It is amazing how swiftly time flies, particularly during the holiday season! I took an unexpected break from this here space which lasted nearly two weeks...but here I am, feeling a wee bit more relaxed now that the bulk of the holidays are behind us ~ though we are still putting the finishing touches on a few projects. While they weren't completed for Christmas day, we will give them to the intended family members on Three King's Day in a week's time.
By far, this was our most productive elf-making year. Between the two of us, we made most of our gifts and I am amazed at it all. Each holiday season, we try and make a few gifts but this year, my husband and I aimed to spend as little money on storebought gifts as possible. It was a wonderful challenge that we often spent discussing late at night, side by side on the couch beside the woodstove, as I was stitching or sewing or knitting, and my husband was dusting off the woodshavings after coming in from his shop.
I wish more people could appreciate that these treasures are coming from our hearts and minds and hands...that an expensive store-bought gift cannot replace the genuine love that is imbued in a hand-crafted item.
Together, Josh and I managed to make :
~ three pairs of mittens, two knit cowls, one Waldorf doll, a twin-sized quilt, one knit hat, a necklace, a night-time blessing wall hanging, three sets of pajama bottoms, a dozen jars of salve, half a dozen jars of facial cleanser, (not to mention all that canning from the fall), a guitar stool, an ironing board, a chair, a renovated dollhouse, and a hair stick (phewf!)
(I estimate that if we had bought all these items for our loved ones from a store, we would have paid at least triple the amount we spent on supplies!)
It gives me such pleasure to see my children appreciate the efforts that were made to bring them happiness on Christmas morning. And even greater pleasure to read my oldest son's note to St. Nicholas that was left out with some cookies ~ a tradition from my childhood where we would list in detail all the things we hoped Santa would leave for us. My seven year old only had this to write, "Dear St. Nick, I wish you happy travels tonight! Love, Forrest".