Make it a crafty Christmas!

It's a Crafty Christmas

Christmas crafts are my jam! I adore handmade ornaments and now that my kids are old enough, I can force them help them to make their own. I thought I would share some of the ones we’ve made, this year. Some were already made during our last few scout meetings (oh, Tigers!) and others, I’m taking with me to our scout Christmas party, so the evening isn’t just a bunch of kids with sugar rushes running around the community center.

1. The top left corner is my FAVORITE. Winter Hat ornaments made with leftover yarn and a toilet paper roll.

2. Cookie cutter jingle bells are a kid favorite. Just use pipe cleaners to secure bells to a Christmas cookie cutter. I found these Wilton ones at Tuesday Morning for 29 cents! Score! If you don’t have a Tuesday morning, this 18-piece set looks good.

3. The foam ornament in the right hand corner is a kit from Hobby Lobby. It’s actually a photo ornament, so there goes one of our Tiger electives.

4. The beaded candy cane is an idea from a kit I saw. Just alternate red and white tri-beads on a pipe cleaner, then shape it into a candy cane.

5. The popsicle stick Rudolph is pretty self-explanatory. My MIL had one my husband made when he was little, so I just copied hers. Three popsicle sticks glued together, wiggly eyes put in place, and a red pom-pom nose, with a jingle bell tied to the center by a piece of yarn.

6. The popsicle stick Christmas tree was fun to shop for. Make a triangle with popsicle sticks, then let the kiddos color it green with markers. We glued sequins, buttons, and other “ornaments” on to decorate it. The photo was a quick print on my home printer on regular printer paper. Twine at the top to hang it.

7. Last, but not least, the baby wooden clothespin Rudolph. These wooden clothespins were actually given to me by my MIL. They were leftover from when she did this craft with her kids! So, early 90s? Anyway, it’s 2 clothespins inverted and glued to each other. Mini pom pom nose, ribbon bow tie, and sharpie eyes. Simple, but cute.

I actually put together little ornament kits for my scouts because I am slightly neurotic when it comes to messes. I KNOW they’d help me clean and I should trust them more with supplies, but let’s be real–things are gonna get crazy. SO, each kid gets all the supplies they need and they can make them at the party, or take them home to work on. It was actually quite pleasing to lay out all the supplies and then make little baggies of craft stuff.

What are you crafting for Christmas? How is your Christmas knitting going?! I have made a ton of those bulky zig-zag cowls and oh boy, I am loving that pattern still.

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Christmas: the happy card

We are barreling toward Christmas and I just want things to slooooow down. For like a day, at least. Please? We put up our tree, this weekend, and I realized I haven’t bought ANY gifts. I finished knitting one glove, then moved on to deep cleaning/organizing both my living room and office (we FINALLY bought a couch! Another story for another day). I’m still not finished with that, but at least you can see my floor, now! I’m going to be one of those poor souls out shopping the weekend before Christmas. Maybe crying a bit in the car. We’ll see!

Anyway, I say all that to get to this: the Christmas card! In years past, I have taken and edited photos by early November. This year, we were a week into December and I still had no idea what we’d do! On Sunday, I started getting a little anxious about it, so I went outside with my boys and just took a bunch of shots. It was a cold+gray day, but they still had fun and we were all giggling around the yard. This shot ended up being my favorite. It isn’t perfect and they aren’t even looking at the camera, but it so wholly captures their joy for this season!

happyxmas-13-1

Last year, I entered my card into the Holiday Photo Challenge at thepapermama.com and it was great fun, so I’m entering this year, as well. She always has a quirky card to share. I kind of love that her chickens are in her photo, this year. Seriously. Go check it out: 2013 Holiday Photo Challenge @thepapermama! Enter your own card for a chance to win some super prizes.

Here are some outtakes from this year:

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boys3boys4
boys-trip
boys13boys14
boys5

With a full heart, we wish you a happy Christmas! If you’re on my address list, you’ll hopefully get a card before the big day. If not, consider this your e-version!

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Special Requests

knucks

Hello, friends. I have not blogged since the beginning of the month. I hope you all are well, churning out projects and enjoying the merriment of the season. I have been working on various projects and trying to brainstorm ideas for reviving my passion for blogging. I love sharing projects, but I find myself working on things and then they leave me before I even get a chance to snap a photograph. I sigh and move on. I just want to WANT TO make an effort to document them. Do you know what I mean?

My son made a special request and it made my mama heart soar. He said he wanted gloves without the finger tips. He thought we could cut the fingers off of some but then it was like a little light bulb went off in his head and he excitedly said, “OR YOU CAN KNIT THEM!!” and yes, I could. Of course. I have other projects I could be knitting, like Christmas gifts (!!), but I felt like these were more important. I’m using the pattern Knucks from Knitty. I have made it once, in my first year of knitting, when I was ambitious and wanted to knit EVERYTHING. Now, I remember why I haven’t knit it again: those little fingers are tedious! Alas, they work up quickly and before you get tired of doing something, you’re on to a new & exciting instruction.

Are you working on anything special? Do you drop everything and knit when someone you love asks for something specific?

Happy Thanksgiving to my American friends!

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Knitting: a cardigan for Andrew

knitting: a cardigan for Andrew

Pattern: Go Buffalo by Terri Kruse
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca Light (4 skeins oceanic mix, 1 skein mahogany mix)
Needles: US 3
Mods: used a different needle size, so I made the largest size to fit my 5 year old; changed the stripe pattern; added pockets and elbow patches

diptych: cardigandrew

knitting: cardigan, front & back

diptych: pantsless cardigan

diptych: cardigandrew faces

cardigandrew4

buff-elbow4

I think he likes it?

This pattern was supremely easy! I guess the only thing I would change next time is adapting it to work in the round. I’m not afraid to steek, so I don’t really know why I knit this flat. I think I’ve evolved as a knitter to not hate purling so much.

I adjusted the stripe pattern to fit my yarn stash. I increased the amount of blue between the stripes every repeat. The first bit has only 4 rows of blue, the next has 6, the next has 8, the next has 10…and so on! The last 3 have 16. I added the pockets and elbow patches because I had like half a skein of mahogany left over and didn’t want it to go to waste. Plus, they’re stupid cute.

For the pockets, I picked up about 20 stitches and then knit stst for 26 rounds and k2ps for 6. I attached as I went. The elbow patches are your run of the mill “circles” started with 6 stitches, increased by 6 every round to 48. They’re more like hexagons.

This sweater is beautiful and I only had to give up one piece of candy for these photos. Win!

elbow patches for the win!

hug yo'self

pockets and elbow patches

Cowboy in a garden center

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garden center dance party

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face of mischief

Friday, my boys’ school broke uniform protocol and let the kids dress up like cowboys. It happens once a year and the older grades have a big ol’ hoedown with dancing and singing. It’s all great fun right before Spring Break. They looked like this before school–

67.365: cowbabies

The photos at top were taken at a Houston Garden Center. I went with my mom to browse and Andrew got pretty dang silly while we strolled through the Japanese boxwoods. I am glad I had my camera bag with me. I just pulled it out and snapped off a few frames.

I’m also glad that Spring is near. Everything is so lusciously green! The COLOR just makes me swoon. I was even happy for the cold front that pulled through because everything is looking so pretty anyway.

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