Happy (belated) New Year

Did you do anything special to ring in the new year?

Mr. Aitch and I had a relaxing evening at home. We toasted in the new year then went to bed shortly after midnight.  We are such party animals.  NOT!

I did finally get a Holiday project finished right in time for the new year… 3-d Moravian stars.

I bought this kit that makes two 20-point stars several years ago and thought it would be a fun thing to do with the grands.  And then decided I would make them myself.

Good thing, too as the limited instructions were very difficult for me to understand without going online for help.

But I soldiered on and finished both stars.

I hung them in the dormer windows in the two front bedrooms Monday evening.

We live on a hill and it’s hard to get a picture of our house from the street but here is a shot of the front.  You might be able to make out the stars in the half-round windows.

I just might leave them there all year.


Our daughter and family from Colorado spent last weekend with us so we had our Thanksgiving dinner on Sunday.

The grandkids helped decorate the table with these cute cut-outs from Growing Play.

We are so blessed with the abundance of food, family and love.

Missing from the table are the green bean casserole, stuffing, pumpkin and pecan pies.

I hope your Thanksgiving Day is full of blessings and love.

Christmas Wishes 2016

Before we get to the meat of this post, I want to thank all our veterans for serving and defending the freedoms we enjoy each and every day.  Thank you so much.

Well, I’m really going against MY rules about posting something about Christmas before Thanksgiving in the US but I’m posting this now those of you who wanted/needed a reminder early enough so you can do this, too, if you want.

Christmas Wishes or an Advent calendar of sorts.  A small gift, Words of encouragement, activity suggestion, simple craft, or treat is opened each day before Christmas. For more details, read this.

In the beginning I used brown paper lunch-sized bags.  Then one year I wrapped each “gift” and quickly learned that I wasn’t doing that again!  Finally I made those sour cream packets since I was using small items and the lunch bags were just too large.

I used card stock this year and glue sticks.  The double-sided tape works better but is more expensive.  Plus I didn’t have much tape.


I printed out the numbers and cut them out with a large hole punch.  Paper sizes were 4×5, 4×6, and 6×6.  A paper cutter works great but so does a rotary cutter.

The mini ornaments and no candy.


The card stock was sturdier than what I used in the past so I held the ends together with spring clips until the glue dried.  I won’t lie, this took longer than using the double-sided tape but I needed to take breaks anyway.


If the end wouldn’t stay shut, I had to use the tape.


The completed packets can be hung from a ribbon, tree branch, dowel, or curtain rod.





Day 24 included some surprises for the entire family so it was wrapped in a larger box.


Ready to send!


Do you do anything for Advent or a countdown for Christmas?

Professional gift wrapper

When I worked in retail many years ago, one of my duties was to wrap boxes in the store’s approved gift wrap to be displayed on a large board.  Customers would then select the package they liked and the professional gift wrapper would wrap their purchase.

wrap 3During the Christmas season, the store hired a part-time person or two to work just in the gift wrap area in the evenings and weekends.  And I would help out during the day hours.  Sometimes I would also come in on the weekends to work as well.

My daughter was hired two years in a row for the job.  She and I watched the video on the correct way to wrap a gift.  It was quite interesting.  We watched how many pieces of tissue were used to line a shirt box.  How to wrap regular sized boxes.  How to wrap odd sized boxes.  How to fold in the corners nice and straight.  How to make a perfect bow.  No stick-on bows for sure!

wrap 5

The gift wrap service was not free so it had to be worth it.

Yes, we were professional gift wrappers.

The gift wrap area had all the papers on a rack so all you had to do was unroll the paper and pull on the cutting edge to get it separated from the rest of the roll.  There was a shelf under the wrapping surface with the store logo-imprinted tissue paper.  Ribbons were also on a hanging bar with a pair of scissors near by.  A tape dispenser, gift tags, and gift embellishments were also close by.

Shirt boxes, lingerie boxes, large boxes for towels and coats, sweater boxes and tie boxes were stacked on the floor for easy reach.

It was almost perfect.

The only issue was that the wrapping table was too low and my back hurt after wrapping gifts for several hours.

When gift bags became all the rage, people stopped wrapping gifts.  That area in the store where I used to work no longer exists and I’m sure it doesn’t exist in a lot of stores any more.

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But it’s much more fun for a child to rip open a wrapped gift than it is to reach in a gift bag and pull out the gift.

A Christmas Story

A Christmas Story

I love to wrap gifts.  It’s an art.

So do you wrap or bag?