Christmas is a Craft

I’ve talked a lot in past years about simplifying Christmas and focasing on the true meaning and all that. I truly believe it, as a family we’ve done different things and over the years I have scaled back, somewhat. I have a confession though I love to spoil my kids at Christmas time. We dont buy them toys, or clothes, unless needed, at other times of the year, and I like to shower them with gifts once a year. I enjoy it so much.

"Little Man's" afghan, he wanted dark red.

“Little Man’s” afghan, he wanted dark red.


this year, Christmas is going to have to be a craft. I’m cutting back like I never have before. Finances aren’t shaking out like we would like or had planned on for various reasons that I don’t want to go into right now, and things are a bit…tight. I’m a crafty girl, I totally got this. Last month I mentioned in passing I was thinking of crocheting all the big kids a blanket, and what colors would they like, if that’s what I did. I was shocked at the responce. You would think I had given them the moon!  Since then I’ve been asked several times if I would PLEASE make blankets. So here I am, in August rushing to finish five afghans before December. I think I’m as excited as they are!


I’ve been thinking a lot about seasons lately. Over the past year, our first on the farm, I have been watching and noticing how much seasons affect us, more so than they did before.  I have always been a season watcher and I’ve wanted to be able to live life more in tune with the seasons like our ancestors did. Our modern world prevents that to come extent, we move from heated homes to heated cars to heated buildings, while we do break out the winter coats and boots, no longer do we have a need to stockpile wood and get out the winter quilts.  There is something nostalgic about the idea of moving and living our lives according to the seasons, living within that rhythm, honoring those cycles.

Here on the farm I am seeing that our lives are coming to revolve around the seasons more.  Spring brings renewal, new growth, vigor and vitality.  Summer is active, hard work, seeing the buds of spring mature.  Fall is maturity, winding down, cleaning up, slowing down.  Winter bring sleep, quiet, slow, resting for the burst of spring to come.  Spring, summer and fall are very busy times on the farm, there is a lot going on, different thing for different seasons.  Winter brings a blessed rest from all those activities where we can focus our efforts in other directions, the land isn’t screaming for our attention and we can enjoy the fruits of all our spring, summer and fall labors.

While I am always working on some type of handiwork, winter brings about a burst of activity in that area, I love cozy winter nights stitching away sitting next to Dadzoo. (Hopefully next winter it will be in front of our wood stove!)

I decided I was going to learn to do lace work, my first project, a crocheted lace doily, next will be snow flakes for next years Christmas tree.


And, as always I have a baby blanket in progress, this one is ear marked for someone special.

IMG_5157 IMG_5158In what ways do you move and change with the seasons?





our two year old,
is the, small, silent type.
She rarely speaks,
and when she does it is only because she wants to.
Never because she is prompted
or bribed,
or begged.
She has a lot of made up works,
for example she says
when she wants a drink of water.
She also uses a lot of hand gestures and pointing to communicate.
Some people would be worried,
but I’m not.
I’ll give you an example why.

Yesterday, Sunday,
we were all sitting around the dinner table eating,
and Dadzoo along with the rest of the zoo think talking in “hash-tag” (#) is really funny.
Everything they would sayat dinner that night they would prefaced with “Hash-tag: canyoupleasepassthesalt.”
I soon noticed Monkey, who was stilling to my left whispering:
I stopped and asked
“Are you saying ‘hash-tag’?”
She smiled and said

Since then we have been able to get her to say anything just by asking her in “hash-tag”
“Monkey, say ‘hashtagiwantadrink'”
and that little Monekey says


She speaks



My Grandparents recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
They have 8 children, 32 grandchildren (not counting spouses) and 40 great-grandchildren (with many more on the way).  What a wonderful legacy.

As part of the gifts and festivities they were presented with a quilt.
There are 64 squares in eight different colors to represent each child.

I had the privilege of being able to piece the quilt.


We did a rag style quilt, where the seams were sewn inside out and chenilled. IMG_4694 IMG_4696Each square was first sewn together, with a  layer of thin cotton batting and a square of cotton flannel, then they were pieced together. IMG_4697 IMG_4698 IMG_4700

Once the quilt was pieced, I made tiny little cuts in the exposed seams, that took forever, and made a huge mess on my white couch, I’m still picking up little pieces of thread.  IMG_4702 IMG_4709

Then the whole quilt was washed, twice, and dried in the dryer, twice to fluff out the snipped seams and give it the chenilled look. IMG_4710

As I was making this quilt, I thought a lot about the art of quilting.  It seems like there has been a renewed interest over the last several years.  Women create beautiful works of art using little pieces of fabric sewn very carefully into intricate patterns.  I thought about the origin of quilting, how it really came about by women, being frugal and provident in their homes.  Pieces of worn dresses, blankets, curtains, sheets, shirts all being cut into little patches and pieces, by hand, together to make warm blankets for their families.  I thought of how these women took a chore and made it beautiful, and I thought of how women daily take the mundane tasks around them and create beauty, they make homes, lovely homes filled with creativity, warmth and love.  I thought of how this is the special role of women and homemakers, and how empty our lives would be without it.

New Blanket

My newest baby blanket

This one is for my newest niece
her name is Rose
I love that name.

 I was lucky, this past year I have been able to make three baby blankets, one for my little squishy and for two new nieces.  Love, love, love the new babies and especially excited for three little girls all in a row!

I have started another blanket, I always have to have some sort of project to fill all my down time, this is a full size afghan, using “chunky” yarn.  It is fun working with something so different and I love how easily you can see the stitch.

This beauty is a gift as well…. but for whom I’m not telling!