It’s beginning to look a lot like… ♫

Dare I say it? Christmas.

Christmas music has been playing in our local stores since November first. Yesterday the decorations were already up at the grocery store strip mall. I mean, really… it’s too early, even for this elf.

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE Christmas and everything that goes with it. I love shopping and wrapping and secrets and sparkly things and Christmas plays and lights… I really should have been an elf.  I was 10 years old  and in 5th grade when my (very mean) best friend insisted Santa wasn’t real. I still don’t believe her.

That’s me on the right, listening intently to what my future boss had to say. 😉

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Every Christmas Eve Mom would bundle us up and we’d pile into the car to go pick our Christmas tree. We’d drink hot chocolate while Daddy brought the tree into the house and set it in its stand. We’d make a big production of giving it lots of water, hang our stockings from the mantel and go to bed. I couldn’t sleep wondering if every noise I heard might be Santa on the roof. It’s a wonder I survived the anticipation at all.

Our first house in New Jersey was a wee little two-bedroom rancher. You could see the entire living room from our bedroom door. On Christmas morning my sister and I would fling open that door and freeze in absolute wonder. The bare tree we left in the stand was now fully decorated and lit, the only glow in the room, surrounded by presents. Pure magic!  >sigh<  Goose pimples.

 

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Our magical tree, 1968.

I was eight when we moved across town. Our new house had two stories and the impact of seeing that sight as we flew down the stairs on Christmas morning was a new brand of magic that didn’t disappoint.

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Christmas 1972: I’m the elf on the left. 

Two years later we moved to Florida,  and the tradition changed in a lot of ways, but Mom’s knack for the magical smoothed it over.

Then we grew up and learned a few things. Like Christmas trees are drastically discounted, or free, on Christmas Eve. And Mom and Dad had to wait until we were sleeping to begin decorating the tree, so they got maybe 30 minutes of sleep Christmas Eve. And it looks like a lot more presents when the room is only 8 feet wide. And the tree looks much bigger when you put it on the coffee table and you’re only four feet tall.
And knowing the secrets behind the magic makes it even stronger, because it was made with love.

But the best part of being a grown-up is that I get to make the magic now… after all, I did inherit Mom’s elf gene.

What’s Up, Wednesday?

I have a confession: I write blog posts in my head. They’re really amazing… perfectly worded with lots of pretty pictures full of creative inspiration.Then reality sets in- I can’t find the camera. There’s a bunch of stuff in the way. It’s gloomy outside and the studio looks less than inviting. All that progress I’m making doesn’t look like much in the picture….the list goes on.

I love Christmas, especially its colors.

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After whipping out some last-minutes gifts I had this irresistible pile on my table (yes, that’s a sock missing its mate…). Instead of putting it away I played a little, sewing bits and scraps together to make something new.  In my excitement I cut my made-fabric into 6-1/2″ squares, and probably should have thought that through. I want to make a Christmas snowball quilt and 6-1/2″ squares means I need a ton of them to make a quilt big enough to snuggle under. Rats.

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And this fun black and white swirl called to me from the top of the pile that is perfect for the background…. only I thought I had more and I don’t, which means I’ll have to come up with something else and rip this one out. Double rats.

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But I am determined! Something fun will come of this, I know it.