Sunday, December 21, 2008

2008, Best Gifts and Projects From The Heart

Although the year hasn't quite ended yet, and I don't know what I am getting for Christmas, I felt like writing this now, a profile of my favourite gifts and projects from the heart for 2008. Some are gifts I have given, and some are gifts I have received.

Friendship Book
This was the first project I featured in Easy Giving 101 on Bigblog but it was an idea introduced into my circle of friends in 1998. You can buy a lovely notebook, or decorate one yourself, and the concept is that you write lovely messages to your friend in it, and they keep it and it grows over the years. It is a lovely thing to turn to when you are low in spirit or feeling sentimental and I have even taken mine with me to hopsital. My friendship book has greeting cards written by friends in it, handwritten notes, quotes and poems as well as doodles and photos, pressed flowers and embellishments.

Share A Precious Moment
I took my father on an outing this spring, to share a precious moment with him. Last year he was critically ill and had a second major heart surgery, while he was in hospital two mares in paddock in our hometown gave birth to the most beautiful foals. My mother and I drove past them everyday on our way to Fremantle to visit and care for Dad. This October marked one year from his surgery, so I took him to pat the yearlings, and reflect on their and his own impressive progress. It was one of the most special and meaningful times I have shared with him.

My Charm Bracelet
For my birthday this year I was given one of the new 'add a charm' bracelets and received some very meaningful charms to put on it. The first was, of course, a star! Then a ladybird (they are special to me, and when I was Mary in a nativity play in a theatre, on the night, a ladybird was on the face of baby Jesus, I always wondered how it came to be there, but it was a magical moment in my life). A cat, dragonfly, love heart, and cup cake were the other charms.

Gratitude Journal Project
The best gift to give is a gratitude journal as it encourages positive reflection and transforms the recipients life. I featured a project on Easy Giving 101 Bigblog, 'Gratitude Is A Garden.... come in and plant a seed'. With an artists journal embellished with scrapbooking paper and materials to welcome the recipient into the garden.

Light Catcher
I had the tremendous privilige of making a new friend, Cheryl Radford this year, through blogging, and she was very kind to send me a crystal light catcher in the form of a star, now we have lightcatchers in our respective rooms to catch the morning sun and brighten our world. The best gift of all though, is the friendship we are growing, one of the most enriching experiences of my life.

Decorated Photo Frames
For my nephews birthday this year, I purchased plain wooden photo frames, and decorated them by gluing wooden buttons the shape of hearts onto the frames, making them unique and original. It was very easy and still looked masculine.

Mosaic Mirror
I was given a mirror with a mosaic frame, of purple tulips, a very thoughtful birthday present as tulips are my favourite flower and purple is my favourite colour. That was a very personal selection and I enjoy the gift very much.

Photo Music Montages
This year for my father's birthday I made him a music montage of all the best photos of his paintings, and some personal and family photos set to 'Vincent' (Starry Starry Night). I then caught the montage fever and made one themed on my own life, my mother's, and all the children in the family, that one is very popular, set to 'Call Me Irresponsible'.

Decorated T-shirt
This project was also featured on bigblog, I had a new black tshirt from Kmart, which I washed and dried. I then measured out the centre of the shirt, and marked it with a pin. Using metallic silver fabric paint from Spotlight, I painted a heart on the shirt. I waited two days for it to fully dry to safely wash and iron the shirt, I then sewed on a border of pink and purple sequins (alternating between the two colours) and one feature bead for the base tip of the heart. It has been very popular when I have worn it out and about, and you could easily paint other designs, flowers, dollar signs, musical notes and motifs...

Earring Pin Up Board
I bought a pin up board at Big W, and a pack of 100 gold drawing pins, a reel of ribbon from Cost Plus, and selected a large fabric remnant from my bag at home. I pinned the silver fabric onto the board and then laid out strips of ribbon in a grid pattern, securing at each end and at every intersection with a pin. I then placed subtle dressmaker's pins here and there on the ribbons where I hang earrings with the backs tucked under the ribbon, they make a beautiful display and the earrings never tangle, and as they can all be seen at once, it makes selecting a pair to wear very easy.

These have been my favourite gifts and projects of 2008, I look forward to sharing many more with you in the new year, have a safe and wonderful time, xxx Starry


Chez said...

Starry, this is a great Post. As usual!
I find your suggestions so very thoughful and I really must take the time in the New Year to copy them an put them into a folder. I love the way you do the work for me. Our friendship brings a warmth into every day...
Thanks for the 'special' mention. Sent a butterfly light catcher to a friend (bereaved Mum) in the US but as you can imagine there is no sunshine at the moment. She has delighted me with pics of the ice and snow storms...
Good to see you getting into this. I will tackle the music in the New Year.
Love and rainbows from me to you...

Chez said...

Starry are you having any problems with your spacing when doing the Posts.
My spacing on the Post is quite different to the way I type it in. Any ideas?

Starry said...

oh good grief, I only just got this comment you left ages ago, I haven't been coming to blogger - busy, slack, no success posting photos (until today, yay!).
No my spacing is okay the only problem had been not being able to load photos. I had a problem on bigblog with your birthday post as the print came out tiny - it was written very large!
Sorry this is so late!

lakebrat said...

Ohhhhh what wonderful ideas! Thanks so much I'll will for sure refer back to this for some great gift ideas they would be great for any holiday and not only Christmas, but birthdays, Mothers Day. Or for just alittle love gift to a friend. Oh the possiblities. I love it. Thanks again for sharing.