Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Holiday Greetings!

So I don't know how you all get your holiday cards out, but I ask my DH to make me some paper & some stars! And he did just that! He made the stars out of lauhala. Here's a close up...please excuse the smudge that's still on my camera lens!!!
Here he is in production!
After all of that, it was easy to find a greeting to add to the inside, & then sign & address the cards & envelopes! How blessed am I to have such a creative partner! Thanks, honey! And a very Happy New Year to everyone!

Handmade Boxes

Now all those handmade gifts needed handmade boxes...well most did! So here we were making boxes! I did the paper ones...

...and Ron decorated some lauhala ones he found at the store! They were very plain until he added his special touch!

Not just beads!

Just so you know I don't just bead, here's some dish towels I embroidered as holiday gifts! Embroidery today sure isn't like it used to be! The stitches are the same, but designs are way different than I remember. It was fun to do something I hadn't in a long time!

A Very Beadie Christmas!

In no particular order, here are some of the beaded gifts I made this year. Some were ornaments, a couple were Prayer Pockets, & one was a special fetish holder. I actually forgot to take pics of several others I made!!! But this will give you an idea of what a "Handmade Holiday" is all about. All of the beaded parts are off-loom beading square stitch one bead at a time. Most had at least 600 beads per item! I had very busy fingers!

I thought I was too sick to post all these today, but just decided I wanted to get 'em all done before the end of the year! Only 3 more posts to go, then on to the New Year!

Cookie Day!!!

Cookie Day!

In our family we have a tradition called Cookie Day that my Italian Grandma started when she came to this country. She would make traditional Italian cookies to give to neighbors at Christmas. Well, over the years this tradition grew & evolved as new family members came along! Different members wanted different kinds of cookies! So now we make all different kinds of cookies...but the main cookie is still what we call Italian Finger Cookies!

We choose a date early in December that we all can get together & matter where we live! And that includes all the MEN in the family! (They make excellent kneaders, stirrers of batter & frosters!)

So this year Ron & I made our cookies in Hawaii. We made the gingerbread people & finger cookies you see above & directly below.

Then in Washington State, my family, some friends & neighbors all got together on the same day at my sister's house! They never took a picture of all the final cookies, but every table & counter was covered. Here they are covering one table with foil to get ready for cookies...and my nephew is mixing up a big batch of finger cookies!

This was my great-niece's first year of really helping! She truly was an Angel Helper with her mom at her side! (Notice those guys forming cookies too!)

And of course her Auntie, & Goddessmother, had to get up close & personal with helping her!

Finally we have my sister transferring cookies & my mom dipping some others in powdered sugar.

One of my nieces made pasta for everyone to eat for dinner, & my sister made chili. (We had Ron's invention of hot dogs in cookie dough! It's really good!) We all had to get some good energy since this event takes all day & goes well into the night! Then everyone gets to take a whole bunch home to share with their neighbors! We put ours in decorated tins & packages to deliver to our neighbors here in Hawaii. I am so grateful that my Grandma started this tradition so many years ago, & now we have 4 generations continuing her legacy!
Here's to you, Grandma!

Holiday Beaded Thread Spool Ornaments

Here's some more thread spool ornaments I beaded for friends & family. Now that they received them, I can start showing some of the different things I made as gifts.
I sure hope they liked them. They're tiny, but take some time to bead them one bead at a time!

Holiday Birthday gift

This was a little birthday present I made for a pal. Gotta be hard having a birthday during the holidays! I hope he liked it anyway...'cuz it was made with lots of love! It was beaded over a tiny thread spool, & I attached buttons & a bell with the ribbon hanger.

Holiday swap with my pal!

We kept up our swaps until the holidays overwhelmed us! Here's the 4 ATCs (Artist Trading Cards for those who don't know) I made for our bi-monthly exchange. Not sure if you can see in the first picture, but at the top left is another ATC I worked on using some black stock my pal gave me. I like how it looked with the colored pencils.

But I also liked my little watercolor snowpeople! They are all unique just like we are! And yes, the mountains on 2 islands in Hawaii do get snow! Haven't ever seen a real snowperson here yet tho'! However, there are ALOT of inflatable ones!

How does his garden grow?

Since it had been exactly one month since Ron had planted his small garden, on the 28th of December I took these pictures to show how quickly things are growing! The vines were clear up to the top!
Here are our peas flowering...and we already have some beans! We are sharing their leaves with some bugs, so Ron recently sprayed a soap wash on 'em!
And here is our squash! He has some different varieties growing, so it will be fun to see what we get. It appears that the bugs that eat bean leaves don't like squash leaves!

We'll see what kind of harvest we have by January 28th!

Happy New Year!

Wow! I can't believe it's been over a month since I posted! And I'm not sure I'll get to much today either. As you can see by that big mug of tea, I'm under the weather & don't have much energy to post about all the holiday fun we had this year! It was truly a wonderful, creative, holiday! "Mele", my singing dog, kept me company during the days of crafting! He has the most gruff voice! And his mouth moves! A pal sent him to me last year & I just love him! Of course he sings "Mele Kalikimaka", which is Hawaiian for "Merry Christmas".

And here is probably one of my most favorite holiday decorations! It's Santa's workshop & it really is what our house feels like most of the year, but especially at the holidays. We really get to feel like elves then!
So, if I don't get to post much else today, here's to a peaceful & healthy New Year for all of us!!!