i've been really careful to try not to overuse the cliched phrases that most people use after a loved one passes away such as "mom would have wanted it" or "if there's one thing i've learned from all this." but truthfully, it would be a lie to pretend like i didn't learn quite a bit from the whole situation. i touched on it a little bit when i wrote about the amazing quilt mom had to leave unfinished, but i really have thought quite a bit about finishing projects. it's a tricky thing to leave something unfinished because, with my mom for example, although the things she started can be completed now that she's gone, it's impossible to know how she would have made them or to make them in the same way she would have. in some situations, it's now impossible to know even why she was making certain items or who they were intended for. it's very typical of me to have several (and i mean several. half a dozen to a dozen at any given time) projects in various stages of completion around me all the time. i used to enjoy picking one up and working on it for a little while and then moving on to something else, or getting a brilliant idea for a project and realizing about halfway through the execution that it was not such a brilliant idea at all.
since christmas two years ago, i've wanted to make an advent garland of little mini stockings that could hold a little piece of candy or a toy or a verse to read to count down to christmas. i had seen lots of inspiring ideas of what i had in mind, and now that i keep somehow not getting it done, i've come to a shocking realization. they don't all have to be handmade... i will most likely get the garland done and able to enjoy it much more quickly if i loosen my grip a little bit on my obsession and perfectionism.
shocking, i know.
so, in that vein, i started collecting a few non-handmade cute mini-stockings that i found super cheap on the after-christmas clearance at target and added them to two that actually are handmade, but not by me (i bought them at an estate sale a few months ago).
left to right: 1 is a gift card holder from target, 2 and 3 are red and cream handmade and hand-sequined felt found in a bag of random ornaments (all for $1) from an estate sale, 4 is a crocheted ornament from target, and 5 is a "mini stocking" i think meant to hold a small gift, also from target (yay target).
so, twenty more and i'll be good to go. i've yet to decide how or if i will add the days of the month to them or not. i really love the navy blue one with the felt snowflakes appliqued and stitched on here and there. spend a little while clicking through the incredibly cute ideas on flickr, and i promise you'll want to attempt one of some sort, even if you don't consider yourself particularly "crafty." hopefully i'll get mine finished and ready to use this coming christmas.