The world is…not so fun these days.
Mortgage rates are through the roof, rent prices are barely manageable, the economy is in the — well if you are a “Christmas Vacation” fan, let’s just say, “It’s full.”
War, poverty, homelessness, gas and heating oil prices, and let’s not forget that groceries cost approximately 750% more than they did just last year.
So, go ahead and decorate.
I’m usually a stickler for no Christmas before Thanksgiving, but I’m giving up the ghost this year.
If you want to put up your tree, sing carols, and put a 7-foot, blow up reindeer in your front yard, by all means — go for it.
We can all use a little extra happiness in the world right now and if something as simple as decorating for Christmas early can make that happen, then do what makes your heart happy.
So go ahead and decorate.
And bake Christmas cookies. And watch Hallmark Christmas movies. Turn your home into Santa’s workshop. Buy yourself an Advent calendar for November AND December. Heck, pick up an extra one to make January a little less bleak too!
Life is too short to not do simple things to make your life a little brighter.
And be sure to get the littles involved too! I found this super cute craft, which is not only adorable, but a great way to create a keepsake to remember how little the kiddos were.
Santa Handprint Ornament
– 4 cups all-purpose flour
– 1 cup salt
– 1.5 cups warm water
Begin by mixing 4 cups all-purpose flour with 1 cup of salt.
Add 1.5 cups warm water until it starts to form a dough.
If it feels a little dry, you can add more water. Add one tablespoon at a time. If it is too sticky, then add a little more flour in.
Knead the dough until it forms a soft ball. You will need to knead for at least 5-10 minutes to get it to a good consistency. Roll it out to about 1/2 inch in thickness.
Press a hand into the dough to make a handprint. Carefully cut out handprints with a knife (adults only). Leave a little bit of space around each finger so that the fingers don’t turn out too skinny once they are baked. Repeat this step 2 more times if making all of the ornaments.
Cut out 4 small shapes for the light bulbs. You can free-hand draw and cut these out with a knife (adults only).
Make a hole with a straw on the top of the middle finger for the elf and reindeer and a hole on the opposite side (fingers hanging down) for the Santa.
Bake for 2 hours at 250 degrees Fahrenheit then let the bottoms of the ornaments air dry on a cookie drying rack for one day before painting.
If you find that the ornaments are still a bit doughy, put them back in for another hour or so.
The thickness of the dough will determine how long you have to bake them for. You can also raise the temperature up to 325 degrees F but do this gradually as they may start to puff up. It is preferred to bake them at 250 degrees Fahrenheit for longer and let them air dry for a few days.
1. Paint the middle of the face and let it dry. You may need 2 coats of paint.
Next, paint the top and thumb red for the hat and the bottom white for the beard.
Seal the ornament before adding other craft items — seal with either mod podge or a clear glaze spray.
Add cotton balls to the brim of the hat.
2. Add the googly eyes and pom pom nose.
Stretch out another cotton ball and glue down on each side of the pom pom for a mustache.
Add the white pom pom to the bottom of the hat.
Make this easy salt dough recipe and turn them into a Santa, elf or reindeer handprint ornament.
Oh, and go ahead and decorate.