It’s Just Around The Corner!

The calendar says . . . it’s August.

Little Bear says . . . “It’s a beach day!

Crystal says . . . “Woo hoo! The new Hallmark Christmas Ornaments are in the stores”! 🙂

I know! I’m a big kid . . . but I couldn’t resist this Fisher Price Jet Plane.

My kids had the full-sized toy years ago and spent many happy times playing with it. When I spotted this Hallmark ornament version recently, the memories came flooding back, and I just couldn’t resist buying it for our Christmas tree. December 25th is around the corner ya know!

Of course, I’ve hardly ever met an ornament I didn’t “need”.

Please click here to read the whole sordid story!!!! 😉



12 Ornaments of Christmas – Pt. 1

Ok, I know. I KNOW!!! We may not be ready to think about the holidays just yet, but if you’d like to make gifts or decorations this year – time’s a wasting!

Today I’m launching a new series, “The Twelve Ornaments of Christmas”. Each week from now until Santa’s on the way, I plan to post a new ornament that I’ve made, along with the directions for you to make one too, if you like!


This week, I have a little sneaker, or “tennis shoe”, for the knitters among you!


It was not very complicated and fairly quick to make with small scraps of yarn. I used holiday red but this would be cute in any color as a party favor, perhaps? I can imagine it filled with candy or a tiny stuffed animal and then set at each guest’s place for a birthday party or an after-sports event. You can find the pattern here.

It’s going to look adorable on the tree this year! 🙂


Christmas Ornament Fever

My name is Crystal, and I’m an ornament-a-holic.

There, I’ve said it.


Although this may be news to most of you, it will come as no surprise to my family, and to the friends that happen to live nearby. I’m actually a little amazed that they haven’t gotten together and staged an intervention for me years ago. But then, maybe they’ve been enjoying the festive ambiance of my ornament fever??? 😉

christmastreestarThis “fever” began right after I got married. I had always loved Christmas but that year, as a new bride, I was decorating a tree in my very own home for the first time! It was so much fun to shop for colorful strings of lights and boxes of glass and satin ornaments (satin was so “in” then). And during that time, I remember reading an article in a women’s magazine that recommended buying one very special ornament every year so that eventually your tree would look amazing. I absolutely fell in love with that idea! From then on, each summer, we’d begin to look for that year’s “special ornament”.


After our daughters were born, we began collecting an ornament per year for each of them, too. Our thought was that they’d each have a fairly sizable collection by the time they were out of the nest with trees of their own! I should mention that when that time eventually came, Mama Bear was very surprised how hard it was to say goodbye to those ornaments! After all, they had been on our family tree for so long, they were old favorites! I remember when the girls wanted to take the ornaments to their college dorms and I said “Ohhh, well, yeah, ummmmm, but don’t you want to wait until you have your own apartment?” LOL They were sweet enough to humor me for a few more years . . . but I digress.


So all of this ornament collecting sent us in many directions. We bought some breathtaking glass ornaments. We received special ornaments as gifts occasionally. We’d always hit the after-Christmas sales for our favorite Hallmark ornaments. However, the ornaments I cherish most are the handmade ones. We found a few at craft fairs, but my daughters and I made most of them! (Click here and scroll down the page.) The girls began making simpler styles when they were quite young, but as they grew a little bit older, they were stitching tiny treasures that would melt your heart.


After a while, there was no way that all of the ornaments would fit on our tree, so we began to have a different theme each year. One year it would be all glass ornaments; the next it was just the Hallmarks; the year after that – all handmade. Then there were the times we would just do a blend of all the styles we had, but only our very favorites from each style.

christmastreestarYou’d probably think that by now, the novelty of buying new ornaments would have worn off, but I still love to find a new ornament for the girls when I can. I also buy a new one – or three – for their father and me. (I have to make up for all the ones the kids finally did take, ya know!) And I still enjoy making ornaments, so I usually try to add a couple of those each year, as well.

By the way, have you noticed that the Christmas ornaments are on display in the Hallmark stores now? If anyone is looking for me, check there first! 😉


Friday Favorites


For this week’s “Friday Favorites” may I present an ornament I’ve just finished making!

This “mini-sized” Christmas Stocking measures about 4 inches from top to toe, and it was so much fun to knit. I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out – especially because it’s been a long time since I’ve made anything with a charted design and I was a little worried about it.


Julie of “Little Cotton Rabbits” designed the pattern and you can find it by clicking here. Julie is an extraordinarily talented lady, who knits the most delightful little rabbits and a whole assortment of other wonderful things!

The tiny bear above just happened to be in my stash of craft supplies. I have a big box of odds and ends that I find on sale and put away for future projects. They really come in handy! This little fella was just the perfect size to snuggle in a mini stocking.

Now that you’ve seen him, I’ll put him on the tree 🙂

Once the holiday rush is over, I think I’ll start making a few friends for him . . . for next Christmas!