Advent Calendar Day 9 ~ Grab Bag, Holiday Talents

The photo to the right displays a miniature scene I made years ago. It hasn't been unpacked for several Christmases. I developed the room you see in the display here. I started with wallpaper and then building the fireplace and decorating it. I crocheted a blanket to adorn the rocking chair. Toys were added along with lights to the tree (which needs batteries now) and pictures on the wall. As you can see there are also presents and a rug...and it was so much fun to make!

I have spent most all of my life being crafty. I can remember being about 10 years old and teaching myself to crochet. The first item I made was a scarf. I remember making multicolor headbands too. When I was a freshman in high school I took a sewing class and began making my own clothes. In between crocheting and sewing I enjoyed learning other crafts as well.

Eventually, I started making Christmas gifts, had to start them in August. I have made many an afghan throughout the years. I crocheted a fisherman's cable afghan one year for the person's name I drew from work. It was such a hit, I made the same one for several years. Each year people were hoping I would draw their name, because they wanted an afghan also. It so happened that during that time, because everyone wanted me to pull their name, we chose not to announce whose name we drew. As long as we didn't draw our own name, we were good, and no one knew who drew whose name until it was time to do the gift exchange. Somehow, when you are a "crafter", you never seem to keep anything for yourself. Writing this reminded me that my husband always wanted one of those afghans also. He never received one. Maybe a thought for next year?

Besides being crafty for Holiday gifts, I have also made many holiday decorations, ornaments, tree skirts, and even a tablecloth or two. I have done sand painting, scrap booking, crocheting, knitting, tatting, quilting, sewing, embroidery, macrame and who knows what else.

I often wondered over the years where I inherited my crafting talent. My mother certainly wasn't crafty, nor was her mother. I couldn't remember anyone in the family ever being crafty besides me. I sure enjoyed it, and felt the rest of my family was sure missing a lot of pleasure by not making anything. And, I continued on my way throughout the years.

Through my genealogy I finally realized where I inherited some if not all of this interest and talent. My paternal grandmother, Thina Westby quilted. I didn't spend any time with this set grandparents growing up. A gift of one of her quilts was given to me when I was about 13 which promptly went on my bed. Eventually though, probably from being washed and dried so often, the fabrics started ripping and my mother got rid of the quilt. I always wished I could have that quilt back, I loved it so much.

Years later I was able to get my hands on another one of her quilts, the last one she made that was available. I am so pleased to have it. It will never be on my bed or an y other in my home. It will be saved for my grandchildren to enjoy. It is really the only item I have that is homemade from an ancestor. I wish I could have shared some time with my grandmother, being crafty together.

I still love being crafty and haven't allowed myself enough time to thoroughly be satisfied lately. I have several ideas in the back of my head of things I want to make. I plan to spend a lot of time in the upcoming new year doing just that!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts!


  1. Wonderful post for the holiday season. Thank you for sharing!

    Keep those ancestor stories coming!

    Bill ;-)

  2. Thank you so much Dr. Bill Smith and Herstoryan.

  3. How lucky you are! I have a couple of crafters in my family, and I do try...but the talent skipped me! :-)

  4. Hi Coloring Outside the Lines, It is always hard for me to imagine how some people have talent and others don't. But then I think about trying to paint or do the things I have NO talent for, sing...etc.


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