‘TIS THE SEASON TO MAKE A HOT MESS

Someone make it stop. It’s that holly jolly time of year when I inexplicably forget all evidence to the contrary and decide that I’m “crafty.” Not “plot a coup” crafty. “Grab a glue gun and get busy” crafty.

The problem with that is – well, there are multiple problems with this. There’s a difference… a WORLD of difference between creative and crafty. If I were truly a craft-type person, I would own a glue gun. I don’t. In fact, I’m kind of afraid of the damage I might do with hot glue. So far, I have managed to refrain from purchasing one, although I do eye them warily in the store and have reached for one every now and again before regaining control. It’s as if I realize we COULD have a relationship, but it would be an unhealthy one.

How do people do this? Everyone I know is busy making homemade biscotti or sewing quilts, or knitting or making photo books or basket weaving or making a homemade nativity scene out of paper mache and spit. It’s annoying. It’s enough to give a girl a complex. Especially this girl.

The urge to craft must be genetic. Years ago, my mother, who had the good sense to work with florist wire instead of glue, made Christmas wreaths. I still have the one she gave me almost 20 years ago. I’ve refurbished it a bit, re-attaching parts with wire and replacing items as they become too weathered or broken, but I still think of it as hers.

 

Then there’s my fraternal grandmother. She was an amazing seamstress. Gertie made rag dolls, clothes, decorations and quilts that were truly works of art. Many went to the church bazaar each year, but I have a collection of her Christmas ornaments I use every year on my tree. Sometimes I get the urge to leave them in the closet and decorate with beautiful glass or fabric and gemstone / glittery ornaments – color coordinated in jewel tones or shades of blue and purple… but I scrap the idea when I think of a “decorator” tree versus the “handmade” tree.

Here’s a selection of some of my favorites.

    

Seriously. Look at the detail on these. The eyelashes are little tiny stitches.

I adore this little rosy-cheeked Eskimo. The fringe, the little toothpick (spear) in his hand. (Don’t think about the baby seals.)

Then there’s the Snowman and his mittens and scarf. His eyelashes are stitched as well.

So perhaps you can see where I might get the impression I’m supposed to CREATE something for Christmas. Something the boys can share with their kids someday. Something that generations to come will pull out of a dusty box and say, “Oh! I remember this! Crazy old Ann made this!”

Therefore, against my better judgement I am pondering a trip to Michael’s, where I will wander about staring blankly at decorative ribbon, styrofoam, felt, glitter, fake evergreens and holly. In the end, I will spend $45+ dollars to come home and make a mess. I know this because it’s an annual event, and as you may have noticed, you are not viewing any pictures of anything I made. That would be because nothing exists. I might as well go to Michael’s and pay the guy at the floral desk $45 dollars to mock me. The end result would be the same but my fingers wouldn’t be glued together.   

Wish me luck on my creative adventure. If nothing else, maybe someday, when one of the boys is playing with his son or daughter on the rug they “inherited” from us, they will find a tiny sequin superglued to a bit of fringe and say, “Hey! I remember this! This is from that year Ann tried to make homemade ornaments! Man, could she cuss!”

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