21 December 2008

Christmas Preparations

And I was under the mistaken impression that December would be quieter than November, and I would have more time to post. How mistaken was I?

In previous years, we've bought all our presents. We've made sure we get toys and items with long term playability, and preferably good quality and educational, but still all that shopping and deciding is a major undertaking especially at this time of year. This year, I've been looking around at all the toys in the shops, and been very disappointed in what was on offer. Most things are plastic, and have very little long term playability. Maybe it's DD's age, and the fact that things are becoming very commercialised (why does everything have either Dora the Explorer or Disney Princesses on it?), but I have found very little that I wanted to buy for her. We have purchased a couple of presents online, but the plan this year was/is to make the majority of DD's presents, as well as everyone else's.

Of course, being presents, and given the fact that many of the recipients read this blog, I can't even post any interesting pictures of all the crafting that is happening! The pic above is the beginning of DD's Waldorf doll, that is nearly finished now. I will write more about it and post some pictures after Christmas hopefully.

As if making all those presents weren't enough, I had this crazy idea half way through the month to make an advent calendar! We've been doing it slowly, doing a pocket a day (usually in a rush after DD is in bed!), and though it's nearly finished now, I'll save the final picture until the past pocket is on.

We've had a lot of fun with it though. Instead of going the commercial route for surprises for each pocket, I've been trying to stick with things that we've made ourselves, or things that are some sort of activity we can do with DD. In this picture, you can see the paper strips that were our first surprise, used to make paper chains. We've also had bubble mixture, Christmas cookie cutters, and a treasure hunt. It has been lots of fun, and I'm looking forward to making it a yearly tradition. Hopefully it won't be so stressful next year when the calendar is already made! (And hopefully I'll come up with some ideas throughout the year so that I'm prepared.)

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