Monday, November 3, 2008

Christmas Cards and a late entry

My co-authors did a great job last week of giving you ideas for homemade gifts. I had my idea typed out but it was on the computer that isn't working so well, so you're getting my suggestion this week....PLUS we will be talking about Christmas cards this week.

First my idea for homemade gifts: So many times, especially for young couples, money is in short supply. And this year, many are in the same bank vault--the funds just aren't available.

I read the following tip from one of Emilie Barnes' books, famous for her home tips, teas and hospitality hints. Emilie had a friend who had suffered a great loss. Emilie could have invited her friend to lunch. She could have invited her to her own home for a meal, but she chose a route that provided an outing with a twist. She invited this friend to go to the park, telling her she'd supply the snacks.

Emilie made a simple tea party to take to the park. It wasn't elaborate, but she did just enough to make it an outing. She put hot tea into a thermos and few things to accompany the tea. I don't remember all she packed in the basket, but I'm thinking a few finger sandwiches, whole fresh fruit and scones with lemon curd might be nice, but don't focus on the food too much. The whole idea was to get her friend out into the shunshine, "Out in the Fields With God," like our suggestions for getting your family outdoors at Christmas Time., chapter three in A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts.

Emilie's compassion and hospitatlity aided her friend's healing as she took in the vitality of God's green work, the natural world where cycles are evident in growth, leaves falling and leaves sprouting again. Do you have a friend who would benefit from one on one time with you in the great outdoors? Phone them, make a date, and pick a serene inspirational view. Pack a basket with hot chocolate and comfort food, and go by and get your friend. Who knows you may just help restore their soul.....

Second, this weeks topic Christmas cards: If you have a copy of A Scrapbook of Chirstmas Firsts, you'll find a history of Christmas greeting cards and a story about a fatherless girl which involved seasonal cards, and there's a great suggestion for ways to help your family connect with the folk who send you cards and family newsletters.

In our home, I display the cards we receive on a bought holder. It's circular, with wire circles overlapping which allow me to slip the cards underneath the wires. Mine has a metal cut-out angel at the top. When it's filled, it makes a wreath of cards from all the well wishes from our friends and family.

How do you display your cards? Do you send out a newsletter or cards? Have you decided to leave off mailing out cards? Share your traditions or a story about a special Christmas card.


Jason & Bethany Morford said...

We always displayed our cards around the doorways in our house. It was exciting to have to use more than one doorway!
I just discovered your blog, and was quite excited.
I do have a quick question. I am an elementary school teacher on a very limited budget. Every Christmas, I buy or make something for each of my students. Do you have any good inexpensive, homemade, kid-friendly gift ideas?

Cathy Messecar said...

Hi, so happy you found the blog. My idea is old fashioned, but my grandsons loved making their own beanbags. The small ones you toss like a ball. They're different from all the things that use batteries, and the tossing about is fun and different games can be played such as hot potato., or placing a heavy bowl on the floor and trying to pitch the bag into it.

I like to use soft calico cotton, doubled for strength. If you know of a rock yard nearby, you can get a mop bucket full of gem sand or pea gravel for filler, actually the same product but different folk call it different names. In fact the owner of rock yard might let you have such a small dab. we would. Do you live near Montgomery, TX?

Anyway, if you had the little pockets of fabric pre-sewn. The kiddos, depending upon their age, could choose what color they wanted for their "bean" bag, help you fill it and then you could handsew the opening with stout thread or sew by machine at home. They might like a gift they'd had a hand in constructing and you could do a little history teaching about homemade gifts at Christmas...Cathy Messecar, co-author A Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts

Brenda Nixon said...

Welcome to our blog (I'm one of the co-authors)! My daughter is studying to be an elementary school teacher and I'm an author to those who live/work with kids.

For inexpensive, homemade gift ideas for your classroom kids, may I suggest:

Homemade playdough;
Cookies bagged in colorful wrap;
Certificates to museums;
Gift certificates to a play or musical;
(when you approach an organization, tell 'em you're trying to find affordable kid-friendly gifts, they'll either donate or give you a quantity discount) or
A certificate from you promising something special like a free pencil, new ruler, or extra recess. The kids can use their certificate when they choose.

Need more ideas? Try this site for frugal crafts and homemade gifts:

Anonymous said...

It’s Christmas again!! A time to cherish the beautiful white snow, smiling snowman, brightness of the Christmas d├ęcor and the yummy candies and cakes! From November onwards it becomes impossible to forget that Christmas is coming. Well to be honest I personally wait for it so that I can return home to meet my parents and girlfriend of course!
With the passage of time lots of things about the celebration of Christmas has changed. I still remember when I was a kid, mom use to wait near the phone so that she becomes the first one to pick my brother call. We all use to have a fight as who is gonna be first to talk to him. Then I use to visit my relatives and friends with my parents who stayed near by.But now the net world has changed everything, especially the ecard trend. It’s so easy now to connect with our loved ones especially when you have so many ecard sites! One of free Christmas ecard site Being a new website really has fresh and cool greetings. The best part is if I write too regarding some card or idea they do take it seriously. Although the site has several errors but cards are really cool! So guys why don’t you check it out, you will also get the right ecard you are looking for! And if any one of you knows any other fresh ecard website do let me know!