When we put our hard work into making gifts for our children it can often times seem futile… at first. You don’t necessarily spend less, and you always work harder to get a great outcome. Then when they open these things that you painstakingly knitted/beaded/sewed/sculpted/sawed… the value of the handmade gift is often lost to your child… at first. Sadly, on the big day it’s just another toy in a pile of toys. My children have received many handmade gifts and we’ve been through this a few times.
So why do I keep crafting for them? Because they don’t forget who creates for them…. I’ve never heard them say “how sweet, a factory in another country made this gift for me!” But I have heard over and over again “my Mommy made this for me!” That’s why I do it.
My last post was full of little DIY gifts that would be perfect for the advent calendar. Now here are my top 10 big gift projects for 2014:
1. Boo Boo Kit | A Mom’s Take
I don’t like to say no to my kids plastering themselves in band-aids, but I don’t want the to deplete our real first aid kit either. So this project from A Mom’s Take will be a nice easy project that they will love to use.
2. Solid Wood Doll House | Young House Love
My daughter has already asked Santa for a doll house! And of course I don’t want to settle for one made in a factory and assembled with glue alone. I want her to have one that is not quite perfect but made with lots love. I can totally do this!! (Or at least I know my husband can!)
3. Kid’s Size Work Bench | Honey Bear Lane
My 5 year old son is ready to move away from toy tools to appropriately sized/powered real tools. I plan to give him his own set of tools and a cool place to put them. I love these tips from The Family Handyman on how to introduce real tools.
4. Play Kitchen | Ana White
We actually already made this one and because of how well it turned out, I knew I should share it. If you’re the building type be careful when you go to the Ana White website, you may never leave ’cause it’s so awesome!
5. Rainbow Rocker | Ramblings From the Burbs
I love the colors, the template, and the neat 2-way use of this adorable toy. This is a must-make for me this year!
6. Lego Tray | Somewhat Simple
Wow… DIY Lego containment! Your
feet kids will love you for this one!
7. Fabric Dolls | Make It & Love It
This is sort of a challenge to myself. I really want to make a doll (or 2) for my daughter and these are so cute and seem like something I can do. They even include patterns for the clothes!
8. PVC Pipe Building Kit | A Mom With A Lesson Plan
This would go along perfectly with the work bench and tools for my son. I’ll even make sure it includes all the right parts to make a marshmallow gun!
9. Super Hero Fort Kit | Meg + Andy
You can’t convince me that there’s a single kid out there who doesn’t love a good fort. This kit is so cute and easy, even for the novice DIYer!
10. Explorer Kit | The Merry Thought
With our propensity to go out hiking and exploring, this would be so perfect for my kids!
If you’re still with me you probably think I’m crazy for having all of these projects on my list. The truth is… I am crazy… and overly ambitious… and I’m sure I won’t be able to do ALL of this. But I’ll try because I can’t wait to hear “Mommy made this for ME!”