she's making a list... checkin' it twice

In case you're like me and haven't given it much thought yet Christmas is right around the corner. I know many of you are way ahead of the game and have been making gifts for months. But I was too busy figuring out school and enjoying fall to give much thought to preparations. Now I'm ready to join you; I have my list written with ideas and supplies needed. If I make 1/2 the stuff on that list I'll be happy!

Someone else is making plans and busy sewing for Christmas in our house. She's researching ideas and designs on-line and is holed up this afternoon (with the door shut) in our sewing room with explicit instructions to do not enter. Mom's do have a few special privileges as I was able to snap this photo before the sewing began in earnest.

I was pleased with the gifts we made last year for Christmas, framed photos - my photos and Damien's handcrafted frames. Can you believe that I still haven't finished one?? I get photos developed so rarely and the print I intended to give did not print well and eventually I decided it was better to just send it with this year's gift. Let's hope the recipients feel the same way - ha.

Christmas Eve Dec 2008
Christmas Eve Dec 2008

This year we have something else in mind inspired by Handmade Home (like every other crafty person on the planet). But I also want to make little things for the kids, unique to each of them - which I haven't done in the past. Hopefully I'll get some of these projects off the ground soon but I need to make a trip to Goodwill first for supplies.

Need some ideas to get your creative genius going? Last month Sarah at Handmade Homeschool posted this extensive, linked Handmade Gift Ideas list. It's a great resource to help get you thinking and dreaming...

What about you? Can you share something you're making? Don't worry, your husband, kiddos or mother-in-law probably aren't going to be reading my blog. Or maybe you've posted about it on your blog, leave a link and do share. Just don't start playing the Christmas music yet, I'm still living and loving autumn!


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  • nicola@which name?

    nicola@which name? on Oct. 16, 2009, 8:19 p.m.

    oh, yippee! you are one of my creative favorite, renee, so glad you are on the holiday crafting wagon now. can't wait to see what you come up with. we are hoping to make this an entirely homemade holiday. i find our brothers and my dad most difficult, so i am still struggling with ideas for them that suit. mike, too, this year. in the meantime, i am working on kid gifts (can share those if you like) and am wrapping up a couple adult gifts. lala's teachers are getting the nature calendar i made. mike's brother and sister in law will get a made-by-me calendar as well, but it will be a series of photos of the kids. mike's mom is getting a t-shirt with a photo transfer of her cat on it (trust me, she will love this) and lala is getting one identical to match (both of them will love matching each other). that idea came from soule mama's blog. my mom is getting a framed (or finished hoop) embroidery of the kids hand prints as well as the 1931 receipt i found in the bag of embroidery thread i used. both sets of grandparents will also get their annual copy of the sibling album i put together, which includes a photo of the kids together month-by-month since finn's (december) birthday, last year. i am forgetting what else for the moment! nicola

    nicola@which name?'s last blog post... mindfulness


  • Kirsten

    Kirsten on Oct. 17, 2009, 12:03 a.m.

    I am busy making our xmas gifts as far I've made 1 purse for my sis...and I will make some cool laptop bags for her partner and my bro...then two picnic blankets for my sis-in-laws and their fams...and my mom requested another couple pin-tucked table runners for her home. Phew...we'll see if I can get them all finished! I have a HUGE stack of craft books from the much inspiration! Homemade gifts are the best!


  • Spring

    Spring on Oct. 17, 2009, 1:27 a.m.

    Ok, I am SO happy to hear everyone's ideas! I have been completely unable to "go there" in my head- last year I was full of ideas that I loved upon completion. Really liking the picnic blanket ideas, also the receipt idea got me thinking of an idea I had a long time ago for my inlaws. And I had forgotten that I was planning on doing a calendar with photos from this year. Now I want to think of creative ways to frame the pics of the kids I had taken. I'd LOVE to hear the kid-gift ideas! :) Thanks for getting me going!


  • nicola@which name?

    nicola@which name? on Oct. 17, 2009, 5:43 a.m.

    i have had that picnic blanket idea on my mind as well, but it is a big enough undertaking, that i want to be certain the recipient(s) will like it! in fact, i thought a whole picnic basket gift (with an old, wooden picnic basket that i scored on freecycle) would be fun. also, one of the things i plan to make is a homemade face/body scrub for my mamma friends. at some point in the future, i plan to post a list of homemade holiday ideas on my blog, but for now, here are some kid ideas: crayon roll; cook's set with child's apron, oven mit, and chef's hat; cape; doctor kit; bean bag toss game; doll clothes; child sized doll sling; wooden blocks; felt foods; my 5 year old and my husband plan on making a wooden boat and a wooden airplane for my toddler, who loves both.

    nicola@which name?'s last blog post... mindfulness


  • Candelion

    Candelion on Oct. 17, 2009, 6:35 a.m.

    My mom made capes for my two cousins last year, because the year before, she made a great throw for her brother and they ran around the house with it tied around their necks.. Capes are great!!

    Last year, she also got this great santa "calendar box" for 10% of the original price-- Score!! It's a three-dimensional, wood santa with 25 little cubby-holes. She was able to get two for my cousins. We're going to put little presents, a message telling them to open a certain present, a message telling them to do something, and do many other fun things with each cubby. I can't wait to get started!

    However, I am really struggling with figuring out any gifts for my immediate family this year.. Hopefully, I will find some inspiration soon. Everyone's comments have helped ;)


  • Jenn

    Jenn on Oct. 17, 2009, 6:10 p.m.

    you can definitely be making gifts year-round but still be enjoying the other months!! i have been! ;0)

    i have been sewing at night for a few months, making little things here and there, tinkering, ENJOYING it...not rushing. so many wait until the last moments and then they rush, rush, rush...i don't like that. i don't want to feel stressed. i am so happy with how i've done it this year.

    almost everything is homemade. some things are purchased or traded for and they are homemade by other that feels good.

    i am also getting the kids a few books (have to!)

    so i am really, really pleased with how it's working out and i love hunkering down under blankets with some tea in the cold fall/winter months working on things for my kiddos and friends and family...nothing makes me happier (well...almost nothing)


  • exhale. return to center.

    exhale. return to center. on Oct. 17, 2009, 11:30 p.m.

    i'm having fun making recycled wool sweater hats right now. thinking a few of those will make their way into the christmas gifts this year.

    also having fun making paper weights with flowers pressed from our garden on rocks with mod podge.


    ps ~ i'm hosting an author (cindy hudson) this weekend on my blog along with a book giveaway. come on by and check it out if you have a minute!!! :-)


  • Naomi

    Naomi on Oct. 19, 2009, 1:34 a.m.

    I'm so glad I started early this year. Instead of feeling like rushing and ending up buying a lot of our gifts, I've been enjoying making gifts in the evening after the kids go to bed. It is nice calm-me-down project before bedtime, or at least most of them are anyway.

    So the gift I made tonight (inspired by you!) was a shoulder bag for Nemo. I bought a yard of Thomas the train engine cloth (because he absolutly LOVES trains) and made the bag so he can carry a few of his favorite toys (trains included) on our weekly visit to Grammy and Grampy's house. I can't wait to show it to him! I'll probably end up putting a few smaller gifts in the bag too.

    And now I'm still brainstorming, thinking what can I make for Daphney, and I think I'll check over at Homemade Homeschool now to see if I can find some good inspiration!


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