Weekend reads

Well, another week has passed!

This time of year sure does fly, a reminder that we need to slowdown and be mindful more then ever I think.  Can you believe Christmas is almost upon us?

There has been loads of sewing here this week.  Which has been absolutely lovely!  The floor has been littered with bits fabric, stuffing and thread most of this week.  The boys got enthusiastically stuck into making their own Christmas decorations out of felt and buttons from my sewing stash, which kept them well amused one hot afternoon.

These are perhaps some of my very favorite Christmas decorations.  Aren't they just so beautiful?  

When Angus turned 4, I made him a super cool dragon, by the name of Toothless from the kids movie How To Train Your Dragon.  He was gorgeous and very complex, his head alone had 11 pieces to it.  It was most defiantly a project made with cuss words and plenty of love. Whilst the sewing to him has held up beautifully, the wool blend fabric I used has not, he is bally, the fabric has worn and his little weighted beads pop out all over the place, from the fabric not the seams.  DANG IT!  Angus has been wishing I would make him another for little while now, so I decided this Christmas I would! 

He still needs a little hand sewing, and his eyes but this time I made him from beautiful black minky, and he feels WONDERFUL!  It is the fabric I should have used in the first place.  Then of course I had to level up him, and make Hiccup, his rider.  Which is who the little 7" Waldorf doll will be.  

Then Henry caught sight of a beautiful hand sewn Stormfly, my clever friend had made.  So naturally, she is next.  Though her pattern has considerably less pieces to it, and I will not be adding all the spikes to her tail, nor her teeth.  I feel that this close to Christmas there is the need for a little sanity saving short cuts!  Stormfly also needs her rider because....of course!  So I have made a little Astrid too.  My friend and I are doing a skill swap, I am making x4 little 7" dolls, (a hiccup and an Astrid each) and she is making their clothing.  She loves the little details so I cant wait to see what she comes up with! 

All of this is wonderful and really fun, except the fact that it all came about a little close to Christmas for comfort.  Though if I finish the dolls today, I should be able to sew Stormfly next week, with time to spare though so all is well!

Gift giving will be a simple affair here this Christmas, and in the aim of always being honest money is really tight this year.  Grant is doing casual work over harvest and the work has been sporadic at times due to stormy weather.  He is a hard, reliable worker and is being kept on, even as harvest begins to wind down for which we are very thankful.  Many that started with him have been let go already.

These two sets of dragons will have cost me about $32 in fabric, the rest I have at home already which comes to $16/child and these are one of their major presents.  There will be books, sweets, summer PJ's, some art supplies and maybe a little stocking stuffer from HERE, but gifts will be low key.  The focus is on appreciating what we have, thankfulness, and experiences like seeing the Christmas lights at Lobethal, making things together and spending time with friends and family.     

The thing is this time of year is rife with perfection, expectations, Instagram worthy decorating tips.  There will always be children who get ALLLL the presents.  But that is life, there will always be those with more then us.  Christmas here does not match, and it is certainly not photo perfect.  In the era of Instagram perfect decoration, I encourage you to turn away from the advertising and the hype and focus inwards.  To see the beauty in the imperfect and in the handmade.  To be proud of the wonky handcrafted decorations which have a story and a soul to them, which is impossible to capture when you purchase mass produced items off the shelf.  Make the mess with the cooking and the creating, sing Christmas songs loudly and happily. (and badly if your anything like me.) For the magic of Christmas can never be bought, as it is not in the decorations nor expensive gifts.  It is not in the styling or even the perfectly cooked meal.

The magic of Christmas is in the love, and the togetherness.  It is in the generosity of presence, to say yes to time together, the board games played, the naff Christmas movies watched together with home made pizza on a Saturday night.     

How are you going with your Christmas season?

Dragon Patterns
So the site is clearly not in English, but the patterns are free, and I simply copied the instructions into google translate and printed them off.  They are a little sparse, but having toy making experience I'm pretty confident I can work them out.

Dying in Style
A beautiful essay written by a woman in her final days.  Let us remember what truly matters in life, and put that in the center of all our days and decisions.

Ever Changing
A great post by zen habbits on dealing with change.  So many of us hate change, and it is pointless fighting it.  Instead it helps to embrace change and re-frame it as perhaps a new challenge, or a season.

Gingerbread Biscuits
We will be making a stack of these to gift over Christmas.

The comfort of tradition
I read this blog post from Tales From a Happy House blog and it really resonated with me, I think you will enjoy it too.

Much love,


  1. Those faces of concentration and the beautiful decorations as the the end product are a sight to behold dear Emma. I agree with you 100% regarding what I call the opposite of authenticity at Christmas.

    1. I cannot wait to put up our tree on Sunday when Grant is off work and to hang them front and center! The hand made ones are always my favorites.

      Did you know there are people who change their Christmas decorations every year?

      My favorite part of putting up the tree is pulling out all the hand made ones from previous years and everyone finding their own and remembering the stories behind them!


  2. Those decorations are lovely. And I'm sure your kids enjoy making them. Thousand times precious and beautiful than store bought ones.

    1. Thankyou so much!

      They look wonderful on our newly set up tree.


  3. This is really good blog its great article.Thanks for sharing useful information.
    Handmade Rugs Melbourne

  4. I just read the article "Dying with Style" and wow I am blown away by her positive attitude. What a beautiful woman! Thank you for sharing the link, it is something all of us need to read. This has me thinking about my own life and what I want from it.

    Thank you Emma xxx


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