I love the spirit of Christmas. This is one of my favourite times of the year. I love the quality family time; the big family sit-down meals around the dining room table extended especially to host the family; the family carol singing before the Christmas Eve meal; the roast turkey with all the trimmings on Christmas Eve.; the Nativity scene set up by the nephew and nieces. I love giving gifts and I start thinking about what to give from about July! One of the most recent additions to the things I love about Christmas is Auntie Heather’s Santa Workshop.
Over the last few years I have had the pleasure of hosting a Santa Workshop for my nephew and nieces. We start planning it a couple of weeks before the event when I enquire if they have any ideas for their gifts. The event itself usually happens over two days in the first week of their Christmas vacation. The general plan is to assist them in making homemade gifts for their parents and grandparents.
In the process I get to introduce them to different crafts and to encourage their creativity. As they get older and can reach the sewing machine pedal, their projects will include machine sewn items. It pleases me to see their confidence when using the sewing machine and the pleasure they get in sewing the items on their own.
I love guiding the creative process from choosing the project, the materials to use, the method, and the development of new skills. It’s definitely a case of “pay it forward” as I remember my aunts and mother guiding my creativity, and introducing me to different techniques and skills.
After the gifts are made, they are carefully wrapped and labelled, and secreted away for Christmas day. Then there’s the anticipation of my favourite part of “Auntie Heather’s Santa Workshop”, the giving of the gifts. The pride and excitement of the children as they give their gifts to the recipients warms and fills my heart. As the children give their homemade gifts that they have so lovingly made and wrapped, I witness their delight when the gifts are so warmly received. What could be better?
The subtle lesson of Auntie Heather’s Santa Workshop is the joy of giving. I want to draw the focus away from receiving and redirect it towards giving. I hope to impart the message of the joy of giving through personal experience. December 10th, is the first day of Auntie Heather’s Santa Workshop. I don’t know who was more excited, them or me.