In this crazy time of year it’s pretty easy to get carried away with over doing everything – trying to get everything just right – trying to make sure to finish everything on your to-do list – trying to make everyone happy – trying to be the perfect mother / wife / sister / friend… and in all this trying it is really easy to forget what is actually important about this time of year  – this time of year is about family, being together, celebrating your beliefs and your traditions in a loving and nurturing way. It’s about happiness and thankfulness — a time to put aside grudges and ‘issues’ and to just spend time with those you love the best.

So my tips for surviving and enjoying the next couple of weeks of frivolity, celebrations and traditions are to take a step back from your plans and assess what is really important to you — your sanity and time with family might be at the top of that list — so you might have to ditch those plans for perfectly wrapped homemade presents and just realise that you are human and can only do so much.

This year we have actually decided as a family that we are not going to be doing the whole present thing (much) and instead have opted for a whole family experience instead (a weekend in the big city with the Harry Potter exhibition and a hotel) to enjoy a little later in the year when the craziness dies down. The kids will have a little something under the tree each — just one or two things (a book, a board game, a special teacup) and Rob and I have opted to go shopping together after the holidays to buy each other a much needed new wallet. We will also all be making each other something — but again something that is not going to take a lot of time — just love — a little something to not get stressed about … my it is so easy to get caught up in what must be done rather than what you all really actually want to do – isn’t it?

So what will you be crossing off your list?


Repurpose produce bags for gift wrap [image above]

Print your own wrapping paper

Print your own fabric gift wrap

Tissue paper and doilies to dress up your gift wrap

Dress up a plain white gift wrap with string and a cute toy

Make gift bags from newspaper

Recycled printed pages for pretty wrapping

Textured gift wrapping ideas

make recycled bows from newspaper to dress up your gift wrap

lots more gift wrapping and other holiday ideas in Sweet Paul magazine


diy gingerbread house

by kath_red on 16/12/2010

in Food

ooh I love this one – not into all that candy myself – and it looks so pretty – includes a recipe and instructions to put it together - diy gingerbread house.


10 garlands to make

by kath_red on 16/12/2010

in Holidays

Make a crochet jingle bell garland [image above]

make a twisted felt garland

Make a needle-felt ball garland

Make a pinecone garland

Make a felt ball garland

Make a snowflake garland

Make a doily garland

Make a crochet triangle garland

Make this pompom straw garland

Make a folded felt garland


Make some mini lanterns [image above]

Make some jingle bell flowers [image above]

Make a geometric straw ornament

make sewn paint-chip card ornaments

Make a recycled holiday garland

Make a recycled paper garland

Make some poinsettia ornaments

Make a scrap mini wreath

Make some vintage snowflakes

Make a recycled german star wreath