still working, creating, and searching for ideas for handmade gifts?
Here are a few links to help you on your way, if you’re needing some inspiration:
- Handmade Gift Guide from Christmas Your Way
- the FREE Patterns Gallery from Wee Folk Art
- Rhythm of the Home magazine, especially the Play and Celebrations sections
- Don’t knit? Don’t sew? Take a peek at my round-up of No Knit, No Sew Holiday Gifts
I’d love to hear from you! Let’s compare notes:
- What gifts have you had the most success in making?
- Anything you’ve learned that you would like to share?
- Anything questions or issues that have come up? Maybe a Simple Kids reader can help.
- Have you blogged about your progress? Share your link in the comments.
Where do you stand with your homemade gifts? Are you still in the thick of things? Finishing up? Already done?
This post was sponsored by Oak Meadow, offering creative, complete, and well-rounded homeschooling curriculum to families since 1975. You can see sample lessons and find out more about their curriculum and school at the Oak Meadow website.