Homemade & Old Time Families…

Since 99% of our Christmas gifts are homemade each year, the ideas, the sorting and gathering, the creating and the packaging, it all involves the children helping.
I think, in some small way, this helps in reinforcing the meaning of “It’s more blessed to give than to receive.” The girls love to see others open the presents
they so diligently worked on and created. Even if it’s not perfect or Pinterest-worthy, it’s made with hours of love and thought and time.

This week,we made a batch of homemade soy candles …

 We gathered vintage teacups and mason jars from around the house …

 Hot glued the wick to the center of the candle jar ..

We even involved the little ones … they can help …

Or at least keep us company and on our toes. 😉

Our seven year old really enjoyed the science and math part of measuring and watching the temperature while melting the wax…

Once melted, we waited for it to cool the right temperature, added the preferred scents and carefully poured into the jars and teacups…

We waited overnight for them to cool and once cooled, we wrapped and packaged.

How lovely for the girls to give presents made at home, in our own kitchen … !

Someone stopped me at church last week and questioned how do I get anything done, am I overworked and is it too much, how-do-you-handle-five-children- questions …
and while I don’t really feel five children is a lot {I know many families with more children who thrive and operate quite happily in today’s society!},
I reassured her, while there are long days and tired nights, messes and to do lists, it does help when you train and bring your children alongside of you for all the daily tasks and happenings. We work together, we accomplish life together and experience new adventures and trials together. It’s not perfect, we are not perfect but it works. The girls are learning to help and in turn, we have time together, time to talk, to bond, to just be together, all while doing the tasks of life.

I think most people miss out on the joy of this aspect of parenting when all along – it’s a joy to do things together as a family.
Even when it comes to mundane tasks like laundry and dinner cleanup – or the fun tasks of Christmas present making.

I love this poem and need to print and frame it for my kitchen walls!

The Old-Time Family 

It makes me smile to hear ’em tell each other nowadays
The burdens they are bearing, with a child or two to raise.

Of course the cost of living has gone soaring to the sky
And our kids are wearing garments that my parents couldn’t buy.

Now my father wasn’t wealthy, but I never heard him squeal
Because eight of us were sitting at the table every meal.

People fancy they are martyrs if their children number three,
And four or five they reckon makes a large-sized family.

A dozen hungry youngsters at a table I have seen
And their daddy didn’t grumble when they licked the platter clean.

Oh, I wonder how these mothers and these fathers up-to-date
Would like the job of buying little shoes for seven or eight.

We were eight around the table in those happy days back them,
Eight that cleaned our plates of pot-pie and then passed them up again;

Eight that needed shoes and stockings, eight to wash and put to bed,
And with mighty little money in the purse, as I have said,

But with all the care we brought them, and through all the days of stress,
I never heard my father or my mother wish for less.

-Edgar Guest



December 27, 2013 - 1:17 am

Lauren What a precious gift idea! Where did you get the ingredients from? Thanks for sharing these beautiful shots!

December 24, 2013 - 4:30 pm

Nicole Where did you buy all the wax and wicks?!?!?

December 24, 2013 - 4:30 pm

Nicole Where did you buy all the wax and wicks?!?!?

December 20, 2013 - 1:33 pm

Heather What a great poem and I love the soy candle idea. I just bought soy candles but never thought of making them. Thanks for the idea 🙂