What I want for Christmas

As we do during this time of year my holiday to do list is frequently running through my head:

Write the letter.

Send the cards.

Finish the shopping.

Wrap the gifts.

Decorate.

What gifts am I making for people – can I get them done – should I even try?

It’s on a continuous loop in my head. Each year I swear I’m not going to fall into the crafting trap. But then I argue with myself that it would save money. I have the patterns! I have the supplies!

But what I really want for Christmas is a calm holiday. Full of crafting that is not also full of stress due to a looming deadline. Just happy stitching to celebrate and enjoy the holiday season like I see in so many of the Instagram photos and blog posts I admire.

And I want to spend the new year stitching things that reduce the supply inventory, make room in the stash closet and end up being used by someone who really needs or wants the finished product.

Good luck to me and good luck to all of us in search of crafting peace this holiday season. I wish you just enough to do to satisfy the itch to create.

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Advent – I win

I spent the last two weeks sewing together 24 felt ornaments and beading them with very small beads. I then moved on to embroidering 24 numbers on little felt strips.

I enjoyed this because I sat in my sun room with the natural late fall light falling in the windows. My favorite movies played on a secondhand TV I recently acquired. Periodically the VCR in the TV, which no longer has a door, would make a sound as if it were trying to eject a non-existent VHS tape. I forgot what that was called and almost typed DVD. This would have been more climactic if it made the noise each time I completed an ornament.

Regular readers of this blog or my life will know that I am often running right up to a deadline with a major project like a hand-sewn Advent Calendar. However, due to a frantic sewing session on Friday, this calendar was completed well ahead of the Dec. 1 deadline. The best thing about it though is that Niece 1 helped put on the Velcro and asked me to teach her to sew, and Niece 2 wanted to help me sew on the numbers. She is three but promised she would be careful. Then she proceeded to try to cut one of the non-replaceable felt strips in half.

In the midst of a large project like this you have moments of wondering is it all worth it? Will people appreciate this gift I worked so hard to create? Will I actually go blind sewing 30 sequins on this star? These are all valid questions, but the true reward was not completing the project, although I was probably too proud of myself for doing it. It gave me all the good holiday feels to spend time with those two girls I love so much and have them share in the family tradition of taking on projects that are too large when there are not quite enough days left to finish them without causing permanent bodily damage.