Last year, my children spent so many hours making the most delightful nativity set from wood, felt and other natural materials.
I can’t tell you how much joy it brought us to bring this set out again this year.
We remembered so many sweet and funny stories from when we made it.
Kitty laughed as she admitted how angry she felt that her cow didn’t look more like a cow (it was an acorn that she painted in cow splotches) … and today, she couldn’t think why she fussed so much because ‘It looks completely like a cow!’ she exclaimed.
It has reminded us that there is SO MUCH value in handmade.
Here are the links from the tutorials to show you how we made them :
Blessings and magic,
Natural Kids is one of my favorite places to shop for beautiful, natural toys.
I am a member of this special group and I know most of these guys personally… they are moms and dads just like you and me.
I can say without a shadow of doubt that oodles of love and care goes into each treasure they make… they get my seal of approval!
They have a huge selection of Waldorf, Montesori and other gorgeous open-ended play items.
If you haven’t browsed through their gorgeous shops yet, you are in for a treat (and just in time for Christmas too!)
Each shop is listed here : Natural Kids (browse to your heart’s content).
I asked the members to answer some questions for us so that we could get to know them better…
Magic Sponsor Feature
Who are ‘Natural Kids’?
We are a group of artisans from around the world who share a love for handcrafting eco friendly & all-natural toys, clothing, decor and more for kids, and kids at heart.
Their Mission :
We are committed to offering alternatives to mass produced, plastic toys and we share a love for open-ended tools to help kids discover what is new and interesting in the world. We believe that it is best for children’s enviroment and what they wear to be natural and safe.
Their products :
You will find many items that are great for the holidays as well as inspired by the seasons. In our diverse shops of our team members you will find wonderful items for babies and kids of all ages. Many of our sellers pride themsleves on offering open ended items for both boys and girls.
Donni : Why eco-friendly is important?
Kelly (from Mud Hollow):
I believe that searching out eco-friendly goods, especially toys and products for children, is critical if we want to pass on a beautiful planet to future generations. Kids outgrow toys very quickly, leaving piles of plastic behind. When plastic toys break, it can be challenging to fix them, yet the plastic will remain for generations in the the trash heaps. I sincerely believe that toys should be made to withstand play for generations, heirlooms handed down to grandchildren and beyond, reducing the amount of waste generated in today’s world. When they are eventually no longer wanted, toys and products made in an eco-conscious way will return to the earth happily, leaving no trace that they were ever present, and not harming the beautiful world as they decompose. We have already lost too many species to pollution and habitat loss, we must do everything possible to ensure that we do not cause more damage in the buying of, crafting of, and disposal of, our products.
Donni : How did your business start?
Amos (from ApplenAmos)
Back in 2007 our little man Henry was born. With a strong desire to be a stay at home mama, I decided to cash out my 401k and leave my job. We got by for awhile but soon the money was dwindling and I decided to get a job, that’s then the economy tankedand I could not find work.
While I was home, in an effort to save money, I learned to sew, bake, can and make wood toys for Henry.
With a need to create and put food on the table as well as still stay at home to raise my boy- a tiny seed started to take root and Apple n Amos was born. We have never looked back since.
Now fast forward a few years, Henry is now in school and we find ourselves taking care of our newest member, Baby Amelia. It is so much fun creating all new toys for her and then to have them take fruit on our store.
Donni : Why is handmade important to so many moms?
Sara (from Woolies) :
Handmade items are special in so many ways. We have a rather large collection of handmade toys from around the globe – each one, besides being all natural (safe for the earth and kids), has such a wonderful personality and charm. The maker’s mark shines through each one.
Donni : What is your favorite item in your shop right now?
Wendy (BirchLeaf Designs) :
My favorite creations right now are wee Faerie skirts. They are so incredibly beautiful and fun to make! The colors are deep and rich and when I sew these, or prayer flags, I like to envision each color glowing brightly in my body, balancing and cleansing each of my chakras. At the same time, I also send off a little healing prayer and lots of love into each silk as it passes through the sewing machine, so that it may pass onto its new owner.
Donni : Why are you passionate about toys that are made from natural materials?
Becca (from Mama West Wind) :
Simple, beautiful toys that are made from natural materials inspire children to be imaginative. Children are natural storytellers, just listen to any 3 year old spin a tale, it comes so easy to them. I love that my dolls & the toys of my talented teammates help encourage that love of story & creativity.
Thank you Natural Kids, I’m honored to share your work.
Readers, please support these wonderful artisans.
Blessings and magic,
Such exciting news… the Winter Magic Craft Boxes are on their way to lucky children all over the world.
THEY ARE ENCHANTING!
This is a reminder to all of you whose children will be receiving a Magic Craft Box… please let your child open the package herself. Opening the box will be an experience all on it’s own! It is sure to be a treasured childhood memory as they open it to see, smell and touch the magic in the boxes.
The fairies and I have been preparing the Craft Boxes for weeks… adding special touches here and there, until they are just perfect! They truly capture the magic of fairyland with moss and lichen and fairy dust!
What I love most about packaging the Magic Craft Boxes, is watching the fairies with the butterflies who accompany each box to keep it safe. The fairies kiss each butterfly and then gently commanded him into the Magic Box. They sprinkle some fairy dust onto his wings and ask each butterfly to take it’s special wish to a lucky child. I don’t know what those wishes are (wishes have to be kept secret to come true) but I envy every child who receives a magical butterfly wish from the fairies themselves.
The crafts in this years Magic Craft Boxes are wonderful, as usual. You and your little ones will be making :
- a delightful Christmas Gnome Ornament.
- a winter Wonderland Snow Globe.
- a Pine Cone and Colorful Felted Ball Christmas Tree.
- and magical colorful Goose Feathers.
Hours or creative, imaginative, nature-inspired family crafting.
Click on the orange to Get Your Box!
Here are just a few examples from happy crafters…
“The Magic Craft Box was beautifully done, both in quality and the enclosed instructions. Both of my children have each completed all of the crafts and enjoyed the process so much. I would recommend these craft boxes to anyone! There are so many possibilities within the crafts. The shipping was wonderful and there was SO much attention to detail. Thanks so much!” – Vanessa
“The Magic Craft Box is pure delight! Straight from the fairies! My daughter is loving them and the magic packed in. I love them too, having everything ready in one easy package. Thank you so much!” – Lindsey
“My goodness, this is such a brilliant concept. I can’t tell which craft my children enjoyed the most! Opening their Magic Craft Boxes was such an experience for them… it made even my 11 year old start to believe in fairies again! My 3 year old loved being part of making the crafts too. All around, this was a wonderful experience for my whole family. I have already purchased our One Year Subscription – keep the magic coming!” – Denise
Blessings and magic,
Filed Under: Our Magical Life, Things I Make, Winter Crafts Tagged With: Christmas, crafting, crafts, felt christmas tree, magic craft box, Nature -nspired, Pine Cone Gnome, snow globe, tutorial, winter
Please support my December Magic Sponsors by browsing through their beautiful shops.
NEST is such beautiful toy shop filled with stunning natural and Waldorf inspired toys. Modeled after the toy shoppes of Germany, at Nest one can find eco-friendly sustainably sourced heirloom wooden toys & beautiful and practical things for the home. They believe that living sustainably need not be a sacrifice. Fine woolens from Ruskovilla of Finland, beautifully handcrafted figures from Ostheimer of Germany, shaker boxes from Brent Rourke of Nova Scotia. Waldorf-inspired play and Waldorf toys & crafts for young and old. I’m LOVING these fun and colorful building blocks.
Lavender’s Blue Homeschool – offers a blog full of inspiration for holistic homeschooling in the early years and a complete Waldorf-inspired kindergarten and First Grade curriculum.
The Waldorf Homeschool Handbook : Whether you are just starting to homeschool, or always wanted to, imagine this for a second… You feel confident that you are doing it right. The first steps are clear and you know exactly where to find the resources and support needed to be successful. There’s no second guessing. No confusion. No lack of focus.
Without any floundering, your Waldorf homeschooling falls into place with ease, assurance and joy.
(SALE through to 7 December : only $15)
Christopherus Bookstore : We offer a variety of publications and audio downloads of interest not only to homeschoolers but to teachers and other parents too. We take a fresh and practical approach to Waldorf education (grounded in the work of Rudolf Steiner).
Natural Kids – is a group of artisans from around the world who share a love for handcrafting eco friendly & all-natural toys, clothing, decor and more for kids, and kids at heart.
We’re committed to offering alternatives to mass produced, plastic toys and we share a love for open-ended tools to help kids discover what is new and interesting in the world. We believe that it is best for children’s environment and what they wear to be natural and safe.
You will find many items that are great for the holidays as well as inspired by the seasons. In our diverse shops of our team members you will find wonderful items for babies and kids of all ages. Many of our sellers pride themselves on offering open ended items for both boys and girls.
The Magic Onions - toys and treasures for the natural home. I make everything by hand using natural and eco-friendly materials. Bring the gorgeous texture of wool felt into your home with wonderful nature-inspired treasures like felted acorns and colorful felted garlands.
The Magic Onions has enchanting Fairy Garden kits… including this awesome Fairy House Kit, complete with a myriad of natural building materials for fun Fairy House construction.
The Puppenstube : Dolls and toys that speak to one’s heart and soul are truly a gift. I offer you this line of dolls handcrafted in the Waldorf tradition. They are suitable for any age, from the very young to the young-at-heart.
All my dolls are one of a kind – even though some may look similar because of the same materials used, each has her/his own character. I hand-make them with careful attention to details and craftsmanship using natural, and whenever possible, recycled fabrics in a variety of textures and colors and 100% new wool for filling.
Whole Family Rhythms – a series of seasonal and monthly guides created and designed to help Mums (and some Dads) maintain a steady rhythm in their home. The rhythms include unstructured, child-led play both outdoors and indoors; early childhood stories and fingerplays; weekly bushwalking themes; daily art, handwork or creative projects; holistic baking and cooking recipes for the whole family as well as weekly caregiver meditations and projects. Although Whole Family Rhythms focuses primarily on the ‘early years’ the daily activities are flexible and varied enough to inspire and work for families of all ages and sizes.
Artterro : Here at Artterro we make Eco Art Kits, and there’s nothing else quite like them on the market. In 2008, Artterro founder Forrest Espinoza was shopping for a craft kit for her young sons, and she noticed lots of uninspiring projects, cheap materials and wasteful packaging. She decided to make a high-quality, eco-friendly, engaging art kit so that parents would have a convenient way to bring art into the home and have a great time as a family. Our 11 titles make it easy to explore needle felting, decoupage, art journaling and more. Each kit is assembled by hand in Madison, Wisconsin, and contains beautiful, inspiring materials. An ideas sheet gives inspiration but never dictates what your final product will look like. Our mission is to bring creativity into people’s lives by offering fun projects with quality, sustainable materials and provide friends and families a wonderful art experience.
Pipsticks : provides sticker subscriptions for sticker lovers around the world. Designed to tickle the imaginations of kids, crafters and pen pals everywhere, Pipsticks brings a beautifully designed pack of stickers selected from high quality international suppliers to its sticker club members each month. Pipsticks also offers gift subscriptions at a range of price points – perfect fun for the holidays.
Teaching Children Music : My name is Tamsyn and I love music. I got my bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from USU. I spent many years teaching private piano lessons until I had children of my own. I have attended several children workshops on how to teach children music. I really like the Kodaly method, but have adapted a lot of different techniques for my own children.
Twig and Toadstool – a gorgeous blog written by mama friends, Maureen and Shanti. Join them as they explore natural crafts and happy family life.
Thank you for supporting our Magic Sponsors and please remember …
I’m passionate about connecting small businesses with customers who value them. If you are interested in becoming a Magic Sponsor, please click here for sponsorship information.
Blessings and magic,