Creative Christmas

>> Monday, December 29, 2008

Several months ago when my job ended, my husband and I knew this Christmas would be tight. So we decided that this year instead of buying gifts for our children and each other, we would make gifts. And I must say, I think this was one of the best Christmases we've had! We decided on a limit of $10 per person including all materials, and we ended up making gifts for less than $5 per gift. And it was such a fun Christmas! I had so much fun making gifts this year! It was so much more enjoyable than running around the stores, fighting crowds and stressed shoppers!

I'd like to share pictures with you of the gifts we made for each other, but unfortunately I'm having technical difficulties and can't access the folder on the computer with our pictures. Ah, the joys of technology! I love my little computer, but I will admit there are days when I could find great satisfaction with throwing it out the window. :-) So instead I will try to describe our gifts, and when the photo's folder is responding to me again, I'll post pictures.

At the beginning of the school year we gave each of our girls a Faith and Friends doll. The girls love their dolls, and have named them Esther and Violet. My husband and I wanted to make doll beds, but we decided this would be bigger project than we were prepared to tackle. So instead I found instructions to make sleeping bags. These sleeping bags are for an 18" doll and our girls' dolls are only 14 inches, but this way the dolls can have sleepovers. Also, my oldest daughter eventually wants a Life of Faith doll, which is about the size of the American Girl dolls. If she ever gets one, she can use the sleeping bag for her, as well. (A Life of Faith dolls are similar to American Girl, but they are made by a Christian company, Mission City Press.) The girls were so excited to try out their sleeping bags for their dolls, and their dolls had a sleepover that night! Both girls share a room, so the sleepover took place in their closet. :-)

My husband really enjoys trains, and someday would like to have a train set. The girls know this, and decided they wanted to make Daddy a toy train. I found the pattern online, and we spent a few evenings putting together a small train and track. Here is the front car they put together. Our youngest daughter needed something easy to make for her sister, so she painted some pretty pictures with her water colors, and we glued them onto a tissue box. Then we made a lid for the box, and voila! It became a treasure box for her sister to store her doll clothes in! Our older daughter was a bit more adventurous, so she found a cute little paper mechanical Frog Chorus toy to put together. The girls had so much fun making gifts for each other, and for Daddy and I! And they were so excited Christmas Eve to see everyone open the gifts they had made!

My girls each made me some cards on which they drew pictures of some of their favorite Veggie Tales characters from the latest movie, The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything. My oldest daughter also made me a little paper bear, named Cinnamon Bear. (Each night before bed we listened to the radio program Cinnamon Bear on the radio. It was so fun to listen to, and I'm sad it's over!) My youngest daughter made me a little paper cat, and said it's Cinnamon Bear's cat. They colored and cut out their own creations. :-)

I won't be posting a picture of the gift I made for my husband, as the person I got it from asked me to not post it on my web site. I will honor his request, but I'll describe it for you. It's a little paper train that goes through a tunnel and around some trees, when you turn a crank on the side. If you Google for paper moving train you will find a picture of it, but unfortunately the pattern is no longer being offered online.

My husband made me a booklet of romantic poems and songs, as well as some romantic pictures. And the very last picture was of an old barn on a snowy winter day. I told him that must be the view out the back door of my dream house! :-) He also bought me a coffee cup, but that was OK because it is the perfect coffee cup, and I've been wanting it for a while, plus he was still able to stay under budget. :-) When the photo file is working again I'll post pictures. I'm not the most computer savvy person, so I don't know how to fix the problem. All I know is some days I can't access the folder, then as if by magic, some days it works just fine. :-)

My husband and I decided we would open gifts on Christmas Eve, so Christmas we would be able to devote the day to Jesus, since it is His birthday. :-) Christmas morning my husband baked a angel food birthday cake (we thought that would be rather appropriate), then after lunch I frosted it with Cool Whip and we covered it with crushed Butterfinger bars and crushed candy cane crumbs. It sure was tasty! Before we ate we all sang Happy Birthday Jesus. We have a nativity set up and each week the Wise Men move somewhere else in our home, on their journey to find the newborn King. They haven't made it yet, but will probably do so sometime soon. What an exciting day that will be, as well!

I hope your Christmas was a peaceful time for you! Even though Christmas was last week, we can still celebrate, so Merry Christmas!


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