Sunday, December 22, 2013

Thank you 2013!!

When I was little, I made lists of things that I wanted for Christmas...
Now that I'm...lets not say older, lets say more organized, I still make lists...
Of things I am grateful for!
So here is my "Things I am Grateful for 2013" list!
I'm grateful for big things, like trips to Italy...
And little things, like a great selfie on the Ponte Vecchio in Italy...
 And big things like pictures of the entire family where everyone is at least looking at the camera!
And little things, like great spaghetti!!!
And big things like baby wipes, lots and lots of baby wipes!
And little things, like perfect accessories!
And big things like pre-school graduations!  (Behold!  The future!)
And little things like post its!
 And big things like long standing snuggly traditions...
 And little things, like Scotch tape!
And big things, like nap time!! (Moms will understand why I consider naps a big thing ;-)
And little things like great big smiles!
"If you're worried, and you can't sleep...
Just count your blessings instead of sheep!"
-Bing Crosby White Christmas

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A Shared Tradition!

So originally, and up until just a very short time ago, I thought that the jewelry tree my Grandma Stone made was completely unique.
And it is in a lot of ways, except as I mentioned in my earlier post, the actual project was very popular in the 50's.  I haven't been able to find very much about the actual origin of the project, but basic Google searches produce a wide array of similar images.  I even found several for sale at exorbitant prices on Ebay and Etsy!
And I learned today that at least one of my grandmother's 3 sisters also made one!
My mom's cousin, who is so awesome that she is lovingly referred to as 
"The Barb" by her daughters, was kind enough to share a picture of her mother's tree...
There are some differences between this tree made by Doris, Barb's mother, and my grandmother's tree...
But aren't they amazing?!!
And, I believe I already mentioned how awesome "The Barb" is, but I'm about to prove it...
She and her daughter, my second cousin (are we confused yet?), Julie of Julielynndesign, worked together to create this display which is both beautiful and functional!
Unlike the trees, the heirloom jewelry in this display can be removed and worn!
They used batting to pad the underside of the green velvet, and the pins are able to slide into the velvet when displayed, or they can be easily be removed and worn!
So pleased and proud to discover that I come from a long line of happy crafty women!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Traditions Part 2

Ok, tradition number 2...
The jewelry tree.
This tradition was also passed on to me by my grandma Stone, and it must have been a very popular project for women in the 50s because when I Googled the process to figure out how to get started, I came upon a wealth of similar creations!
For me, it just wasn't Christmas until we pulled out the jewelry tree.  
The combination of sparkle and shine was enough to keep me entranced for hours...ok, not hours, lets say long minutes at a time!
One jewelry tree, 3 sisters!
Put on my big girl crafting pants and make one for each of us!
When my grandmother passed, my grandpa gifted me with the majority of her collected costume jewelry
 and crafting supplies,
 so I had a supply of meaningful sparkles to use...
The hardest part was dividing it all up...
I used foam core board for the tree and left over wood paneling for the backing!  And I got that idea directly from the original!
I spray glued red felt to the wall board, and painted the tree green, Josh drilled the holes for me which led me to decide that my grandma must have been one bad#$! crafter because I know for a fact that my grandpa never touched a power tool in his life!
The rest of the process was mostly a matter of gluing and arranging...
I did mine first as a practice run, but it went well, so...
Dyanna's was next...
Followed closely by Rebecca's!
I tried to make each one special based on who it would belong to, but I did follow my original form pretty closely...
One piece that I did add to each tree was a penny from heaven (something my Grandpa Sacco used to say).  The pennies have each of our birthdays on them, and they just bring the tradition full circle for me.
I could not be prouder of the finished projects!
And now my kids spend long...minutes enjoying the sparkle and shine!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Traditions Part One!

This is the time of year when we all trot out our long standing family traditions and parade them around for everyone to see, right?
Ok, well, I have a couple to share, the first is the stocking...
And not just any stocking, my stocking, an elaborate affair of sequins and appliques made by my grandmother about 32 years ago...
And my Son's stocking, also an elaborate affair of sequins and appliques made by me roughly 5 years ago...
Which brings us to Gianna's stocking, and possibly the real reason I won't be having any more children!!
It too is an elaborate affair of sequins and appliques made by me over a 2 year period and finally completed yesterday!
Each of these fancy treats represents at least an hour of my life, I kid you not!
And believe it or not the instructions called for a like number of elaborate treats to be attached here at the top as well! ( If you look closely you can still see the faint outline of where things were to be placed!)
I vetoed the extra extravagance, however, and simplified the top portion which I think looks just as good this way!
So here we are, all ready and waiting for Santa...notice that Josh is missing?
Never fear, as soon as I recover from making Gianna's I fully intend to begin his.  He's a little less than enthusiastic about this design, and to be honest I originally chose this one for Gianna's before I found the sugar plum fairy design which I deemed more appropriate for my baby girl...
I'm thinking maybe I can edit in a little more manly pizazz for this stocking...perhaps an Indiana Jones style hat and a bull whip instead of a broom?  Stay tuned for the results...Next year!