Making Christmas Special & Unique

Next week is the  beginning of October, and many of us are looking ahead to colder weather and all the holidays to come. Well, just it’s just cooler weather here in Florida, but I like that.  The next few months are filled with special times: Halloween with treats and decorations, Thanksgiving to remember to be grateful, and Christmas a time to share our joy.   The last 6 months have been far from normal, and I must admit, I’m not as enthused about the holidays as normal.  So today I am doing positive affirmations and remembering the reason for the season.  Even  after recent events of the pandemic and the worries about tomorrow, we need to  start thinking ahead and planning what we can do to make this Christmas a special one even if it’s different. With that in mind, here are some of the things to consider.

Homemade wrapping paper

You might be sitting with a closet filled with wrapping paper,  but before you use it or buy more,  consider adding a touch of craft to your Christmas festivities by creating your own wrapping paper.  Printing photographs onto large pieces of paper is a great way to ensure that your wrapping paper is personal. You could ensure the paper includes pictures of the person the gift is for, or just add a selection of your favorites so that the person receiving the gift knows it was from you. Do it in a theme of black and white or add a touch of color, just get a little creative. People will appreciate the effort, even though it won’t take you much time at all.  A lovely therapeutic craft idea is to use the inspiration you have around you.

Perhaps a few sprigs of evergreen are in abundance in your garden or close to your home. Grab some  and use them to add to your paper and ribbon. For stamping, cut a design into a peeled potato and use it to dip in paint or ink and stamp white paper or even brown paper bags.  Remember that from elementary school?   Moms, how about baby’s foot print as a design choice? Foot painting!  

Photo via Skip to my Lou

HuffPost has a great article, 15 Awesome Alternatives To Gift Wrapping Paper That You Already Have In Your Home  with all kinds of ideas from sweater bags, grocery bags,  and vintage scarfs to cereal boxes, newspaper, and plastic containers.  I’ve used newspaper and brown paper bags for years.  Very eco friendly too.

Personalized gifts

Another favorite activity for many crafters is to make personalized gifts. Hampers and baskets are a great way to show people you have taken into account the things that they love. You could use christmas decor baskets to fill with items chosen for the recipient, and it could be such a treat. The basket itself  is a gift that can then be reused.

You could also make gifts like candy, baked goods, ornaments, or even artwork if you have that talent. There are so many ways you can make the most of your hobbies, and it could be the ideal gift this year.  How about a favorite framed photo?

How about a spa pedicure in a mason jar?

Photo via A Night Owl

Check out Good Housekeeping’s 75 DIY Christmas Gifts.  So many great ideas that almost everyone could find something they can do. 

Winter Wonderland Shakers via Good Housekeeping
Salt Dough Ornaments via Good Housekeeping

For cooks, Good Housekeeping has another post, 45 Best Homemade Food Gifts that makes my mouth water. So many cute goodies to make and give.

Slice & Bake Chocolate Pistachio Cookies via Good Housekeeping

Personally I like to make a pan of candied nuts, put them in jars, and decorate for gifts.  If you are a canner, nothing beats home canned veggies.  Homemade Refrigerator Pickled Carrots,  Pickled Red Onions. or Jalapeno Jelly Gifts anyone?

A decorated dining table

Sometimes the easiest way to add a cozy homemade holiday touch to your home  is decorating your dining room table. Traditionally, many people come together around the table to eat a  festive feast. Even if you are not having the whole family get-together (except for Skype), there isn’t a better way to celebrate than having a fun table. Candles have such a way of adding atmosphere to any occasion. You can go with traditional colors of red and green, or choose colors that go with your home.  White and gold with a touch of red is perfect for most homes.

There are some amazing tablescapes online that will fill your mind with endless possibilities. But simply adding a few candles to the mix will brighten up your dining space and make it feel like an occasion. You could also decorate the dining table and room with flowers or green foliage to be a little more festive. Perhaps offcuts from a Christmas tree or sprinkles of holly dotted around here and there. Below is a farmhouse table from The White Buffalo filled with woodsy charm.

Photo via White Buffalo

Finding Home uses cranberries and green cuttings from her yard to fill clear glass vases that line the holiday table.

 Photo via Finding Home

Are you into Santa?

Photo via DIY Candy

How about snowmen?  I love a jolly snowman!

To add natural fragrance to your home, use potpourri, natural candles, essential oils in diffusers or simmer pots of natural herbs and fruits.     How to Make a Stovepot Holiday Potpourri  can help you make your home cozy and smell like Christmas and winter.

I’m hoping I inspired you to make Christmas special and unique this year despite the world problems. Even a dinner for 2 is more fun with some holiday decorations added.  Now think of ways to share with others this year as it is needed more than ever.   God Bless!

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I was raised in Tennessee but have lived in Florida for many years. Love my small home in the Tampa Bay area and its developing garden. My decorating style is eclectic - some vintage, some cottage, all with a modern flair. Pursuing a healthier lifestyle. Spent many years in social services but am happily retired.

9 thoughts to “Making Christmas Special & Unique”

    1. I’m so happy you like it – I have been wrestling with the holidays for a while now. I just thought other people might need to talk about it.

    1. Gayle I feel the same way. Somehow part of me thinks it should still be spring while another knows Thanksgiving and Christmas aren’t far away. Time has become blurry in a sea of sameness. Wishing you a beautiful Thursday!

  1. So many lovely ideas and a promise of things to come. We’ve celebrated our New Year earlier this week with the whole country in lockdown and not able to gather as a family, as we usually do.This year has a lot to answer for.

  2. You have assembled such a collection of darling ideas. (I’m wild about those salt shakers.) Some of those ideas are ones I’ve done for ages but there are lots of new ones. We’re trying to figure out how to do Christmas with the kids or if we can. It’s really too early to know and will probably depend on everyone agreeing to quarantine before. And I’m not sure that’s possible. So, this will be the year of gifts I make (or get online) and using what I have. Which might not be a bad thing…! Thanks for giving me even more ideas.

    1. I think most of us need some ideas for ways to make it a more enjoyable holiday with the restrictions – glad you enjoyed the post!

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