Monday, January 5, 2009

Homemade Holiday

Almost forgot the precious homemade gift debut. As I mentioned before, in our penny pinching effort this year, we made gifts for Christmas. The girls really got into this and spend days working on theirs. I was able to help them come up with ideas that they could actually pull off. We got lots of felt (not wool felt ~ too pricey) and a variety of craft floss (like embroidery floss ~ just easier for kids to work with). And they had a blast making their gifts. I didn't get pictures of the gifts that they gave away to cousins, so just trust me on how cute those were.

Tally made these AG doll mittens and scarf for Tissy (well actually for Tissy's doll). Tally was able to conquer the blanket stitch and used it on lots of her projects.With a little design help from grandparents, Tally made these ice skate ornaments for me. I used to ice skate when I was younger and I have always loved ice skate ornaments. Aren't they just darling?

Tally has always been a natural communicator. And she was able to make these kinds of gifts totally on her own. She wrote a book for Chuck and made me a book of Poems. Full of phonetic spelling and all. I am not sure it gets any cuter than this. I just love these and I will bring them out in the years to come and put them out with the other Christmas books. (click on the picture below to enlarge the picture to read some of the poems)


Here I am unwrapping the gift that Tissy made me. I have mentioned that I want to make some cloth napkins and work harder at not wasting paper napkins. She came up with the idea to make napkins for our family with a special design for each person. She also got some help from Grammy and Papa and they couldn't be cuter. Her excitement for having me open these gifts was almost uncontrollable. She was bursting with joy. Tears and all.


The designs are from the left - race car for Chuck, teacup for Tissy, book for Tally, and apple for me.

My gift for the girls was this felt toy mail set. I had seen it in a catalog (HERE) and I thought it was too cute. But I wasn't willing to pay over $50 for the whole thing. So as I usually do, I figured I could make it myself (with no pattern). I thought it turned out just adorable.

All the stamps and names and such can be interchanged and are held on with bits of Velcro. The brown ones on the left are envelopes that the notes can go inside of.

My original idea was to paint on the felt, but I ended up stitching it on with floss instead. It has a sweet primitive look that I just love in simple toys.

Like I said before, we didn't take pictures of everything, but these are but a few homemade ideas. There was something really special about not having to hunt the stores for some gift that the person wont really use, and spend money that you shouldn't. It was special to make these and think about the person and express your love for them in a homemade way.

Though we ran out of time and didn't finish our gifts for everyone (our very fast moving threw us off), we had a lot of fun making these this year.

13 comments:

ScienceGeek said...

How precious! I love the gifts. I know they mean more to you than any store-bought gift ever could. You may never go back to traditional gifts again. I love that Tally cried with happiness when you opened her gift.

Christy said...

Next time we get together, I'll bring my serger and we can whip up some cloth napkins in no time. We can even let the girls do it. Joseph has helped make some with me.

Lee and Bev said...

Wonderful Christmas - so fun so see the girls excited about you and Chuck opening up your gifts from them! "Better to give than to receive" was the spirit this year!

Smith Schoolhouse said...

I love it! Your kids are really going to treasure these sweet memories with you!

cindy said...

What beautiful gifts! I love the post office set you made-very nice!

fitncrafty said...

What a great job on everything... It means so much when people take the time and effort of make something so nice and with their heart in it.
What fun and what a great lesson for the girls.
I have also been vowing to stop wasting paper napkins looks like a great project for the kids and I on a snowy day! I am already loaded with fabric markers and such....
Thanks for the great ideas.

DebiH. said...

What a sweet Christmas for your family and the gifts really are beautiful!

Julie said...

Loving everything!!!

K-Sue said...

Love them all! I especially love the family napkin set. Wonder what we'd put on our set?

I've never heard of craft floss, but will look for it now.

Permission to Mother said...

I love your gifts. Can I exchange with Tally next year. :)

When the boys eat oranges and things that make there hands juicy, I've been giving them a kitchen towel (or cloth diaper) instead of paper towel.

Cheryl said...

all wonderful!

Susan said...

Hand made gifts are the best!!
It was fun to see the felt mailbox and felt letters you made the girls when I was there in November. I know a lot of work went into them. I am sure they will get lots of fun and playing time out of them.

Annie said...

These are adorable! My favorite project is the napkins. We use cloth napkins and I have none as cute as those!!!