Monday, July 07, 2008

Made It Myself Monday: The Commitments


What 2 weeks since I posted? Oy. The Summer. It's crazed.
And I have Been Very Busy.
The only question remains, "who's training who?"

I also took a photography workshop.. and loved it.
Need to finish the last few assignments.
But maybe next week.


I decided to keep an older commitment to myself as well:
Last holiday season ( Yes, I am talking about it now...still, again, already.) I was Stressed Out. Not awful stress, but really busy. I committed myself to Handmade Holidays and I made something like 43 presents. I was cramming crafting into each spare second. The house was a wreck. We didn't get to baking until it was Way Late, leaving gobs of unfinished cookies lingering well into my New Years Resolutions (and the retreat of all the people who were supposed to help me eat them!)...
and I said to myself,
"Self, next year let's be done before Thanksgiving."
Now my self has heard this all before, and my self thinks that often I am full of crap, under the guise of good intentions. But I surprised myself.
I have a plan... And I am making headway.


My plan is to give consumables. Stuff that is practical and doesn't last forever. Like jam, home canned tomatoes, and chutney ( this is must be done in summer stuff) also, potholders, dishtowels, candles, and calendars. Usable. Practical. Non Clutter. I'm making "Kitchen Baskets". Last month I made jam, this month, potholders: Betty Does Batch Crafting.

I am going to post my progress here. Probably ruining any major surprises for my blog reading loved ones... But if I can help even a couple more people have a Holiday Season that is full of more joy and less stress... I am sure I will be forgiven by those who love and know me well. (Especially once they try that jam!)

And speaking of PotHolders.... You could get some ideas from Pretty Little Potholders.





It's just the latest book that I am proud to be associated with...
I even made the back cover.

so? anyone else wanna be done really early?

26 comments:

I AM said...

You plan sounds almost exactly like mine! We started a little flickr group to encourage each other too. I hope that you'll join!

http://www.flickr.com/groups/handmadeholiday2008/

Tami said...

That sounds like a marvelous plan! I've given consumables to my grandparents for the last 7 years or so. They've mostly been See's Candies (my grandmother's favorite!) but I've also given phone cards, gas cards and groceries of things that they like but think are a bit extravagant such as salmon. What's nice is that they enjoy the gift and don't have anything else to add to the tchotkes already in the house. :-)

sherri (Tied Up In Ribbons) said...

congrats on the book. You are doing much better than I...I never quite get there until too close to the holidays....every year it is a new resolution.

Jenaveve said...

Sheer brilliance!
And if that isn't the cutest pup pic I've seen this year...

I have to get my hands on that book, I have been eyeing it off on a few different blogs - congrats for being part of it!

Melissa H said...

I know I won't be done early but I have been making jam and pickled stuff so I'll definitely save some for x-mas gifts. Love your idea of kitchen baskets!!

laura said...

This is exactly what I want to do...I plan to make baskets for everyone and to also include canned jam and potholders...I'm going for practical with passport holders for the travelers and journals too. My hard part is the men...I have three in my life to contend with and they are not as thrilled with handmade as they are with cds, dvds, books and PS2 games, so we may make a few exceptions what I hope is a mostly handmade holiday season.

Jennifer said...

This is too perfect; I, too, have the annual "self, let's be done by Thanksgiving so we can enjoy the holidays" conversation with myself and so far my track record is...not so good. LOVE the potholder action -- the book looks fab. Love the consumables idea (although no one begged me to do it again, the year I made homemade salsa...). I'm liking the idea of making people individually crafted cds of music I think they'd love -- is that pushing it? Love the potholders, though....

Frizz said...

Ahhhh - congrats on the new addition!! What a great pic of Coop. Love the ones in Flickr too. Pups are a little better subjects than cats. Mine will wait until they hear the shutter click then move.
Congrats on the book too - I'll check it out!!

Lauri said...

I say the same thing every year...maybe this year I could actually do it if there was some competition out there. lol!

I have NEVER EVER made jam or any other homemade foods that go in jars, but I would REALLY love to try! Any good and easy recipes out there???

I'm planning to do a lot of potholders and handmade soaps and candles, too. I think I need to join that flickr group I read about up there from " I Am"!

Anonymous said...

I wish I was creative! I love all your homemade gifts each year and look forward to them! Valerie

Nancy said...

you are such an inspiration! i fear there will be few/no homemade gifts chez belleepoque this year, but i will be looking to you as a model in all things as usual! hopefully next year will be different. also, those pot holders are BEAUTIFUL and I will certainly be checking out that book if there is a bitter betty creation to be found within.

The Mad Tatter said...

Well, I originally didn't have any plans to be early this year [I usually shop December 23 and get it all done in one fell swoop] but, inspired by your blog entry and spurred by the arrival of a replacement pedal for my mom's sewing machine, I think I too will try making presents this year and have them done before the Ides of December. [Thanksgiving is just a little too ambitious for me.]

Kimberly Miller said...

LOL - you sound like me. I had one of those holidays once, a few years back. I now make my Christmas cards in June or July, and from there, I just craft all year round and when something that I made catches my eye, I put it aside for a Christmas present.

Nice to know I'm not alone in my "self" reprimands. *grin*.
Creatively,
Kimberly
www.kimberleekreations.blogspot.com/

Mary Ellen said...

Just imagine what a lovely holiday it will be whan all you need to do is wrap your lovely gifts and avoid the ugly madhouse that is the mall. Thanks for the inspiration!

meg said...

We're expecting another baby in early November. I'm with you! Actually, I decided to forgo the handmade gifts this year...and then realized that I really do love Christmas gift crafting. AND I am a big fan of consumable/practical gifts. So keep bringing the inspiration, Woman! :)

Knitsonya said...

Your photos are GORGEOUS! And that pup is heart meltingly cute. You are such a shining example of preparedness that I can hardly stand it. I have to look away.

Kay aka dkswife said...

Really, I am already done. Bring on Christmas! :)

Kitschen Pink said...

Oh your so good! I've only just got used to the idea that summer is here! Christmas has got to be at least 15 months away! I find fudge goes down well and is quick and easy to make in abundance! We fill pretty tins with it. Slight caution - cheeky grandparents will keep coming back through the year for refils and top-ups! :-) xx

sulu-design said...

You are my hero. I love the consumable gift plan, and I super impressed that you're already on your way with it. I may be a big fat copy cat...

Rose said...

Just found your blog and love it. Read back to Mother's day entry. The handmade gifts sound perfect, thanks for the recipe.

livebird said...

Ohh! The puppy! Methinks that allowing people to pat and coo and snorgle said puppy would be gift enough - definitely a practical, nourishing and non-clutter gift.

What a delightful little guy. I hope there are many more pictures to come.

(Just keep him and his needleteeth out of the sewing stash - learnt that the hard way with mine...)

Anonymous said...

Dear BB -- Brilliant! You are an inspiration... I'm gonna get that Christmas job I do for a friend done early this year! And maybe some gifts too... what will be hot come December '08? hmmm knitting scarves in July seems a bit much... but maybe I can at least start the 100 hand made cards before Dec 23 this year... Love the Puppy! Lindy

woolanthropy said...

Christmas?!
I love the idea but my procrastinating ways always get the better of me. However you have planted a seed in my mind. potholders...hmmmmmm.

PĂ©itseoga said...

i like the potholder idea! and i probably really should sort all christmas presents before october this year...

Angelina said...

Have I missed something? Where did the puppy come from? Is it yours? What's his name? He's so damn cute!

The book looks great!!! I will have to see if my bookstore gets a copy. Maybe I'll order it if they don't.

I love the idea of early completion of all hand made gifts.

minnie said...

ooo, i almost bought that potholder book the other day. i mean, that's a great way to use up cute scraps!
i like to be almost done with holiday stuff by october. this year i am slacking and need to at least get my list going.
good consumables to make:
lemon curd and Kahlua
not necessarily together...

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