Round Up: Homemade Christmas Presents
I have been dying to share all the homemade Christmas presents I have been working on this month, but haven’t wanted to ruin any surprises. But now that everything has been gifted, I can share, share, share!
For me homemade presents are always the best. They are unique, heartfelt, and intimate. Before I had kids, I would make most of my gifts, but now I just don’t have the time. But now it gets way too stressful. Christmas is already a challenging time for my tightly wound children and adding a bunch of mommy stress wasn’t helping. By the time Christmas rolled around I was so resentful about not being allowed to finish anything, that I didn’t even want to give the kids their gifts. It kind of ruined the whole purpose of doing it in the first place. So I have cut back. I figure one of the best gifts I can give my kids at Christmas is a non-crazy mommy.
But Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a few homemade gifts, so here are the ones I did make!
Homemade Christmas Presents
B– needed a new comforter for his bed. I haven’t been able to find one that I like, so he has been using his dad’s old blanket from when he was a kid. B– is a sentimental little guy and loves that it is his daddy’s blanket. He drags it all over. When my kids are playing, the blanket is usually right there either acting as a fort or helping my kids transform themselves into a two-headed monster. Kudos to my mother-in-law for making a blanket that has survived so much love. It has held up astonishingly well, but it is now starting to tear and wear thin. B– will still use this as a blanket, but I wanted a comforter that didn’t look so worn and I am hoping that by having a second blanket for his bed that maybe this one can be made to last a little longer.
I am a firm believer that the purpose of quilts is to use up fabric scraps. For that reason I have never bought fabric for a quilt from a fabric store. I always use what I have on hand or that I have gotten for free. This one was some hand-me-down fabric I got from my mom. She found it at a garage sale and fell in love with the crazy polyester. The lady had started to make the blocks and never finished it. I love garage sales for craft supplies. So many people start projects and never finish them. You can just swoop right in like a vulture and buy their supplies for dirt cheap.
At first I started out with the stripe fabric framing the squares, but in the words of my husband, “It hurt to look at it.” He was so right. So I took some of it apart, flipped the fabric, and just used the backside which is that pretty green color. Quilting at its finest! Love me some good ole’ polyester!
One of my favorite parts of Christmas this year was staying up and tying this quilt Christmas Eve with Ed’s mom and sister. I love spending time with them and there is something about chatting over a quilt that is so idyllic.
Final Cost: $5 for the batting
My husband did most the work on these, but I did the painting. Every year I give the kids a new swing set accessory for their play set. It keeps it new and fresh with very little work. When the kids get sick of one thing, I just switch it out. Last year I made them the “twirl and hurl” swing out of an old bike.
I tried to find skateboards for cheap, but couldn’t. So my husband used some scrap wood and rope we had in the garage.
Final Cost: $0
These were easy, easy, easy. However I am a little worried that B– might swing them over his head and use it as a flail. These might have to disappear. I was also worried about them being slippery, so I used some bathtub safety treads I bought at the Dollar Store. I had bought some over a year ago and never used them on their intended project, so it was nice to finally get some use out of them.
Final Cost: $0
This was my stroller when I was a little girl. I can’t believe my mom saved it this long! The original fabric seat had started to disintegrate, so I replaced it. I was smart and secured the back with Velcro. That way if somebody besides a doll sits in it, it will just come undone. We’ve already broken one stroller from G– sitting in it and I didn’t want to break this one too. I also gave it a good scrub with Soft Scrub and a used dryer sheet. It works wonders.
Final Cost: $0
Now that G– is learning to read, it is time for her to have her own set of scriptures. We don’t plan on getting her a nice set until she is 8, but I like my kids to have one of the cheaper versions to take to church with them. I was surprised but this was one of her favorites this year. She has been wearing her scriptures around with her constantly and was so excited to pull her own set out when we did scripture study this morning. Warms my heart!
To carry her scriptures I made this super cute scripture bag.
Grandma Sippy Cups
It is fun to have special things at grandma’s house, so I made custom cups using vinyl for a dear friend’s grand kids. That way they have their own special cup when they visit and she has a sippy cup on hand if she needs it! I got busy and completely forgot to take photos. Bummer… You will just have to believe me when I tell you that they were cute!
Since starting to use birthstones on my charm bracelets, I have had fun experimenting with some other jewelry-making techniques. This year I bought some jewelry wire and made these two necklaces. One is for my sister and has the birthstones of her kids. I love the temple charm because it is a reminder that their family is forever.
The other necklace includes all the grand kids’ birthstones.
These were so much fun to make! I used Beadalon Artistic 20-gauge wire and loved how it looked and how easy it was to work with.
Shopping for my dad is so stinking hard. He usually just wants very specific tools and a drill bit hardly feels sentimental. So this year I made him this vintage wood sign for his woodworking shop. I love it!
I like to involve the kids in gift giving and am careful to find something they can make every year. I think you can’t really feel what Christmas is about unless there are some gifts from you under the tree. I found these crayon ornaments and I knew we had to do them. They were very easy and could be done with little help from me. The kids made the crayon shavings, stuffed them in the ornaments and held the blow dryer. I just held onto the ornaments with pliers so that they wouldn’t burn their little fingers on the hot glass. It heats up pretty fast.
I then used vinyl to put their names and the year on the ornament. You can even scan in their signature and trace it with your Silhouette software so that you can cut it into vinyl. It is a fun way to preserve what their handwriting looks like at this age.