Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Getting Ready for Christmas - Part 8 - The Presents

The Fatal Gift of Beauty

Everything starts with a list especially when it comes to Christmas presents. I start by writing a list of all those parties I intend to buy for with a proposed budget by the side of the list.  This is usually on a little pocket note book that fits snugly into my handbag and which I keep with me at all times.

Ideally you should start buying things when you see them from January 1st of each New Year  - items that you see reduced and that would make an ideal present for so and so if you have the opportunity to buy there and then do it.  Pop it up in a present box put away from everyone else in the family.  Then check items off the list once bought. Buying presents throughout the year  in this way does not hit the pocket hard in one fair swoop.

Wrap each one as you get them  - you can really go to town and do some creative wrapping if you wrap them as you get them.  but you must keep them in the present box otherwise you could lose them.

You should also take advantages of the reductions in wrapping paper, gift bags and cards.  Remember wrapping paper and cards which are reduced ridiculously cheaply can be used for decoupage and/or card toppers or to use the cards in their own right.  If you buy a lovely present it is nice to make an effort and decorate it as best as you can.

Alternatively if you decide that next year you want a home made Christmas then if you start after Christmas to make specific items you will give yourself ample time in which to complete them and they need not cost an arm and a leg to complete.  There are numerous craft blogs and websites with freebie patterns that are ideal for wherever you are starting on the craft front whether you are an absolute beginner, intermediate or skilled. The only way you progress with craft is to practice and each piece you do will be your work and if there is  little mistake in it next time round you will remember not to make it.  These days there are also video tutorials online as well.  A visual tutorial is often best as you can see what you need to do

In reality what tends to happen here despite the best of intentions is a last minute panic a big pile of wrapping paper and me getting taffled up with the sellotape.  Does it sound familiar.

Presents will be bought here over the next few weeks and wrapped so that I do not end up doing the last minute thing - it causes too much stress.

But next year I intend to aim for a home made Christmas starting January 1st 2016.  This year things have rather been against me but the early quieter months of the year may be the best time to get a wriggle on.  Even if it is only make some home made Christmas decorations out of beads or out of fabric and you give a few to family or friends; and start a tradition but make different decorations the year after etc. it would be something different something you made a new family tradition.

I intend to get stuck in with my beaded baubles in the New Year.

Catch you soon.




  1. Every year from when my kids left home I made them a special tree decoration, I also make them for close friends, I dont send out cards at all, for the past few years I ave stopped buying gifts I make a gift, I wanted to get away from the commercial side of the season and dont like all this I want this or that or it has to be a certain brand or label, I refuse to be caught up in it all and bow down to pressure, now a few years on Christmas is once again becoming an enjoyable family occasion that it used to be before money, the kids look forward to getting there tree decoration now I am started on my grandchildrens trees as they start to leave home and there is always a guessing game of this years pressies that are all appreciated made with love and thought :-)

  2. Hi Dawn, I have been learning beading and have a stack of patterns on Pinterest to follow - do not get much time to sit and concentrate - needs to be a time when OH is not around tomorrow's heirlooms. I think it is so special to pass something down whether it be beaded or sewn or embroidered and I think it is so very satisfying. I also have brown paper - the plan was this year to make my own wrapping paper from spray paint and leaves but unfortunately I did not get to it but there is always next year. We never asked for anything when we were growing up because there just was not the money about. We always had nice presents and if there was something specific we had mentioned then sometimes and only if they could afford it would it appear. It was always doubly special then. The trouble is a lot of problem is peer pressure with children with certain ones bragging about what they have or are going to have and I think it gets out of hand because those with parents who do not have those types of funds it makes them feel inadequate and out of it. 'we had similar issues with my step-daughter and it turned out she was being bullied by so called friends. Kids can be so very cruel. I like to make and be occupied. It is pretty satisfying to make something unique and perhaps a one off for a loved ones but I am equally as happy in the kitchen storing foods down for long term and Christmas usage. Those that craft and bake show their love in a different way. Look at the patchwork quilt made with love to wrap loved ones snug a living testament to practicality and beauty but above all keeping warm. That's the sort of thing that consumerism and money really just cannot buy. Christmas for me is about family and good food. Being as my extended family is still expanding I end up making more and more each year but that for me is part and parcel of what its all about.

    Take care and catch you soon.




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