Saturday, February 27, 2010

The gift of homemade

As you know we've had a couple birthday's in these parts over the past month and a half. When planning the parties I almost asked for no gifts. We have so very many toys. But then I remembered how much fun it is to open presents at a birthday party. So we took a trick from a friend and asked for second hand or homemade gifts. What a treat! With just a little bit of imagination and creativity our friends made some wonderful toys for the girls. Here are a few.

This is Mister Fidget. He is a woodland gnome who likes to travel. He showed up on Nonie's birthday. He tells me stories of this travels and I share them with the girls. Or at least that is what we told the children. In truth he was created by my good friend Courtney. After she made him one evening she put him up on the mantle out of reach of her kiddos so Mr. Fidget would make it to Nonie's birthday. When they woke up the next morning they asked about him and on the fly Courtney made up his story. Hence the birth of Mr. Fidget.
These wool felt petit fours are now a staple in our toy kitchen. My friend Barbara hand stitched them. So you don't even need a sewing machine to be creative.

This little doll's pants and hat are made of an old reclaimed sweater. In her bag she had a treasure. It was a carefully picked acorn.
This is a felt pizza with felt toppings. This pizza is always 'baking' in our play kitchen.

Homemade gifts don't have to be elaborate or difficult to make. I think we all to often forget that a child is happy to play with something less than perfect. We adults sometimes hold standards of perfection that our children don't see or care about.

But let me tell you what I liked most about this hand made gift idea: that the kids really got into it. When the children saw these gifts being made they wanted to create or give something too. We got acorns and nuts and special rocks. It became more than trudging to the store to buy just another gift. It became about giving a bit of ones self, about giving, not buying. And that is why I liked these birthday so very much. Thank you to all our wonderful friends. Your creativity is contagious!

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