Monday, November 19, 2007

Thinking Christmas

Don't worry, I'm not beginning to decorate, or trying to hurry the Thanksgiving season away. In fact, I'm slightly annoyed with some my neighbors for ALREADY having a Christmas tree up inside their house or their Christmas garland and lights outside their house. It's far too early for that. But, it's not too early to be thinking about MAKING Christmas presents.

When we were little, we made just about ALL of our Christmas presents. I can remember making my Mom a necklace out of a single crochet chain and being so excited to give it to her that I couldn't wait until Christmas and let her have it early. :)

I also remember the year that I turned 11. That year I made little gifts for every member in our extended family, down to my Dad's five cousins, their spouses, and their children. The gifts were simple -- little wooden puzzles for the fathers, pincushions or painted hearts for the mothers, and sewn toys for the children. I spent months getting ready and emptied out the bottom drawer of my dresser to stash all these presents. I even remember enlisting my best friends to help me wrap! I have no idea how my mother managed to post everything away, but I remember being thanked by several members of the family, so they must have made it.

One year my Dad brought home a huge bag and wouldn't let us look in it. He explained it all to Mom who then locked herself in our schoolroom for many nights. All we could hear was the faint whirr of the sewing machine, and we could only try to guess what was going on. Christmas morning greeted us each with a beautiful, large, rag doll, complete with an adorable outfit. We loved those dolls!

Other years we kids made cards, potholders, tea cozies; once we made a look-alike American Girl Doll complete with a whole wardrobe of clothes, a wooden bed and accessories for my sister who was longing to own Samantha.

Being confined pretty much to home this year, and without the pressure of outside engagements, my thoughts have turned again to making presents. I suggested to Rachel the other day that she might want to make some stacks of cards for presents. She immediately set to work, and before the day was done, she had at least 3 piles, neatly tied with satin ribbon. I can't say what my mind has been brainstorming, lest I spoil some surprises, but I'm having fun dreaming. We'll see what turns into reality.

The picture at the top shows the stockings I sewed the first Christmas we lived in Scotland. I boldly asked for scraps at the local tailor's and pieced together three stockings from the results. They are not stunning, but they were creative for what I had.

And so I am looking forward to extending the Thanksgiving season just a bit longer, and am not planning to decorate for Christmas until sometime in the first week of December, but in the mean time I'll enjoy my little secret thoughts about Christmas and what I might be able to make.

1 comment:

Heather Anne said...

We are on the same page Heather! I am looking through my 'stash' and dreaming of all the nice surprises that might be found under the tree! Our Dreamer has her first American Girl Doll and I have plans to make sheets, a nightie and a red velvet cape for Kirstin-doll. Our Storyteller loves vests and I found a scrap of a nice choclate brown cord that might just do. I want to make some shopping bags for my mum - maybe that floral upholstery cloth we both liked from Wal*Mart- something brighter then her faded old canvas bags. So many plans, so little energy! I'll just have to get started and we'll see how far I get! Isn't it fun to have a secret?