Thursday, December 8, 2011

O, Christmas Tree...

With the holidays upon us, I have been... strangely busy. I'm not usually this busy. I did a crafter's open house last weekend, selling sock monkeys. It was a lot of fun, but a lot of work at the same time. Now it is time to start making Christmas gifts. So far I am off to a great start. Unfortunately I can't share very much about them because of obvious reasons.

I have collected 29 books so far for the book drive (see my Monkeys on a Mission blog). I'll be collecting through December 31st, so anyone who is interested in donating new kid or teen books, please email me or leave a comment!

We bought our Christmas tree from Hillcrest Farm this year (in Auburn, MA. I'm not sure if they have a website, but their storefront is The Farmer's Daughter. We get all our plants in the spring and summer form them as well). It cost a little extra, but not nearly as much as a real tree would have gone for about ten years ago. I didn't mind the extra $10 (versus Lowe's) because it was from a local farm and they have such friendly and helpful staff. There was a baby calf named Spooky there helping to sell trees (and I love nothing more than to cuddle with a calf!), as well as a gray Rex rabbit. There were lots of trees, as well as wreaths and arrangements and gifts.

This year we wanted a homemade Christmas. My husband and I have grown so tired of plastic and mass production. So we set the tree up, and got to work making ornaments. We let my son pick out a few of our old ornaments that he really liked, that were special to him, but the rest is all going to be origami, felt, kids' crafts and beadwork. Our neighbor is an artist, and she has painted a few ornaments for us over the years as well, which we treasure. My son put all the ornaments on the tree himself--it seemed to be something he was proud of so we designated him the official tree decorator. There are no lights, but that's fine--it saves electricity and the tree won't dry out as quickly. We do need a skirt for the tree, but I think I will just grab some pretty fabric and arrange it around the bottom.

I've been posting sock monkeys on my Etsy page. Remember, a portion of the proceeds of all my handmade goods ALWAYS goes to charity. This month it is for the Youth and Family Services book drive, next month, it will be something different.

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