This year, I have really tried to cut down on the amount of "stuff" that we have around the house and to make sure that the things we do have here are useful. I have also recently been diagnosed with severe dust mite allergy (among other allergies SIGH) and so I really don't want to have little extra things around just to look "cute" (and collect dust.)
And in my own little Simple family, my children, while, still not even teenagers, are growing up WAY too fast (they are 11, almost 9, and 6.) They don't play with "toys" per se much, and the ones that they do are treasures that have been with us for many years, and I don't feel like I need to add to them.
Add to that, I want (well, and let's be honest, kind of need) to make the children gifts. Out in the blogosphere and the web, it seems like many homemade gifts for children are for the younger set. I keep thinking, but I can't seem to come up with any great ideas. Well, I am sewing each of them something, but so far, that is the extent of my ideas. I am also limited by the time I have left until Christmas. I am very busy right now and then I'll be on vacation from November 20th - 28th, so realistically, I only have from November 29th - December 23rd.
There is one good thing - I've cleared out most of the "schoolroom." We have a bedroom in this house that just can't seem to stay the same for longer than a year. It is a really small bedroom - 10' x 9'. Maybe. When we moved in, it was uh, a storage room, I think. Then it was an office, then it was Youngest and my bedroom when he was a baby, then it was an office, then it was a guest room, then it was the school room, and now, I'm making it into a guest room/studio. There will still be some bookcases with school materials because I just don't have another place to store them, but you don't walk in the room and think "schoolroom" anymore. Why is this a good thing? Well, I finally will be able to have a place to set up my sewing machine so that it can be out all the time. I picked up a small desk and a comfy chair on wheels during my "curb shopping" adventures. I need to pick up and install some shelving like this to put my fabric, thread, patterns, etc. above the desk. And now that I have a dedicated space for sewing, I can go in there and lock the door and create things instead of having to do it in the wee hours of the morning on the dining room table.
So do any of you have any great homemade gift ideas for olderish children? FYI, I crochet and sew. I have basic woodworking tools like hammer, saw, screwdriver, etc. and I have basic woodworking skills. I wouldn't say that I can draw or paint, etc., at least not well.