When he was small, my youngest son had a habit of filling his pockets with treasures he encountered in his daily adventures. I didn't always understand the value he saw in his chosen objects -- really, how many rocks and sticks could one boy keep? In his eyes, though, each one was beautiful and important. Life is just like that on a larger scale, isn't it? We gather up the precious bits of our experiences and save them all to learn from and enjoy later. Perhaps you'll find a little something here that you'd like to keep in your own pockets. Thanks for visiting.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Stockings, sweet and simple

Every Christmas, Matt, the boys and I look forward to the tradition of hanging our stockings along the fireplace mantel in our family room. For all of us, the stockings themselves hold as much meaning as the special little gifts that will be spilling from their tops on Christmas morning. They are a familiar, heartwarming sight that remind us of all the joyful moments we've shared together in Christmas seasons past.

I have always had a fondness for homemade Christmas stockings. My mom sewed ones for my brothers and I, my dad, and herself when we three kids were young, and I can still remember how happy I felt seeing those lovingly made socks hanging all together in a row over the holidays. I am definitely not gifted in the sewing department myself, however when Noah was very small I was able to take some plain red pre-made stockings from a craft store and turn them into something more special and personal with some simple craft supplies and techniques.

Our four stockings are cheerily embellished with Christmas-y shapes that I cut out freehand from craft store felt squares, plus mini pom-poms, glittery fabric paint, and a felt-tipped marker. If you aren't comfortable cutting out your own shapes, you can trace simple Christmas pictures from cards, puzzles or colouring books onto paper and use those as templates for cutting out your felt. Fasten all embellishments to the stocking with hot glue to make sure they will stay securely. For me, making stockings was a fun craft project that has been much appreciated by my favourite boys.

I hope that your stockings and your holidays are filled with whatever makes your heart happy. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!

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