I love getting gifts - who doesn't! But I especially love getting gifts that were created by the gift-giver. They touch me in a way that I can't totally describe. Maybe it's because I know how precious my "creating" time is to me.
Don't get me wrong - I know everyone's time is precious whether they're shopping catalogs or stores, or crafting something from their own hands. And I'm not unappreciative of any gift.
I love giving hand-made gifts also. I know that there are people that I will not hesitate to give a hand-made gift to and there are people that I would not for various reasons. It becomes a choice of determining who would be appreciative of something created and who would not give it a second thought.
A personal goal of mine has been to give a little something I've created to the staff that I work with over the years at Christmastime. Some of these things I know have been tossed aside and certainly were not meant to be treasured for a lifetime.
It made me feel good recently when a teacher told me that she was going to add the bookmark that I made to a package for her mother-in-law because she thought it was so pretty and her MIL loves things like that. When she asked me if I minded I told her that I did not and rather that she pass it on than dispose of it like some of them had already. I've had a number of people tell me that they have saved my paper creations and have sometimes regifted them. I think that's a lovely compliment.
I have been honored to received a few of the hand-made creations featured throughout this post and will treasure them for years to come. They come from dear blogging buddies who share my love of stamping and papercrafts.
The Peace Medallion and candy cane tag came from my friend Michelle in Colorado. Michelle gives me inspiration almost daily with her wonderfully insightful posts on her blog Figments of My Imagination. I had the good fortune to be able to meet Michelle in person this past spring. That was among one of the highlights of 2012 for me. Some of my non-blogging friends thought that it was quite risky to meet up with someone you only knew from "the internet". I think we were both a little nervous about it, but it was a very rewarding experience that I'll treasure.
The picture that I took of the card I got from my friend Sabrina in Ireland does not do it justice. If you could see the wonderful detail in all the embossing on the edges you would know how she puts so much of her creative soul into her cards. The bird ornament on the card and the ornaments now on my tree were hand stamped and colored by Sabrina and the ornaments are two-sided so you can see the beautiful work no matter which way the breeze turns it. Sabrina's blog is called My Miscellany and she features gorgeous photographs that she takes as well as recipes and her other talents like knitting and of course, cardmaking. I feel like I have visited many of the places that she has taken pictures of just by looking at them. We share a love of birds Sabrina and I - can you tell!
I have a special box for hand-made and delicate ornaments and these and Michelle's will certainly be kept there and displayed at the holidays for years to come.
I just love the little tag that Sabrina also made that came along in her package to me. Can't you just see the joy of that little mouse splashing in the puddle! And the little post-it notebook she made will not be forgotten but used gently so I can enjoy the creation on the cover for a long time.
Thank you both, Michelle and Sabrina, for sharing your talents with me. You have made me feel very special!