week twenty: bottle cap crafts

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Even though I am a foul-mouthed, somewhat mean-spirited (I love when kids fall down! HAHAHA!) beeyatch who’s trying to become a minimalist, I still like to craft. Yes, cross stitching and paper punches aren’t just reserved for prim old ladies who miss the good old days when Murder, She Wrote was on every Sunday night. By the way – that show is the SHIT. And the opening sequence when Angela Lansbury is like riding her bike through her New England town or wherever the hell she was from and then like gardening… TIGHT. I’ve watched reruns on Netflix. Truth.

Anywho, yes, I like crafting. Making stuff with your hands is awesome and people who turn up their noses at embroidery or sewing or glue gun action are basically joyless turds. Who doesn’t want to get down with a glue gun? That’s a bomb diggity girl’s night in right there, no lie.

The problem with liking to craft is that you can – very easily – become a crazy hoarder person and hold onto trash in the hopes that one day you’ll magically glue gun it into something phenomenal that will take your family’s breath away when they open it on Christmas morning. Bottle caps were the key to my Rockwellian crafting dream.

Pre-Pinterest, I saw a tutorial online about turning your used bottle caps (trash) into magnets for holidays gifts (upcycled trash someone else will throw away after Christmas). The idea was that you’d cut out tiny beautiful pictures, glue them into the bottle cap, fill the bottle cap with some sort of toxic chemical or resin or something like that, then hot glue a magnet to the back. Voila! Magnet perfection.

I was so convinced this would be the BEST CHRISTMAS PRESENT OF ALL TIME that I demanded husband start saving all of his bottle caps. To keep things neat, I stacked them on a nice shelf I have in the kitchen. Yeah, a trash collection on my pretty floating wall shelves where I prep our food. House Beautiful, please feel free to give me a call.

This was… hmmm… maybe like three years ago? Three Christmases and no bottle cap magnets. No bottle cap jewelry, dollhouse art or bedside lamps. Let’s face it, people – I’m never making anything with those bottle caps.

I have decided I can accept this. See, I’m not just a serial craft supply saver. I actually do finish some stuff. I really like cross stitching and have vowed to finish baby’s birth announcement sampler by the end of this month. I usually make at least two or three cross stitched gifts for Christmas. I make all of our Christmas cards. And last year, I even made some homemade stamped wrapping paper for holiday gifts.

So I have to learn to appreciate the crafting time I do have and focus on the things I actually enjoy and complete. Not just try everything that looks sexy and fun. I have to be crafting monogamous. Or, at the very least, not be a slutty crafter, flirting with everything that looks my way. (I am talking to you, jewelry-making aisle at Jo-Ann’s!)

So the bottle caps went into the trash today. I screamed a little inside when I saw them there, laying amongst some strawberry stems and banana peel from baby’s breakfast. And, I shit you not, I immediately regretted it.

“Hey ooohhh… didn’t I see some adorable bottle cap mini candle craft on Pinterest?” My inner craft slut started in on me. “Wouldn’t that be an awesome gift? And OH MY GOD they would look so cute on our deck this autumn. I can make orange ones for Halloween!”

I slammed the trash can closed and ate a cookie.

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week fifteen: gift wrap “station”

This is one of those stupid things I purchased after getting married that I thought was required for our house. A hanging-on-the-door gift wrap organizer. You know, for all of those presents I wrap constantly. Look! Four rolls of paper from Big Lots! Plus a spool of ribbon! They need a home. And not just boxed up with the Christmas stuff – that would be too logical. They need a special wrapping-paper-designated organizer. Perhaps one I hang on a doorknob – because that’s just what I need on my office door, a fucking plastic garment bag with cheap wrapping paper tumbling out of it whenever I enter the room. WTF is wrong with me?

This has had a few homes over the years. Hanging off my office door. Hanging off the door in the guest room. Hanging off a hook in the garage. Hanging off a ladder in the garage. Hanging off the door in the soon-to-be-baby playroom. I kept moving it when husband ran into it or the dogs sniffed at it to see if it was something they should pee on.

Over the weekend it was hanging in the garage (This time off some plywood! What a great spot for my gift wrap organizer!) and baby kept grabbing at it when we went outside. He knocked it on the ground twice, then I was all like “Fuck this shit! I don’t need no gift wrappin station no more!” (I said it in my head, lest you worry about me cursing in front of baby.)

I decided to forgo Christmasy wrapping paper from now on. I have a bigass roll of kraft butcher paper in my office I use for packaging up some products I sell. Last year I wrapped a few gifts in it, using cute stamps to decorate the paper. It’s one of the few craft projects I can actually do, as it’s quick, fun and easy with very limited set up and clean up. This Christmas maybe baby can even help, if he stops trying to eat everything he gets his grubby little mitts on.

So this Christmas, we’ll be a little more like this under the tree:

You know, sans the stupid top hat as a star (???). Also, I’ll go out on a limb here and say we will probably NOT put a fucking tumbleweed in our fireplace either. But you get the gist. Butcher paper plus some cute ribbon and maybe some stamping fun. Much better than the garment bag clotting up my doorways. Hurray!