When we began our homeschooling journey, my mentor, Barbara Dewey of Waldorf Without Walls, would always say to me, “don’t plan a main lesson block for December.” And all I could think was “how will I ever get in all of grade __ (fill in the blank) then?” I had such a hard time “allowing” myself the space for a pause from the routine. Barbara’s recommendation: make gifts.
It took me a few years of overdoing it in December before I could even try her recommendation; but when I did, I realized “Oh, gift and card making, baking goodies to give away….really the giving is the lesson!”
Over the years, we have made pot holders, soaps, paper boxes, candles, pin cushions, window stars, truffles, clay bowls, scarves, candied nuts, stamped wrapping paper, dish cloths and more to give away. All manner of handwork projects can make great gifts, too.
Whether you give gifts on Christmas, Winter Solstice, or on New Year’s Day like some friends of ours, or you simply want to send out handmade cards this year, check out some of my favorite books on making handmade gifts.
And whatever holidays you celebrate this time of year, I encourage you to consider taking a break from main lesson work and make gift-making and giving the lesson. In between the crafting, curl up on the couch and share wonderful stories and books about winter and the holiday season. You can return to your lesson rhythm in January after a nice break.
Here are some ideas for 4 Last Minute Homemade Gifts.
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My Favorite Books for Making Handmade Gifts
Making Things: The Handbook of Creative Discovery by Ann Sayre Wiseman
Things I Can Make by Sabine Lohf
Gifts from the Heart by Cynthia Whitney Ward
Gifts from the Kitchen by Annie Rigg
Papercraft by Angelika Wolk-Gerche
The Quiltmakers Gift by Jeff Brumbreau & Gail Marcken
Do you have some favorite gift-making books? Please share!