The holidays are almost here! A time for friends and family to get together and share in goodwill and cheer. Gift giving is also a big part of the season; a part that I love. It's almost like a game to match the right gift with the right person.
Buying gifts can get expensive. You can save money by making them yourself. It also adds a more personal touch and more meaning to the gift. You may be thinking, "I'm not that crafty." That's OK, there are some wonderful books that break down the crafts. They tell you what you need and give you an easy to follow step by step guide.
When we give a gift, we usually give a card as well. Have you looked at the price of a card lately? My goodness, they can cost as much as a gift. If you want to make your own cards to give, then you should check out "Quick & Clever Instant Cards" by Julie Hickey. The beginning of the book breaks down the equipment, paper, color choice, design and more. It has wonderful pictures that lead you through each step. There are 16 card ideas for all occasions. I particularly like the snowtime sparkle card on page 84.
Another great craft book is "Tape It & Make It" by Richela Fabian Morgan. It has 101 duct tape activities. Some of them would make great gifts, especially for kids and teens to make and give. I particularly love that this book has a section at the beginning about creating duct tape fabrics. It shows you how to do one-sided layered fabric, double-sided layered fabric and woven fabric. Another noteworthy part is chapter nine, which is devoted to seasonal duct tape activities. You can make a hanging tree ornament, a candy cane ornament, a decorative red bow, a mini-wreath, a stocking and mistletoe. If you want to make a more substantial gift there are also instructions for a seat cushion, pillows, a wallet, a tote bag and cellphone case.
Getting crafty can also be a great way to spend time with your family during the holidays. When the kids get out of school for winter break there can be lots of free time. Giving your kids craft activities to do can be a terrific way to fill the time. If you are interested in that, you should take a look at "Teach Yourself Visually Crafting with Kids" by Jennifer Casa. This book, like the others I have mentioned, has great pictures to go along with the instructions. The crafts use many items that can be found around the house. It gives instructions to be playful, adapt and listen -- all good ideas when working with kids.
All of these books and many more can be found at the Dalton-Whitfield County Public Library. If you find you want a little more help with the crafts or if you want something fun and free to do with the family, you should come by the library. We have lots of wonderful activities for all. Just check out our website, www.ngrl.org, and see what the library has planned.
Brandy Wyatt is the administrator of the Dalton-Whitfield County Public Library.