More Ornaments Exchanging

You know me, I really love making ornaments, and exchanging them with creative friends. This is the second year I’ve exchanged ornaments with my friend Cheryl. Cheryl has had a crazy busy few months, so I was happy she still wanted to do our exchange. She always includes the cutest goodies in her package. I especially adore these felt gingerbread houses she made for me this year! I love all things gingerbread, so these fit in perfectly on our tree. Exchanging handmade treasures with friends thousands of miles away makes celebrating the holiday season even more special. I am so thankful for your generosity and creative spirit, my friends!

Christmas in July Ornament Swap – Planning

UPDATE: Ornament swap is closed now (as of July 6, 2010). Thanks for the interest!

I usually start thinking about crafts and gifts for Christmas the week before Christmas. I am an “in the moment” kind of person! Last Christmas, I participated in two ornament exchanges, one with a friend and one with a blogger who would become a friend. I love making ornaments and exchanging them.

I am starting to get my thoughts organized for our Christmas in July Ornament Swap.

I even made a button for us to spread the word! Here’s the code to copy if you want to post it to your blog. For now, it will just link you back to my blog.

UPDATE: I got some feedback that my original code didn’t work, so try this: (thanks Vicki for your help!)

<center><a href=”” target=”_blank”><img src=”” /></a>

If you are interested in participating, I have a few questions:

1. Should partners be assigned where you are exchanging with the same person who has your name?

2. Or, should partners be random and anonymous?

3. Or, should we exchange in groups, so for example, you would make five of the same ornament to send to five people?

4. Should we exchange just ornaments, or do you want to include another little crafty project of your choice, such as a potholder, mini quilt, patchwork card, pincushion, favorite holiday recipe, or whatever your fancy?

I have a couple giveaway items planned for participants in the swap too, so stay tuned!

I am hoping to open up the sign-ups in a couple weeks, around the end of June. I’m thinking our deadline to mail our crafty items should be the last week in July. Let me know in the comments or an email what you are up for, if you are interested in participating. Remember, it’s summer so we want to keep it simple!

Mini Quilt in the Mail

I came home from a boring day of work yesterday to a package in the mail. What a great way to brighten up my day! It was a mini quilt from my partner in the Spring Blooms Mini Quilt Swap.

Mini quilt from my partnerMy partner was Syliva. Her card says she is a mixed media textile artist. Boy, I’ll say – with the beautiful work she shared with me! This mini quilt offers a mixture of fabrics, applique flowers, various threads and machine stitching, as well as hand stitching, all creating different textures and patterns.

Sylvia's card

Check out her blog and more of her beautiful works of art. Thank you so much, Sylvia!

By the way, have you signed up for the Summertime Mini Quilt Swap? I think the deadline was yesterday, July 6, but you might still be able to get in.

Holiday Traditions

Like most families, my family has a lot of traditions.  Since my brother, sister and I are grown up and have families of our own, those traditions with my parents have changed over the years.  We have also added new traditions over the years with our new families.

I participated in Sew Liberated‘s Holiday Traditions Exchange this year.  Meg at Sew Liberated matches two people to share  our crafts, cultural, and thoughtful reflections about what the holidays mean to our family.  This includes things like:

  1. a handmade holiday decoration,
  2. our family’s favorite holiday recipe,
  3. a “tradition” tutorial, and
  4. a mix CD of our favorite holiday tunes.
Exchange Package

My partner is RaeAnn, who lives in southern California with her husband, three boys, and a little girl on the way!

My most favorite holiday tradition I wanted to share was our annual Cookie Day where all my aunts, uncles and cousins on my mom’s side get together the Saturday after Thanksgiving and bake as many cookies as possible.  Our record was 26 different kinds!  I made this apron for RaeAnn’s holiday baking.

Poinsettia Apron

I also made the patchwork basket picture below to hold a couple of my favorite Cookie Day recipes.  We are also a very crafty family so we also make lots of things for the holidays, mostly ornaments.  We usually exchange ornaments with each other so I knit these mini mittens, sweater and stocking ornaments for RaeAnn’s tree.  Those ornaments were packaged inside the patchwork drawstring bag.

Ornaments for ExchangeI included a copy of The Christmas Carol story, a play we try to see every holiday season; and the soundtrack from The Charlie Brown Christmas Special, a favorite in our house.

Exchange Book and CD

I hope my partner likes her package and shares in some holiday traditions from my house.  Merry Christmas, RaeAnn!

Be sure to go to the Holiday Traditions Exchange Flickr Group to see more photos of what others are exchanging this year.