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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A knitter’s stocking

Disclosure: Amazon affiliate links used within this post. They help buy yarn.

knit heirloom stocking

Pattern: Heirloom Christmas Stocking from the purl bee
Yarn: 1 skein of Yarn Bee’s Soft Secret in hot pink
Needles: 3.5 mm (US 4) & 4.5 mm (US 6) 16″ circulars + DPNs in the smaller size
Modifications: I went down in needle size and also made the leg shorter.

I fell in love with this stocking pattern the day it came up in my blog reader. The Purl Bee did it again! I cast on right away. I had (have!) other projects, so I tried to work on this primarily in the evenings. It took me a few weeks, but I think it was worth it. I took the photo above with my phone and since the yarn is HOT PINK, it photographed horribly. Hence, the b&w photo filter. Thank goodness for VSCO cam, right?!

What do you think Santa will leave in my stocking? I’ve been dropping hints left and right to my husband and I guess we’ll see in a few weeks if he’s taken note. To be honest, if my stocking is empty I’ll still be happy just to look at it. Here are some more ideas, though–


I need a new copy of Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Knitter’s Almanac, as mine is almost falling apart. I love that book! I read a few chapters, the other evening, and it really made me miss blogging about knitting. // I can always use Moleskine Cahier Journals for jotting down ideas or new patterns. I think I have one in every room of my house. You never know when inspiration will strike! // Pens and pencils! Never enough. Ever. // Little finishing tools. These are my new favorite scissors. They’re so handy! And pretty. // Pretty much any accessories for my Nikon 1. This little camera goes with me everywhere! It’s awesome. Perhaps a pocket reflector? Hmmmm!

What do YOU want for Christmas?

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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!


Last year, I entered my card into the Holiday Photo Challenge at 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:


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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Christmas: the card


I finished up our Christmas card, this weekend. I had a few different ideas, but in the end, simplicity won. I took the photos about two weeks ago in the boys’ bedroom (the windows in their room are right next to each other, so there’s great light). They wore gray gingham shirts from Target and I crocheted some simple bow ties. They totally brought the charm and I got several nice photos.





When designing the actual card, I wanted something beautiful, but not outrageous. I found the font on Lost Type Co-op [Lavanderia] and was in love. The rest was pretty simple, a line here, a line there, and some stars. I ordered 4″ x 6″ prints from Snapfish and mounted them on white cardstock. Easy peasy.

What took time was my peace dove. If you turn it upside down, it’s an angel! I’m leaving it to the recipient to decide what it is.

the lino carving

Anyway, my original plan was to put it on some white cards and then have the photo on the inside. I made a few using some pewter ink (from my Speedball metallic ink set), but I didn’t really dig the huge contrast between white and dark gray. I liked the print enough to know I wanted to use it somehow. After rummaging through supplies, I found the kraft bags and since they were the perfect fit for the print, I decided to give it a shot. I used white ink and fell in love. The hours of printing and washing and carving (over and over and over because I kept finding new pieces to carve out) really paid off.





And that was that! I closed each up with a bit of Christmas-y washi tape on the back. The ones I have to mail will be put into white envelopes for some extra protection.

Have you made your Christmas card yet?? Are you DIY-ing any part of it?

I’m linking this post up to The Paper Mama’s Holiday Photo challenge. Go check out the adorable entries (and maybe enter yours??)!


the lino carving

December 1

It’s finally here. We’ve been listening to Christmas music, drinking hot chocolate (though the weather is just ugh here in Houston), and decorating. I really like the inspiration this month brings. I want to make so many things. I want to knit all the time. I want to cover everything in stamps or glitter or washi tape. I really wish I felt like this every month of the year.

That lino up there might be my nemesis. It started nicely, but now that I’m done and actually making prints, I don’t know, man. I have had to fine tune it no less than 8 times. I keep finding itty bitty pieces to carve out. I got tempted to just throw it in the trash but, NO….I’ve worked way too hard to just let it go. I had a tough time getting my ink right, but some of the final prints I made last night during my test batch were actually pretty. Today, I finish up our Christmas card! I’m really excited because the photos I took of my boys for it might be my favorites yet. Outtakes:

Christmas Card 2012: outtake, 2 Christmas Card 2012: outtake