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Posted: Sep. 8, 2002
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Question of the Week: 18 - 12/11/2000
Your Gift, Craft and Holiday Celebration Ideas!
Over the last few weeks, TWV has tried to offer a balanced assortment of gift, craft and Yule/Solstice planning/celebration ideas. Gifts can be homegrown and homemade and some other ideas may send you off to "shop 'til you drop". We would now like to hear about YOUR gift giving ideas. Are you making some gifts or craft items this year? Would you like to share your favorite 'bargain spots on the web" secrets with us? Do you have any good projects for Pagan children or ideas for coven/group/family special 'traditions' that can help to make the Holidays especially meaningful or spiritual? C'mon! Give!
| Reponses: There are 43 responses posted to this question.
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| I Have Two Gift Ideas To Share. My Boyfriend's Mother, Who Has... ||Dec 11th. at 10:02:43 pm EST|
|Cessair (Carlsbad, California US) ||Age: 32 |
I have two gift ideas to share. My boyfriend's Mother, who has everything she could ever seem to need, can be difficult to shop for. The one thing she doesn't have (at 85 with no driver's license) is mobility and company. My gift to her this year is to take her out twice to places I know she likes to eat and also to the mall for a long as she wishes to stay. I am printing up a certificate to that effect and wrapping it up in nice box with a token gift (a ceramic snow man).
The other "gift" idea is to bake a loaf of Stollen bread. This is a traditional yuletide bread to make but I am making it with a twist. I am shaping mine like a swaddled child. This is to represent the promise of the new year and the fruitfulness wished for the receiver for the new year. To those who are Christian it can represent the Christ child. To Pagans, the child God. To me (a Taoist) it's yummy bread with candied fruit in it. :-)
| For All My Witchie Friends I Am Making A Set Of Winnie... ||Dec 11th. at 10:49:29 pm EST|
|Michele Bigwood (Arvada, Colorado US) ||Age: 29 - Email |
For all my witchie friends I am making a set of Winnie the Pooh tarot cards. My neighbors get a homemade desert each year. I have also dried some dough ornaments after shaping them like rain drops and painting them. I have started a study group to begin in January which is my gift to myself... the gift of getting together with adult friends which is difficult with two small children.
| Living In A Rabidly Christian Area I'm Always A Bit Perplexed At... ||Dec 12th. at 9:07:30 am EST|
|Maia BlackWolf (Milnesville, Pennsylvania US) ||Age: 32 - Email |
Living in a rabidly Christian area I'm always a bit perplexed at this time of year. (I also have the same problem at Ostara.) Being the only Pagan (and "in the broom closet" at that) in a Catholic family compounds my confusion. Celebrating with the family while knowing that so many of the traditions have been "borrowed" from ancient Paganism can be frustrating when there is so much talk of "the birth of the Saviour".
At the moment my street is so brightly lit by my neighbours' Christmas decorations that we hardly need the street lamps. The mass commercialization of this season has always distressed me.
And so I do not set foot in any retail stores from "Black Friday" until New Years Day. I do what little shopping I do by mail order and online. Being a craftsperson by profession I have always made many of my Solstice gifts. While I believe that the true spirit of giving lies in the time and effort spent on the gift, I do have relatives who do not feel that its a "real" gift unless you buy it in a store and spend lots of money. Well, they've just had to get used to my gifts of homemade chocolate truffles, homemade biscotti in five different flavours, ceramic ornaments, sun-dried tomatoes (grown in my own garden) packed in olive oil and basil, potpourri made from herbs grown in my gardens, and hand painted flower pots packed with packets of seeds for the coming gardening season.
| For Yule I Ask The People For A List Of Things That... ||Dec 12th. at 12:11:42 pm EST|
|Jayson Tegeder (Garic) (Omaha, Nebraska US) ||Age: 26 - Email |
For Yule I ask the people for a list of things that they want or need. Then I find something that I can afford and buy it for them. I also find things that I know my friends can use but don't have the money or time to make or buy them. This past year I have started making things for my Rennaissance costume instead of buying them at the faires. Well one of my friends needs a pouch for his costume because the one he has really doesn't match the costume or his personality. So I figured I would make that for him. This will be the first time in a really long time that I have made anything for a friend. Those are the best ways I know to make my friends and family happy this time of the year.
| Hello, A Great Place To Find Pagan Iteams Is Ebay.com. They Offer... ||Dec 12th. at 1:14:34 pm EST|
|melysah (fayetteville, Georgia US) ||Age: 18 - Email |
Hello, A great place to find pagan iteams is ebay.com. They offer wonderful deals on books, tools, jewelery, herbs, candles and many other things. I have purchased many books from ebay and I am quite pleased. The only aspects you may have to watch out for is shipping charges and dont forget to check for negative feedback from the person your purchasing the iteam. Goodluck and happy shopping!
| This Year Is The First Year I Will Get To Actively Celebrate... ||Dec 12th. at 1:59:22 pm EST|
|Greg (Mesa, Arizona US) ||Age: 23 - Email |
This year is the first year I will get to actively celebrate Yule, and I'm really excited about it. For friends, I decided to make spell kits. I'm providing materials (candles, stones, herbs, matches, etc.), instructions (get creative with the paper!), and a pretty bag to put all this stuff in. Then the person can do something good and nurturing for themselves, and I will have given them something that I worked on and really thought about. I've found that writing spells for my friends has been truly delightful, and I'm looking forward to giving these presents to them. Plus, this is really inexpensive and heartfelt! Much love, light, and laughter to you during Yule! Blessed Be!
| This Year I Am Giving Out A Couple Of "bath Kits" For... ||Dec 12th. at 2:25:19 pm EST|
|Colleen (Santa Cruz, California US) ||Age: 22 |
This year I am giving out a couple of "bath kits" for the women in my life. They consist of:
2 herbs (labeled, in plastic bags)
1 muslin tea bag
1 homemade bar of soap (in my case, bought), or 1 wish-charged candle
(I would put both in, but there isn't enough room)
1 semiprecious stone
I have a few abalone shells left over from my boyfriend's abalone-hunting escapades, so I will put the above items in the shell and wrap it in with plastic wrap, ends attached on the bottom with a sticker, to give to them. The herbs should be put in the muslin tea bag and put into a hot bath to steep for a while before one steps into the bath.
Before a friend told me I should use the abalone shells, I was thinking of using baskets, so if you don't have shells, you could easily do it with some other container. This is the first time I've really made gifts instead of buying them, and I hope to do more of it in the future!
Happy Yuletide to you and yours!
| Children In Our Home Made Cookies...simple Enough When They Com In... ||Dec 12th. at 2:28:52 pm EST|
|Amber Buck (Houston, Texas US) ||Age: 27 - Email |
Children in our home made cookies...simple enough when they com in tubes and allyou have to do is cut ad cook. The fun part comes in decorating them! Simple and decorative icing can be made with some powdered sugar and food coloring..just mix in the coloring and a tad of water till its the consistency you want and then spoon on the drippy stuff over your cooled off sugar cookies. We did a light glaze for the back ground colors on the cookies in greens and reds and yellows then added more powdered sugar to the glaze to thicken it up and did designs in opposite colors ontop of the galzed cookies that had dried. It was a ton of fun for the kids, they get so creative! We did penatcles and rising suns and hollys with red berries. It was an excellent time to share the meanings behind Yule decorations and cheap to boot...a bag of powdered sugar and a package of food coloring comes to about 5 bucks total and they go a LONG way.!
Yuletide gifts: Mostly we bought at malls, however I did find some great jewelry deals on EBAY.
Homemdae Yule Gifts: I did do a secret santa thing at work where I only did crafts gifts...made a wreath with all kinds of different santa on it. Filled a jar full of nuts and hot-glued 3 small dollar store santa figures to the top and wrapped with a festive bow. Total gift price was well under 20 bucks, and they look really great :)
Both of my children got crafts this year and hand made all of their gifts for family. We have picture frames and necklaces galore. :) My daughter also bought one of those paint the plastic pictures candle holders and had a blast with it , resulting in a special gift for her teacher.
Traditions: After reading and thinking about how easy it is to make Yule logs we will be adding that tradition to our existingones this year! My oldest girl ( 9 ) loves to play with the power drill. She'd love to do the candle hole drilling and my son ( 7 )gets all excited about using the hot glue gun, so he can attach the decor around the log :)
| Another Great Way To Give To Friends And To Give To The... ||Dec 12th. at 3:23:29 pm EST|
|Hunter (Peterborough, Ontario CA) ||Age: 23 - Email |
Another great way to give to friends and to give to the planet is to adopt endangered species in their name this Hoilday season. For my friends that are hard to shop for I adopted a polar bear in their name through the World Wild Life Fund. For a small amount $25 my friends get a beautiful picture of a polar bear in their natural habitat a critficate of adoption and the rather unique thrill to say that their adoptive parents of a rather large nordic animal. The money goes toward wild life preservation in the nordic regions and is a great way for me to give a gift that I feel really matters for more information check out the World Wildlife Fund web site www.worldwildlife.org The best thing about this organization is that they try to presearve habitat for animals in urban settings as well so they look out for species that are native to your own region. You might also want to check into your nearest metro zoo or even the local animal shelter for ways that you can help there too. Zoo's often run adoptive programs and although you might not want to adopt a pet for the holidays from the local animal shelter donations are always welcomed and appreciated. Giving this way takes the commercialization out of the festive season and gives you a real warm fuzzy feeling.
| This Will Be My First Yule. I Will Be Celebrating With My... ||Dec 12th. at 3:24:54 pm EST|
|Crystallyne (Niles, Michigan US) ||Age: 21 - Email |
This will be my first Yule. I will be celebrating with my best friend, his first Yule as well. Being there for each other is probably one of the largest gifts we will share. Any others will have very little, to no, material value. I have always been one to indulge in gifts from the heart. Some of the best things I could recieve would be a poem or a piece of homemade jewelry. In my opinion it is truly the thought that counts.
| I Taught Myself The Ancient Art Of Baking During The Course Of... ||Dec 12th. at 4:29:50 pm EST|
|Anita Ashcraft Drake (Boise, Idaho US) ||Age: 29 - Email |
I taught myself the ancient art of baking during the course of this year, as a response to being diagnosed with cancer. This life is too precious to waste on food not prepared with loving hands and a loving heart. So this Yule I'm baking challah (braided bread) for my friends, coworkers, and family. I've baked birdseed wreaths for our feathered visitors (hung in the trees with hemp twine), and am also making sock monkey dolls for our young friends. Every child needs a sock monkey! I find that active hands help to heal my scarred body and spirit, and the time spent with my family as I sew and bake reflects the season's gifts of light and love.
| So Many Wonderful Ideas! Here's My Humble Contribution. I Plan To Write... ||Dec 12th. at 9:31:54 pm EST|
|WindSong (Los Alamos, New Mexico US) ||Age: 17 - Email |
So many wonderful ideas! Here's my humble contribution. I plan to write poetry about what I associate with my close friends. Then I will put it in calligraphy, hopefully, with nice designs around it.
Have a wonderful holiday season and enjoy Yule!
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