No screens, no technology – what did you do with your hands this year?
When I saw this prompt, I knew exactly what to write about. Like my father, I do not like to be idle. I need to be doing something whether taking care of the house, or working the crafts I love to do. My husband smiles every time I start or continue a craft project. I usually have many going at the same time.
There are four things I love to do, crochet, scrapbook, cross-stitch and baking. Two of them I do more than the other two, crochet and scrapbook. I do them to relax as well as make gifts for others. It also allows me to be creative. I think homemade gifts are those that come from the heart. Someone has taken the time and effort to sit and make the gift. They have thought it through, purchased the materials needed and put it together in whatever method they have chosen to do so. It may not come out perfectly but it came from the heart. I hope those I have made gifts for have enjoyed them.
I learned the crochet basics from one of my many cousins. From there I have read and taught myself by trial and error until the pattern looked right. I have undone and re-done my work many times due to missing a stitch or because it simply did not look right. Over the years I have made afghans, baby items, and a hat. Over this past year, I made a blanket for each of my husband’s granddaughters. They live in Maine and the winters get cold there. My hope is that they are keeping them warm.
Currently I am making an afghan for my husband at his request. He chose the pattern from the crochet pattern books I have. I could not obtain the colors shown in the pictures and noted in the instructions but the colors I purchased meet with his approval. What I have completed so far is looking pretty good if I say so myself.
Once I complete his afghan, I have identified other items I would like to make for Christmas gifts. I have seen cute dolls crocheted in the Amigurumi fashion on Pinterest I would like to do for all the youngsters on my husband’s side of the family. Just trying to figure out how to fit it into my busy schedule.
If you could see our dining room, you would know I am hooked on scrapbook. I have stores of different themed paper stacks in different sizes, embellishments and lettering of all types, dies for cutting patterns and a Cricut mini which I am still learning to use. I would love to one day have a dedicated room for my scrapbook projects and return my dining room back to a dining room. I am doing research on this.
I have made several scrapbooks for family and friends. The designs are not elaborate by any means but simple. By keeping them simple, to me they are elegant. Simple is elegant. I started small by doing an 8 x 8 scrapbook for my husband’s niece who had just had a baby. I gathered the pictures from the postings on Facebook and created the book from what I had on hand at the time. From there my first major scrapbook (12 x 12 in size), was a wedding scrapbook for a fellow co-worker. It turned out beautifully, and he and his wife have it out as their wedding album. I was touched and honored to learn this.
At the moment, I am working on a scrapbook for my parents of Christmas 2013 when my siblings, I and our families celebrated Christmas with our parents. I wanted to have it completed as a Christmas gift this year but it will have to be one for 2016. And then I will need to do another for Christmas 2016 if we can all travel to celebrate Christmas with them once again. The suggestion has been made, now to put the plans in place.
And on the heels of this scrapbook, is one planned for my youngest sister and her husband. This one will capture their wedding celebration which took place this past fall. I have the album, pictures and elements to begin designing, creating and assembling their wedding memories. Once it is complete, it will be on its way to them. My hope is they will love and enjoy the finished product.
I have often thought of creating scrapbooks as a side business. If I were to, I would call it Simple but Elegant Scrapbooks by Sharon. I continue to contemplate the possibility.
I have not worked on a cross-stitch project in a very long time. I have several I need to finish and one I need to start so I can complete as a gift. This is on my list of to-do for this year. Of the projects I have finished one was a cross-stitch pattern of P Buckley Moss “The Newborn”. I have another pattern I purchased that I will do one day for me.
I have also finished “The Lord’s Supper” which I gave to my parents as a gift, and a railroad sampler which went to my husband’s brother as he is a fanatic about trains.
I love to bake but it is only my husband and I so I save the baking for the holidays and take most of the finished product to work. If we lived closer to family, I would bake more and give to the family. As we do not, and my husband and I do not need the extra calories, the baking waits for the holidays.
Each Christmas my husband looks forward to the Honey cookies. It is a family recipe, and takes some effort to make as it is a two day process with the cookies being rolled and cut into Christmas shapes to be baked. I made a full batch this year and set some aside for us while taking the rest to work. They are always a big hit. Next year, I hope to be baking for my parents, siblings and their families while spending time with them in Wisconsin celebrating the Christmas holiday.
Between work and all the crafts I have going, I will need to do a better job of handling my time to fit in all that I want to do. It is already looking to be a busy year. Time to continue creating!!