Holiday Crafts


For the first time I tried making my own wreath. My mom and I were walking one morning and spied a big pile of cedar branches on the curb. Since it was near our houses, we returned after our walk and gathered up armfuls of it to bring home. Had we brought a basket or wheelbarrow, we could have had some bittersweet and other branches with red berries. It must have been the neighborhood pre-winter trimming days.

It started as a big ol' pile:

Then I took our big garden clippers and nopped off the top leafy bits and about 6 inches of branch. Just as the kids and I returned home from school, it started snowing hard, so I decided to work on the wreath outside while they tried sledding on our side yard. My mom found a roll of green florist's wire, and I held a couple of the stems together as one, adding another two every couple of inches and trying to turn them all about 60 degrees clockwise. When the garland looked longer than my arm, I bent the ends together and wired them together.

The circle wobbled quite a bit, so I brought it in and fleshed it out on the table, adding more branches all the way around and wrapping the heck out of it with the wire.  I had to go around once more adding and wrapping, and then it seemed sturdier, so I slipped in a few more leafy bits just to make it look fresh. Stringing the jingle bells on the gold ribbon and wrapping it proved fun and easy, and the big bow gave me a good reason to use some of the fancy ribbon from my year abroad in India lo, those many years ago.

It looks like a real wreath, to my mild surprise, and hasn't fallen down, so I'll count that as a victory for recycling. One of these days I'd like to use the rest of the branches for garlands.

In gift news, well, here's one finished: a set of napkins for my mom and dad.


My dad loves fruit, and pears in particular, so I thought of them when I saw two fat quarters of this juicy fabric at Stitcher's Crossing.
The gingham from stash rounded out the set of six.

We're supposed to get lots more snow here, so everyone drive safe and enjoy…


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