I made 3 x 3″ gift cards from scrap paper that I made from a project I’ll show at the end of the video. I used 2 7/8″ x 2 7/8″ scrap to line my card base that was white Recollections heavyweight card stock. Then I added die cuts from pine dies I bought at Aliexpress, and here’s the link to the die. http://tinyurl.com/yc6fno8f I used two different colors of Touch 5 markers to make the branches look like they are varied in color. I used Art Glitter Glue to adhere the branches to the card front. I bought some cute resin pieces, and in this case, I used the Santa, and glued it onto the branches. The link to the Santa is, https://tinyurl.com/ybau5qg5 I bought the Season’s Greeting die from Peachy Cheap, a site that sends you an email every day for one item that they sell for that day only. Here’s the link to it. https://www.peachycheap.com/ I attached the Season’s Greeting in red foil above my Santa and used an old Stampin’ Up stamp inside the card. I showed the rest of the cards I’d made to send to the ladies in Puerto Rico that we had adopted to send crafty things to for Christmas. I also wanted to show the projects I’ve made to give to a friend who works at an assisted living facility and I wanted her to be able to decorate the doors of residents who don’t have any family to visit them. I have a video where I show making the frames and will attach it at the end of the video.
I went shopping today with my girlfriend, and we finished most of her shopping. Since I have very few people to shop for, my work is pretty much done. I am decorating a couple of stockings I bought for the dogs, since we don’t have kids, our dogs get as much doggy toys and treats as we can shove in their stockings. It’s not that I think they are kids and deserve a stocking, it’s just easier to shove unwrapped toys/treats into a stocking, than anything else I can think of.
I’m also going to make the video on Christmas crackers. If I didn’t mention it already, my girlfriend and I perfected our own Christmas cracker system yesterday, but I was too tired to complete the video. It’s important the I don’t waste the opportunity to show how to make the traditional Christmas cracker, as others have made them on video, but don’t show the cracker or the other components that make them like the English do. I wanted to actually make mine crack, because the videos I’ve seen, only show either how to make the cracker (without exploding it), or how to make the cracker without including the explosive device. No, it doesn’t actually explode, but it does make a loud popping noise…at least the ones we tested yesterday did. Of course that wasn’t on video..once I’m on video, you never know what could happen. I might not get any popping, or I might burn down the house–it’s really a toss up. I guess you’ll have to watch the video to decide what happens. I’m seriously hoping it won’t be an ugly experience, but I have had so many fails, that I don’t want to get my hopes up for a positive outcome…
I’ve made so many different crafty videos for Christmas this year, that I’m not sure if Rich will be able to put all of the videos up before Christmas. I guess I should take a break, but I really haven’t made my Christmas cards yet. That’s the crazy part about doing YouTube videos, there are so many ideas, but timing is everything. I know a lot of crafters do a Christmas in July theme, but I just can’t make myself do that. I admire and respect people that can plan that far ahead. but I’m just not one of them. I am great at shopping early, and if I find something in March that I think someone would like for their birthday or Christmas, I buy it. But decorating and card making, I just can’t bring myself to make anything Christmasy while the sun is shining. Our summers are so short, that I really don’t like to bring on the inevitable snowy season, and that’s probably the main reason I put off my projects for Christmas. I love making Halloween and fall inspired projects and can’t make Christmas things before I make those, so it pushes back my Christmas season until November. If you think about making two or three videos per week, it really doesn’t give me a ton of time to fit in a lot of Christmas videos. Maybe next year I’ll plan differently, but I really doubt it…we’ll be having this same discussion mid December, 2018..you can look forward to it..darn.
I took 12″ cardstock and cut it into 3/4″ strips. I had found a wooden circle wreath called a 6″ floral craft ring that I got at Michaels for around $1. I painted it with paint I had bought from the Dollar Tree to give the background a similar color to the paper I was using. After it dried, I started adding the strips. Using wet glue (or a glue stick), wrap the strips around the ring and make sure the ends meet and that the paper even so you won’t see the back. Overlap the strips on the circle form and continue the process the whole way around the wreath form. Make sure you use enough glue so your strips really stay together.
The punch I showed didn’t work, so I had to kick it to the curb and cut the notches out of the paper.
I ran out of my original paper and had to supplement with a matching gold glittery paper…The gold paper was too boring, so I added red pearls to the gold strips, as well as a line of the red pearls in the center piece of gold paper.
I used a deer from the Dollar Tree, and added some bling to it, by adding a cow bell on thin wire and a gold bow. I added some glue to the bow to hold it in place. I added two layers of foam tape to the back of the deer and wet glue on top and under the foam tape so it would stick to the glitter and offset the deer. I put a hanger on the back by wrapping a chenille pipe cleaner around one of the papers.
We went shopping today and made it our first annual “buy gifts for ourselves event.” We spent, at the most, fifteen minutes in one store, and had to buy at least five gifts for ourselves for a maximum of $25 during the entire shopping trip. It was a lot of fun. Rich bought himself socks, a brush to clean his gas grill, three books and a Yankee Candle device that makes our cars smell good. I found the Yankee Candle device (I’d never seen them before), and I bought one as well…I also bought a hard covered Mandala coloring book, a can of pumpkin spice room spray, lipstick, and a couple of small charms for on my Davinci bracelet. We both ended up going over our limits by $2, which we considered fair enough, since we were so close to our budgeted amount.
I have to say that it was a lot of fun, and Rich wants to do it again next year. It was entertaining trying to find things quickly and on a budget. We had found some old gift cards with minimal amounts on them, and used those as well. The monies on the gift cards were considered extra, so we didn’t count the gifts we bought with them in our totals.
All in all, I really recommend doing this, because it gave us something fun to do for Christmas gifts and we’re able to wrap each others gifts and still give them to each other on Christmas. Of course, we always buy each other a Christmas ornament, (even though we don’t put the large tree up anymore), and I need to find one I think he will like. I have some ideas, but haven’t found exactly what I’m looking for as of yet. The first year we were married, we bought each other a Christmas ornament….if you look at the number of years that have passed, we now have seventy ornaments that we’ve given each other. We also collect the Hallmark Frosty Friends series and an angel series from Hallmark, so we have about one hundred thirty ornaments in those collections alone. It used to take Rich forever to put up our tree, but times have changed and we’re not as ambitious as we used to be, so we put a smaller tree up and minimally decorate it. All right, to be completely honest, we decorated this tree a few years ago, and once the season is over, we cover it with a huge plastic bag, and put it away for the next year.
I remember when I was a kid, that our aunt used to do that with her tree and I was so disappointed that she didn’t take time to decorate her tree….I get it now…if we had little kids to entertain with our decorations, it would be different, but with just the two of us, and minimal guests, there’s no point in spending hours decorating. We’re happy that we do as much decorating as we do….Rich thought he wanted one of the light shows that will shine through a window and make it look like Santa is inside the house..It also has Halloween scenes that are really spooky. It was over $50, and Rich really wanted it, mainly for Halloween. I bought it and he tried it out and decided it was so blurry that you can’t tell what’s going on in the video, so back it went. I think the tree is plenty.
Some days you just need to take a break. After filling and mailing the boxes yesterday, I was exhausted. I’m not good at standing for really long periods of time, and that’s what filling and taping the boxes required. I’m not whining, well trying not to whine, just saying how it is. So I gave myself permission to watch it snow and hope some deer would wander by for dinner. Have I mentioned the deer before? Probably so, but I’ll talk about them again. When I was a kid, my dad explained that if we don’t hunt the deer, they become over populated and starve to death. That sentiment really stuck with me, and when I married a “city boy” who isn’t a hunter, we talked about the plight of the deer and how we could make a small difference for them. Many years ago, I talked to a customer of the bank who was a farmer, and asked him where I could buy corn. He said he could supply a ton of corn (literally, a ton), and we struck a deal that I would buy my corn from him. So every year, the week before Thanksgiving, we load up the car with corn. Ten bags of corn is a ton, in case you wondered. We don’t feed the deer until the first ground cover of snow, then we keep feeding them until spring. We’ve only had a couple of years where we’ve had so much snow, we’ve had to buy more. Our “herd” can range up to twenty five deer, and they come all times of the day and night. Lately, they’ve been coming in the middle of the night, and I think it’s because Honey still barks when she sees them. She’s never allowed anywhere near them, but we have a room that’s mostly windows, and the dogs and I spend a lot of time there. I think it’s like watching television for them, as they sit and watch the wildlife in our back yard. The other dogs know not to bark at the animals, because the animals run away, and they lose whatever they were “watching on tv.”
For the most part, our deer are not skinny, and that makes us feel like we are doing a good thing. I remember telling someone we would be feeding deer, and they said, “Once you feed them, you can’t stop, as they rely on that food source.” I’ve never heard a statement that is more true. As soon as the food is there, so are the deer. I used to worry about them getting hit by cars, but they seem to know where the road is, and come out of the woods behind our house, roam around our yard, and go back into the woods. They don’t travel in the direction of the road, and I’m relieved that they don’t. So that’s my deer story, and I know they carry deer ticks and other diseases, but as I said, we don’t allow our dogs anywhere near where the deer are, and we’ve been feeding them for at least fifteen years.
I have been so crazy busy in the craft room, and I’m so excited with the projects that I’ve finished. I’ve made at least fifteen items to give to my friend for her assisted living facility, and then I started making book marks for her as well. I made at least six book marks, and made a date to meet my friend for supper on Monday to deliver the goods.
But on an even bigger note, I FINALLY mailed all of the boxes to Puerto Rico. I know it sounds like it’s not that big of a deal, but I had those boxes so full of goodies, I think they will be amazed at how much was crammed into those boxes. They each weighed at least five pounds, and every one had it’s on one-of-a-kind card from me, as well as a typed letter explaining who helped put it together. I’m really proud of the project and I realize it started a couple of months ago, but the end result is that these eleven ladies will get their boxes in time to play together before the holidays. I’m so happy and relieved that they are in the mail.
It seems like I had something else that I wanted to talk about, but just can’t seem to remember what it was. My craft room is looking a lot better, because I’ve gotten the luggage closed, and I’m happy to report that I feel like I have a handle on all things Christmas (finally.)
One of my closest friends will be coming over in the next couple of days and we’re going to make traditional Christmas Crackers. It’s like a popper, but it has a crown (which all traditional crackers have), as well as a joke or activity, a treat of some kind, and of course the popper. I’m making mine with the New Year’s Eve style popper, where you pull the string and confetti comes out. I have notes on how to insert it into my cracker to make it work and not blow confetti everywhere. I’m hoping we’ll be making these in the next couple of days, but have so many videos, that I’ll have to rearrange the order of them, to make sure people have time to make these before the holidays. So many projects, so little time. I always say I’m going to start my Christmas videos a lot earlier in the year, but never get inspired until after Halloween. Maybe 2018 is the year, but I doubt it.