Thursday, November 20, 2008

Holiday Traditions

If you've noticed the flashing button on my sidebar you probably know by now that today kicks off a months worth of posts about the Holidays.

I'm participating in a Holiday Expo sponsored by Internet Cafe Devotions. Every Thursday I will be sharing another aspect of the holidays here in the Grove home. If you want to check out the tips, stories and recipes from the other contributors just click here and follow the links.

Now, to get started....

Before I begin I must tell you all that I am doing this post in secrecy. My husband considers Thanksgiving to be the best holiday of the year and feels that it gets majorly overlooked because of it's position between Halloween and Christmas. He does not allow us to acknowledge the Christmas season in our home (no decor, music, etc) until after Thanksgiving. So....I have to do this post on the sly and hope he doesn't find out about it until it is too late. Sorry, sweetie.

Now, to really get started....

One of my favorite traditions happens way before December 25th. Every year on the first or second weekend of November I gather with 20 or 30 other friends from church and we make our own homemade Christmas cards. And I'm not talking about 10 or 15 cards here. Some years I've made 80 or 90 cards! And here is the best part....its all FREE. Yes, completely, totally, 100% FREE!

A wonderful lady in our church offers these card making days as a ministry. She provides all of the stamps, ink, paper, envelopes and tools you could ever need...and she doesn't just do it at Christmas. We meet for one weekend every other month to make cards to our heart's content. I make all of my own birthday, get well soon, sympathy, Valentine's Day, Easter, Halloween and Thanksgiving cards too. (I'll obviously use any excuse to send a card.) But the Christmas weekend is special.

We have wassail and lots of treats to eat. There are door prizes every hour and we stamp cards for 6 hours on Friday night and 8 hours on Saturday. We try new ideas and copy out of magazines and off of each other. We laugh and joke and work our fingers to the bone. I usually make several different styles because I get bored making 60 of the same card.

Here are three of the nine styles of cards I did this year:



At the end of the weekend my back is killing me but I've got all of my FREE handmade Christmas cards, complete with decorated envelopes, ready to go. It is really an awesome tradition and my friends and family enjoy getting my special cards every year and I have a blast making them. What could be better?

Come back next Thursday to share in our day of Gratitude.

12 comments:

Denise said...

Awesome cards sweetie, thanks for sharing.

Deena said...

Well, I feel SO much better now. I've always been a bit... intimidated by your cards. :) If I got FREE stuff and had a group to get together with, I'd make MY own cards too. :) I DO make my own, but not like YOU do. I just play with photos and stuff. I was particularly pleased with last year's card though.

LauraLee Shaw said...

Wowzer, those are BEAUTIFUL!

Amy Bayliss said...

Okay I'm totally jealous and want to do this! I long for an excuse to make cards. Maybe I should initiate this with my friends. I'd love pointers on how I could do that. This really is a fabulous idea and you have got some mad card makin' skillz, girl!

Amy Bayliss said...

btw... what kind of stamps are those?

lori said...

OH MY WORD....I've found a kindred spirit!! THOSE CARDS...I'm a paper addict and I'm a paper carder and those are ADORABLE!!! I love it! Seriously...you make 90 of those babies...YOU ARE A WOMAN!! I'm soooo jealous! What a great idea....I've got all the supplies...come on over!:)

loved it!

peace,
lori

Esthermay said...

Absolutely gorgeous cards. I envy the no-cost factor. After I purchase all the stuff I need to make the *perfect* CHRISTmas card, I am reminded nearly daily by DH that we could have bought boxed (*gasp*) cards from the Women's Missionary Society for a fraction of the $$$$. WHERE is the Man's spirit!!!

Patricia said...

I love this! I've wanted to make my own cards for years. Maybe I'll start simple and maybe I can get enough handmade cards done for the family before Christmas Day.

(*snickering, nearly hysterical* -- I still have the calendar cards I bought...ummmm....2 years ago and never mailed -- maybe my good intentions will turn into deeds this year if I stick to a firm schedule...one can only hope!)

Traci said...

Great cards!! Can we expect that to be your gift...for the carnival gift exchange??? Count me in!! :)

a woman found said...

That's awesome!!!! And i love the cards! If I had a sweet lady providing my materials and guiding me through I'd be hooked!

HisFireFly said...

Your cards are simpoly beautiful! Thanks so much for sharing them with us.

Claudia said...

The cards are absolutely gorgeous - and what a wonderful ministry and time of fellowship. Something to think about for next year.