I don't know about you, but I pretty much feel like sleeping through the entire week before Christmas.
I think us Crafty and We Know It crowd feel this extra pressure to be creative and clever when it comes time to give gifts. I suppose I could (and have in the past) make Christmas a time to showcase my craft and share it with my loved ones but, in reality, I've never bought into the more is better philosophy and I would rather curl up with an excellent (or even mediocre) book and hot tea than pound away at the sewing machine, growing increasingly psychotic with lack of sleep. Been there, done that, never had time to finish the tee shirt to show for it. I feel the pressure to be extra productive at the holidays, but I'm finding it easier to ignore that nagging feeling for my own mental health and to not have my life railroaded by ridiculously inflated expectations.
This is what I want from myself and others this Christmas: To be. To be with one another. I don't really want (and I certainly don't need) the candies, chocolates, tinsel, wrapping, tv specials, special anything. I want (and need) to be warm and relaxed with my family. And I'd like to read some books, which is what I give as presents (second hand books, of course) so we can all just shut up and read awhile. Quietly, together. With some hot tea. Because it's cold out there.
Now, before you all turn away in disgust, having come to the crafty blog to hear about how I don't want to do any crafts, I have actually been working. Slowly. Since I've discovered how much I enjoy doll making, the time I spend hand sewing has increased, at first out of necessity - a sewing machine only takes you so far with a doll - but I find I'm enjoying it almost as a meditative experience.
I used to make clothes like it was a race, but with dolls I like to work slowly (which is good, because I hand sew at a snail's pace), taking time to get to know the small character I am shaping. Doll making feels quieter, more contemplative. I know that each artist brings themselves into any craft, which is why each thing we make is unique, but I can also see now how the craft affects the artist.
It could also be that every doll I make forces me to learn new skills and techniques. I have to feel my way slowly through it, otherwise the lessons will be lost and I will have to start again.
My craft motto is never turn back. Of course, for a woman who uses the stitch ripper as much as I do, this isn't exactly the most accurate description of my time, but I suppose that's why it's a motto and not a diary.
Now enough rambling from me. I'm sure you have plenty of things to do right now and don't need me going on and on right now. I will leave you, though, with one last picture, one to warm the heart of every parent of a four year old.
(Just in case you didn't know, you can find Indietutes on Facebook as well. It's where I've been posting work in progress photos and my random thoughts on books the childs and I am reading.)