Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Crafting

Did you know Christmas is less than 3 weeks away???  Are you prepared? I am...sort of.  Are your Christmas cards in the mail? My cards are addressed but not yet in the mail, maybe I will get to that tomorrow.  Are your gifts all purchased?  Are they wrapped and under the tree?  Do you have a tree yet?  It's so much to take in this time of year.  I have almost all of my Christmas shopping completed.  I still have the jumbo box of Crayola crayons to purchase, you know the one with the sharpener in the back, cuz that's the one every kid wants, and an Isabelle Bloom to buy (for those of you not from the QC, Isabelle Bloom's are statues made out of cement, one is enough for some people, but apparently not my mom), and a couple of cd's or movies.  Everything else is purchased... 
Everything else being materials for gifts I'm making.
Did I go crazy this year?  I think I must have because I decided I wanted to give mostly homemade gifts.  Fabulous idea, but I forgot to schedule the time to make these gifts into my life.  While I have been blessed to get quite a few of them actually completed, the majority are only partially finished.  And a couple are still just ideas floating around in my head, the materials are purchased, but I haven't even begun to create them into the masterpiece they are meant to be.
I honestly love the idea of giving all homemade gifts, but I need to remember to schedule them in my day.  I have time scheduled to go to the gym, to work, to spend time in the Bible, I even have quiet time scheduled.  I'm a planner, I like to see things written down on paper, so I not only have my calendar in my phone but I carry a paper planner as well.  OCD? Quite possibly.

So what am I making you ask?

Well let me tell you...

First I'm making coasters out of tile I got at Lowe's with each family's initial on them.  Quite simple and easy to do.  Of course I lost the list of families I was going to make them for, so...I am also giving them to Nate's teachers.  Originally this is why I was looking for ideas, original gifts for teachers, not just the World's Best Teacher coffee mug.  But I liked them so much and they are so cheap to produce that I decided to make them for quite a few families, but as I mentioned above, I lost the list and only remember 10, including the teachers. Hmmm...

Second I'm making homemade beef jerky.  I have made 2 batches so far, and I'm going to mix up another batch of marinade this afternoon to get 2 more batches done.  The fun thing with this one is I found out you can make beef jerky from ground beef! So I will be trying that as well this Christmas.  I will let you know how it turns out.

Third, I'm making "Family Night In" gift bags that have microwave popcorn, homemade jerky, cocoa, and marshmallows in them.  Not so much homemade, but put together.  I was going to include a gift card to Redbox, but have yet to find such a thing.  Considering one to Family Video as well.

Fourth, I'm trying my hand at making fudge.  I am not sure how this will turn out, so it is starting as dessert for a dinner party I'm attending Friday night.  If it's a hit, I will make some more and add it to the Family Night In bags, if it's not we'll chalk it up to a nice try :)

Fifth, I'm making Nate a fleece blanket with John Deere on one side and Iowa Hawkeyes on the other.  His two favorites at the moment.  This is another one that I have the two pieces of fleece, I just haven't cut and tied them yet.  However, that is going to be a little tricky with Nate around all the time ;)  I'll have to ship him to his favorite Great Aunt's house for a few days!

Sixth, I have made some beautiful button trees. Click here to see a pic of what I used as a template.  I made 4 of these, 2 with buttons and brown trees, 1 black tree with marbles that you can use in fish tanks and flower vases, and 1 black tree with crystals and rhinestones.

Seventh, I have 8x8 canvases that I have painted one each of blue, green, purple, and pink.  I am going to put Nate's handprints and footprints on them in coordinating colors.  These are almost done, I just have to get the prints on them.

Wow, I think that is everything.  Once I get them all finished I will post each project with step by step instructions on how to do them yourself.  I'm having so much fun making them I think I should go into business for myself!  Just add it to the to do list: Create own company!

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