Monday, November 26, 2012

Nativity Ornaments

Five or six years ago, my family began the tradition of making a special batch ornaments to give out to various people we come into contact with throughout the Advent season.  We give them to sales people, delivery drivers, store clerks, postal employees, waiters, etc.  

We also drive around throughout the season to look at Christmas lights.  Each night, we vote on a few favorite houses and knock on those doors to deliver our ornaments as prizes to those families.  

No matter how God chooses to have our paths cross, the recipients are always blessed and truly grateful.  In addition to thank you, we often get smiles, tears and hugs.  The biggest blessing to us, however, is bringing joy and spreading God's love to others.    

For several years, we have made Christmas Nails (tutorial here).  This year, however, we wanted to do something different.  I was looking through my craft supplies and found some wooden peg dolls and eggs.  I purchased these to make a set of dolls as a gift, but didn't end up making them. I decided to try making nativity ornaments with them.  I am so excited about how they turned out!!  I only had enough supplies today to make 4 of them, but I ordered more and can't wait to get them all made!!  

I will be posting a tutorial once those supplies come in.  I will mention that these were EASY!  It only took me about 10 minutes to make the first 4, including allowing the paint to dry.  

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Thankful Tree

It just looks prettier and prettier each day!  Here it is this morning (11/8/12)

I can't lie, my family is very excited about Christmas.  We love the excitement of the season, and can't wait to begin our Advent activities.

That being said, we want to be sure not to skip over Thanksgiving.  We are so incredibly blessed, and want to dedicate the next few weeks to truly focusing on those blessings and being thankful to God for His provision.

We decided to make a "Thankful Tree" to help us concentrate on the many things we are, indeed, thankful for.  Our tree is about 4 feet tall and is a focal point in our living room.  
I used brown gift wrap/packing paper for the trunk and cut the leaves out of construction paper.  The leaves aren't pretty, but the thoughts on them are absolutely beautiful!  Every day between now and Thanksgiving, the four of us will each write something we are thankful for onto a leaf and attach it to our tree.  By Thanksgiving, there will be 88 things to thank God for on our Thankful Tree!!  

Tip:  Japanese Washi tape comes right off the wall leaving no marks and causing no damage.