Yes, it's December: the month of crafting. I can't tell you how happy it makes me when I get to fire up my glue gun. Bring it on, baby.
Tonight the craft du jour was Dixie cup bells festooned with old buttons I've been carrying around in a sewing kit (yes, a sewing kit) since about the time Jimmy Carter was wearing his cartigan sweater and toting his WIN (Whip Inflation Now) button.
Step 1: take an 8 oz dixie cup and cut off the first few inches from the lip (like where the flowery part is happening);
Step 2: poke a hole in the middle of the cup, and then send a piece of glittery pipe cleaner down the hole;
Step 3: from the pipe cleaner fashion a hook (to hang the "bell" on your tree) and a dangly-thingie that will resemble the bell ringer once you fasten a small colorful bead to the other end of the pipe cleaner;
Step 4: Using your coveted glue gun, cover your "bell" with many sequins, beads, and buttons (often you can find a whole baggy full of each of these type adornments for less than a dollar at Value Village or Goodwill);
Step 5: Stand back and admire your gorgeous creation, fit to rival Martha Stewart (but why would you want to?).
After you've had your fill of bells, move onto . . . using the wooden sticks you've salvaged from Dove bars:
It's easy! Just take 3 popsicle sticks, color with marker, then glue together to make an asterisk. Cover your asterisk ("star") with beads, sequins, and buttons. You can hang your star by putting a thread or piece of yarn through a glued-on button, or by wrapping a pipe cleaner around one of the spokes.
Voila, instant X-mas cheer!
Beware, though: glue guns can get really hot and messy. You have to watch your kids closely (no sneaking off to read a little from the new Best American Poetry and don't even think about writing a poem!), and mine your own self while you're at it (I kept burning myself when the glue oozed out from the button holes). But all in all, a great way to pass the hours while the kids are awake (and a painless and non-whiny screen-free eve--always a feat in our house).
But when the kiddies are tucked into bed, what am I reading? AGNI 68, BAP 2008 (whoa, that's good stuff--you need to read Bob Hicok's poem "Oh my pa pa" right now), and lots and lots of student papers, many of which make me grateful that I am a teacher (and not a Cadillac salesperson).