I've been a busy little crafting bee these last few days. Last year I participated in a Christmas Swap and when asked if I wanted to do it again, I just couldn't resist. The swap sounded great in September when I had nothing on my schedule :) The idea is that you make a small gift for about 15 kids and they ('they' meaning the Mama's) do the same so you end up getting the same amount of gifts back. I was so behind on my 'Christmas making'. While I've had many months notice to get moving & shaking I wasn't able to start crafting until this past Sunday. About 1/2 the families participating in the swap live in New Zealand and so I had to have 12 gifts made in time for Chris to take them on his flight to NZ. Initially I was going to make skirts for all the girls, but then had a change of heart and decided to go with more individualized gifts. Here's what I made this year: DIY Buton Flower Kit: I made (2) of these kits for sisters Bella & Tashi who are 10 and 8. Their Mother recommended something the girls could do together and I thought they might enjoy this. The kit includes everything they need to make their own flowers: wire, buttons, felt leaves and a flower to show the finished product. (I blogged original instructions here) Kaya is 7 and his Mother says he is a "math & science guy". I don't know where the idea for a checker board came from, but I'm crossing my fingers he likes it. The board is made from brown & red felt that was weaved together & sewn around the edges. I had just enough blue & yellow buttons for the playing pieces (phew!) The 'board' comes with 2 red felt pouches to hold the pieces. These books/journals are for Bodhi (12), Aria (10) and Stella (1o). All of their Mothers remarked that they liked writing or reading so this seemed like it might be a good fit. The covers came together pretty easily. Out of all the gifts I made for the swap, the only thing I had to purchase were the spiralbound notepads. Little boy Sage is 2 and his Mother said he would 'love anything'. These are small stuffed flannel elephants backed with felt. Arlo is 4 1/2 and 'a dreamer'. He gets his own pirate patch and hook arm (Henry now says I need to re-create this for him for Christmas. I'm taking that as a good sign :)Girls Ivy (3) and Ruby (7) each got a set of 3 felt donuts. Ruby's Mother said I really couldn't go wrong so I hope that's the case! Here are instructions if you want to make your own.
There were also (2) sets of bean bags that I somehow lost the picture for...
As hard as it was trying to think of things the children would like, I really enjoyed doing this. I hope they get a kick out of these. I have 6 more gifts to make for the families here in the states which I'll try to work on this weekend. I've still got a little bit of time for those.
I just heard on the news we are 16 days away from Christmas. This gift making was just the kick in the pants I needed to get my Christmas craft on. Kate wants a dress-up princess dress and Henry always gets a matching pair of pajamas for he & a friend. And then there are Christmas cards....every year I say we'll do them. I am not committing to anything.
Advent calendar is coming soon. We've completely jacked it all up- lol. For some reason we started with mitten #25 and then counted backwards but that didn't seem right and we realized we were doing it all wrong. Every night we couldn't remember which number we were on, so I'm re-stringing it and we'll be back in business soon. You are supposed to start with 1 on December 1st, aren't you? I need a nap.
Do you have any awesome holiday making activities I could do with Henry's 1st grade class next week? Comments are open, so if you've got a good one by all means, leave one!
Here's to happy Christmas making!