We usually get out all of our Christmas decorations on the day after Thanksgiving. However, with a newborn in the house and an unexpected trip to Florida, we were a little late getting the house decorated. But it was fun just the same.
We always make a gingerbread house at Christmas but usually Stuart builds the foundation of the house for us. But this year, Nicholas and I tried to build the house by ourselves so it was up to me to build the foundation. Oh, what a mistake! It all started out well.
The walls stuck together just fine and I'm pretty sure I waited the required drying time before putting the roof on. But the roof was tricky. The roof panels didn't seem to line up and they didn't touch the top of the walls on all four sides so it never made a good seal all around to help hold it up. You can see the results for yourself...
Nicholas and I had a good laugh about our little gingerbread house that never was. But no crying over a demolished house. We just decorated the gingerbread pieces anyway. As it turned out, I think we had more fun than if the house had stayed together!
Another project we worked on was making a miniature Christmas tree for Grandmama Owen. She lives alone and I didn't think that she would likely do much in the way of decorating for Christmas. The thought of that just made me sad. When Stephen and I were little, she would put up Christmas decorations throughout the house and make little touches to make the house feel festive. She also put up an incredible tree full of colorful kid-themed decorations like Disney characters and such. It was such a fun tree! She always made Christmas special for us so I wanted to be sure she at least had a tree of her own, even if it wasn't as cool as the tree she made for us each year.
She loves reading and collecting books so I decided to make a book-themed tree. I searched all over for ornaments for a book lover, especially little ornaments of actual books. I couldn't find anything so I decided to make my own. I asked some advice from other crafty moms in my Early Childhood PTA and got some great ideas on how to make book ornaments. I got out some supplies and went to work.
I started with some thick foam board and cut them into little rectangles to make the pages of the book. Then I glued some colored cardstock around the pages to make the book cover. The book cover extended just a little bit past the pages in order to look more realistic. I wrote the title and author of any books that I know she likes and then threw in a few other classics as well. I also used some stamping ink to give the edges of the books some texture and make them look a little worn and distressed. Then I finished up by painting a coat of white glue over the book covers. It dried clear and gave a nice finish to the books plus protected them by making them a little more durable. Finally, I attached a string to the back of each book so it could hang on the tree.
Nicholas and I added some basic colored ornaments and some lights. Voila!