- Do you have a favorite gift that you love to give?
I love to think really hard and try to either purchase or make gifts that are personal and perfect for each person. I love giving things. It is true that it is better to give than to receive.
- If you’re making gifts this year, what are you making? (Post photos if you have some!)
I’m making matching nightgowns for Aidan and my niece, Kaelyn. Crayon rolls for all of the kids (complete with crayons and coloring books and hopefully muslin drawstring bags to put it all in). A doll for Aidan. Aprons for my best friend’s daughter and my cousin’s daughter. Aprons for Ryan’s aunts and grandmother. Decoupaged clothespins for my teacher friends. Clothes for Aidan.
- Do you have any good stories about handcrafted gifts you’ve given or received?
My mother made me clothes my whole life growing up. My favorite memory of receiving something she made me was when I was about 8 or 9. We went to Foley’s and I saw a beautiful white lace dress. I loved it and thought it was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. I told my mom I wanted it and she told me that it was too expensive. So, I went on with life and that Christmas I opened a box and saw the exact dress. My mother had made it for me. Now I know how difficult it must’ve been for her to sew on all that lace in addition to hiding it from me while she worked a full time job. She must’ve sewed it late at night and early in the mornings before I woke up.
- Do you have any great gift compilation ideas (a grouping of gifts just perfect for certain recipients?)
I’m putting together some cute gift compilations for kids. The crayon rolls, crayons and coloring books in drawstring muslin bags are for Aidan’s cousins. I found the cutest Pink Princess Cookbook so I got 2 of those to go along with some pink potholders and I’m making pink aprons to go along with them. Sure one of the recipients of that gift is only 7 months old but its something for her mother to look forward to when she gets older.
- Name one thing on your personal wish list.
I would love a good collection of wool felt. That and about 4 more hours in a day to have to just sew and craft. And a massage. 😉
- Do you make and sell things that would make fantastic gifts?
I don’t sell anything yet. I got Craft, Inc. and have really been thinking about starting an Etsy shop after the new year. I’d probably sell mostly kids stuff.
- What is your favorite family holiday tradition?
My family always has a sandwich supper on Christmas Eve. That got started because when my brother and I were younger we kept bugging my mom for us to hurry up and open our presents (we opened our gifts on Christmas Eve when I was young). Mom said we could open gifts when we were done eating dinner and the kitchen was clean. So, when she asked us what we wanted for Christmas Eve dinner, we said sandwiches because it’s quick and easy to clean up. The tradition stuck. My grandparents picked it up as well as other family members. We’ll do it this year as well, even though we’re opening gifts on Christmas Day now.
- Have you started any new traditions with your family that you didn’t practice growing up?
Not really, mostly because we still go back to our extended families for the holiday. We haven’t spent a Christmas on our own yet.
- What do you love most about the holiday season?
I love being with family, going to church and now I especially love that Aidan understands Santa Claus and Christmas and all that. She loves looking at Christmas lights, watching all my old favorite Christmas specials and seeing the big Christmas tree at church. I love seeing that.
- What do you like least about the holiday season?
I hate that it starts pretty much as soon as the 4th of July is over. By the 25th of December, I am completely sick of Christmas and want to take the tree down as soon as the presents are opened. I hate the tacky, junk “gifts” that stores put out this time of year. Why can’t it all be about gifts of quality rather than quantity? I fear looking like a cheapskate because outside of the books we got her, we got Aidan a few truly quality gifts and gifts that I’ve made myself. But, in the scheme of things, the items we give her can and will last a lifetime while all the junk that other kids get will be broken and forgotten by the end of the week.
- Anyone close to your heart that you’ll be missing this year?
This will be the first Christmas in 6 years that Ryan and I won’t be together. It breaks my heart that he will miss the first Christmas that Aidan understands the holiday.
- What is your favorite holiday food?
My mom’s queso and her crab dip. I know, it’s weird but I love it and we always have those things on Christmas Eve.
- Do you have a great recipe to share?
Not off the top of my head. I usually don’t cook at Christmastime, my mom and Ryan’s family does. Maybe it’s time for me to grow up? Nah, I like being taken care of…I’m the caretaker the other 364 days of the year. It’s nice not having to worry about it for 1 day.