It occurred to my this week that December is really not the time to be making holiday gifts. Every year, the list grows. Not in a stressful, obligatory way, but in a I'd really like to make all of these great things for the people I care about kind of way. Unfortunately, my desire to bring smiles and something useful to those around me does not exactly jive with the reality of time and a calendar that rolls on a little more each day. So, given my dislike for the hottest, muggiest time of the year, I'd like to be better at using July as my holiday gift making time.
Years ago I had a fun little business making herbal tea blends, natural body products, dried floral wreaths, and so forth. I was a busy young mom, selling my wares at craft shows and through "vendor programs" at corporations in my area. Those were such different times for the craft show circuit, many of us earned a living this way, something that is so difficult to do now, in my area at least. You got to know the other crafters quite well; after all, you pretty much travelled around together each weekend, attending whichever big show was on the docket.
There was a woman named Roberta that I became friendly with who made these beautiful hand-sewn primitive sampler type creations. She even made rustic Christmas ornaments out of tin that she cut by hand and painted with the prettiest, muted colors (she made the Santa pictured above). I have a snowman too. We spent many hot and sweaty summer weekends together trying to seek shade under our ez-up canopies, all the while attempting to look fresh and happy as we greeted customers who kindly supported our efforts. In the thick of one particularly soupy day, I may have been lamenting about the week I had in my third floor (HOT) attic studio... to which she commented that she just sits in front of a fan all day doing her handwork and eating frozen grapes. (Really! Frozen grapes!) Oh my, I was so envious.
I was never able to do my craft in such a breezy, fruity setting. The shear volume of dried floral goods that kept me in the attic (medicinal and culinary herbs were stored elsewhere), hot glue guns, and hauling each huge wreaths in their own individual boxes to the van, three flights down, prohibited that. But I am taking my cue from Roberta now, looking toward next summer. Come July, if you need me, if I'm not in the garden battling mosquitoes or noon day sun (it's either one or the other), I'll be sitting in front of a fan, checking special gifts off my handmade Christmas list, with a bowl of frozen grapes by my side. Who knows, I may even attempt some of those tin ornaments... they are very cute, after all.
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On Monday I'll be opening registration to my newest online workshop, Hibernate, which will take place in the new year. All of the details will be shared on that post, so please visit on Monday if you're interested. It likely will not be until later in the day, but Monday it is! xo