Our do-it-yourself outdoor Christmas decorations began as a way to recycle things that our college age children had left at home. With three teenagers away at college, you can imagine all of the items that I had been stuck with. The do-it-yourself projects began as a way for me to actually use some of the items they had "forgotten" for years. As a seasoned parent, I knew that some things could not be donated to the Goodwill store, for fear they would be a treasured part of their childhood and want back some day. Yet, it was very tempting to give the twelve foot poster of Boys2Men away.
Each of our three daughters had left their exercise balls in their rooms. They are the three foot high air filled balls, that they were going to die if they didn't have. I am pretty sure, two have never been used. Covering each ball in paper mache, spray painting them white, and hot gluing them together became the first step in our nine foot tall snowman. A top hat from the magic faze in 1994, with a matching scarf and mitten set from the Hello Kitty era, glued on red covered rock buttons from the 90s, and our snowman was dressed. His face was made of various felt scraps found in the scrapbook box. Yes, the same scrapbook box that they just had to have, and I have yet to see a single scrapbook page. Our snowman sits under the four oak trees in our front yard. He looks welcoming and festive.
WOW! What a great imagination you have! My kinda girl! I would love to see a picture of the wonderful Christmas decorations you've come with!
You have gotten me in the mood to do some christmas recycling too!
Laura in Louisiana
Yes, we'd love to see pictures of your decorations, they sound darling!!
Your post is so terribly, terribly funny, and so very practical and true! I ( with three kids in college,one a young mom, and the fifth a junior in high school) can TOTALLY relate to the dilemma of what to do with all their leftover treasures cluttering my small house. Oh the fear involved in donating, say, a forgotten old black lamp, etc.... I've always thought I needed to be cautious and "official" in my dispositiion of their stuff (create a permanent shrine,, make a fabulous life quilt of their old favorite clothing....), but I feel very freed by your ideas....thanks greatly for opening up my world to possibilities of having fun with it all and still preserving memories for later in their lives. Hey they still have the option of asking to keep the decorations, right?!
So, I'm encouraged by you to have fun wiith it all, Kids have their stuff preserved, and whimsy for all to enjoy! Thank you for opening my mind to the possibilities of creativity and spunk! ~Laura
Yes, pictures please!
You should be a writer!! What a wonderful read. The ideas you shared and how you described them put a smile on my face. Thank you.
P.S. Those exercise balls have lasted a while and I have a lovely unused one I just had to have. I am thinking orange paper mache and a nice pumpkin look in it's future...haha
WOW! What great ideas. Sounds like your yard is the one everyone should go see for the holidays. I would not have been able to think of 1/2 those things, let alone all of them. Great use of imagination and recycling. Pictures would be nice to see. Thanks for sharing these ideas.
Let me just say - this could be in a magazine its that good! You write very well! Hilarious and clever!
Great article, well written and something I could totally relate to! I, too, recycle my daughter's stuff. I make and sell some of these on my website (link is on my profile). I hate to waste.
Thanks for this awesome article. Keep on writing! You have brightened many with not only the article, but I am sure in the decorations and life in general!
Thank you for all the kind words. I am not a picture taker. I can not operate a regular camera, so a digital would be out of the question. I would gladly volunteer to have a friend take pictures this year of our Christmas mess. I will tell you all now, that we lost all of our black oak trees in the front yard from a wind storn caused by Hurricane Ike three weeks ago, so you will not get to see our snowflake lights. I could have her take pictures of the six tree stumps we have had burning in our front yard for nine days though. Somehow, I do not think it will have the same effect! :)
Again, thank you for all the wonderful compliments. If I waited for the kids to compliment me, without wanting something in return, I would be waiting a very long time. A decade, score, or era might be a good time line!
Haha! The best written post I've ever read on this site. Sounds like we can all relate. "...she laughed and asked me if they had me on medication...." Are you sure we don't have the same daughter?
Oh man, you are funny. I can feel your pain. :)
Your writing was so clear that I can picture your wonderful snowman and snowflakes. I enjoyed your article you really should be published. I used to go to Branson often when I lived in Ozark, MO.It is very pretty there.
Annie Columbia, MO
For years I have cleaned out old toy boxes in the children's rooms and retrieved all the little toys-Happy Meal Prizes, tiny stuffed animals, even a few small lego creations and added a ribbon to them and hung them on the Family Christmas Tree. They continue to bring back fond memories every year, from their first ABC building blocks to the favorite Beanie Babies.
You are a great writer and funny too it's too bad that your trees got taken out. Maybe you can hang the snowflakes off the front of your house? You should get someone to take pics, even if they are just for you!
Add your voice! Click below to comment. ThriftyFun is powered by your wisdom!