Friends that create together, stay together!

Last weekend was my favorite annual gathering – our Umpteenth Annual Ornament Exchange. We have but one rule… it must be handmade!  Each year we get better and better – and this year was certainly one of the best. Every single ornament was adorable and coveted!

The Ornament Exchange is an evening of food, friends, interesting conversation and creative sharing. This was the first year we went into heavier topics like gun control and the electoral college voting system in the States, but the discussion inevitably turns towards some kind of sex talk. It’s true with my group of girlfriends – us women do talk more about sex in group settings than our men.

Here’s my group of girlfriends – 2 are Swedish born and the rest of us are love immigrants.

handmade ornament exchange

If I may take a moment and step away from humble, our ornaments this year were fab-u-los-o! First up is this cute little snowman, made with stacks of felt squares.

handmade snowman ornament

Next, feast your eyes on this cute little rolled Christmas tree.

handmade christmas ornament

As I said, a lot of eating and a lot of talking!

ornament exchange

I made a recycled Tshirt Christmas tree… took me FAR longer than I anticipated to get it done, but when I did, I was SO happy with the results.

recycled tshirt christmas tree ornament

And I got to go home (okay, I was already home since the party was at my place) with this little cutie pie ornament made with a map of Rome and a few little Santa friends havin’ a good time!

handmade christmas ornament

Time for more chatting…

handmade ornament exchange

… and more ornaments. This globe was made from Nepali wool by one of our friends who is preparing to open an orphanage in Nepal – how’s that for an undertaking?

handmade globe ornament

This little cross-stitch beauty was made by our ornament exchange virgin – it was her first time and she was worried she didn’t have any creativity. Really?

handmade ornament

We stopped talking in between, just long enough to take some snapshots.

ornament exchange

And then, back to the ornaments. The brightest prize goes to this ornament adorned with children’s beads. Who doesn’t love pink dolphins?

handmade christmas ornament

This last little recycled sweetie was just too fun! A Nutella lid, some recycled wire, plastic bottles, and nail polish was all it took to create sing-song birdie in a cage.

handmade christmas ornament

We even took time during the evening to create together. I’d found these cute little star ornaments that even came with a how-to video. And if you’ve ever seen my recycled magazine mirror, you’ll know I’m a sucker for anything made with recycled magazine pages.

recycled magazine star ornament

recycled magazine star ornaments

So we got to go home not with our exchanged ornaments, but a 2nd recycled ornament that we created together. Bonus!

And of course, My wonderful Swedish viking made the evening all the more special! He spent the evening catering to our group – baking kanelbulle (cinnamon buns), serving his handmade chocolate mints, making sure our cups were filled with tea and coffee, and generally being the great guy that he is!

Ah, another year, another wonderful evening of friends and creativity. I can’t wait ’till next year!

Until next time…


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