Child-Made Christmas Gifts

Every year, the girls and I make some homemade Christmas gifts for close relatives. Grandmoms, grandpops, aunts, uncles, and cousins. I love this tradition because it helps the girls to display their love and affection for family! It is also a wonderful opportunity for them to acquire new skills and ideas. We talk about who-would-like-which-gift the most; we package the gifts just-so; and we look forward to giving them out on Christmas day!

1. When Vivienne was one-year-old, I sat by her side and helped her thread tiny glass beads onto straight pins and stick them into Styrofoam balls until the entire ball was covered in beautiful, shiny colors. I was crazy! (Who was that lady?!) Bless her heart, Vivienne went right along with my typical “My-one-year-old-is-really-23” mentality. Grandmothers have the finished products if you need proof. (I’ve already written apologies to Vivienne in her journal.)

2. I eased up on things the following year when we made the cutest assortment of refrigerator magnets. I love, love, loved this idea. Use your 40% off Michael’s coupon to buy a package of tiny magnets and a set of tiny ornaments (try the miniature nativity scenes!). Plug in your glue gun and go to town. You’ll realize that anything – anything – can be turned into a magnet with a little melted glue. (We made one set with little plastic bows and bazooka chewing gum; another with colorful buttons! So cute.)

3. The year after that, we made cookies-in-a-jar, which I did *not* love. They are more difficult to make than they look and everyone reported that, although the cookies were delicious, they had to pry the brown sugar out with a pitch fork and a blow torch. (Not the Holly Jolly we were going for.) They sure looked cute, though, didn’t they? (Sigh.)

4. Last year, we made Candle Votives, which was an awesome project for the girls. A box of assorted glass globes from the thrift store, some glue + water, old paintbrushes, colorful tissue paper, and a ribbon for flair! Very do-able. Very pretty. Find more detailed instructions here.

5. And this year – well, this year – we’ve got a great idea up our sleeves. You’ll just have to tune in tomorrow for our 2010 homemade Christmas gift! (Unless you are a close relative; in that case, you get one day off from reading my blog!)

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