With the holidays quickly approaching I thought I’d share one of my family’s newest traditions. A few years ago we got rid of the traditional exchanging of gifts and instead opted for a more homespun idea. We make our gifts! Of course there is the occasional package, usually for the little ones in the family, but for the most part we make our own gifts. I love this idea! It is so hard to shop for people and there are too many other factors that make traditional gifting such a headache. Instead, our family gives what they love. My cousin and his wife have an olive tree and last year they marinated olives for everyone and packaged this along with the most delicious rosemary crackers. My uncle makes wine (this is a favorite of mine) and my mom and I always come up with something that is themed….one year we made scrapbooks with old pictures for each family. One of my favorite gifts came a few years ago from my Aunt. She made (I tried this at her ranch and was able to make three imperfect beads…it’s not easy) and brought a whole container of them to our . She then explained that she made all the beads and that we were going to string them and make our own bracelets!!! She brought all the findings, clasps, and chains. It took me forever to make three beads, so I can only imagine how long it took her to make enough beads for all of us girls to make our own unique bracelets. Here are some photos of our bracelets and some other extras. The single beads have been wire wrapped and are ready to go on a chain. I just have the one chain, but switch them out to coordinate. My sweet little cousins who are just in preschool and second grade made glittery ornaments for everyone this last year and they came over to my house and made scarves for the men in our family! And keeping in mind that Thanksgiving is only a few weeks away, I would like to conclude with that I am so thankful our family celebrates the season this way!