Tuesday, July 30, 2013


Part of my collection of the numbered Gooseberry Patch Christmas books
For today's book review, I'm going to share another in the Gooseberry Patch/Leisure Arts numbered series of Christmas books.    As I'm sure you've noticed, I'm not reviewing these in numerical order; it's more just that I'm sharing reviews of some I particularly love.  However, let me quickly add that I have found great recipes, inspiring photos and fun gift and craft ideas in each and every one of them.

But Gooseberry Patch Christmas Book 6 seems special to me. 

Photo from Amazon.com
It has many ideas I want to try, as well as some projects I have made already.  Let's look over the chapters and the sections within them.

A Circle of Memories is first.  The family memory wreath, the Memory Journal, the framed hand-and-footprint ornaments with a photo on the reverse side, the memory box -- are all projects I would like to do, and there are many more as well.

The second chapter is All Through the House and it has a number of sections within it to enjoy.  In the "Something Special" section is a sweet baby's first stocking, trimmed with alphabet beads.  My daughter made a variation of this pattern when her little girl was a baby, and she is still using it today -- beautiful!  This section also contains an Advent Countdown made in a picture frame with little pockets to put treats or ideas in.  I've made 3 of these and was so pleased with how they turned out!

"Symbols of the Season" gives directions for a sweet set of symbolic ornaments to make.  These would be wonderful to use in one's own family, perhaps in conjunction with family devotions.  They would also make a nice hostess gift (given as an individual ornament) or as a set for a housewarming or wedding gift.

"Create a Card" is full of fun and inspiring ideas to make your own Christmas cards and even tells you how to throw a card-making party -- sounds like so much fun!  "Kids' Christmas Trims" includes a stocking, pillow, tree, and ornaments to make for or with kids.

"Festive Finery for Bed and Bath" contains fun ideas for quick Christmas pillows, a Santa's wreath, festive bathroom decor, and so on.

"Farmhouse Kitchen Breakfast" gives some great recipes as well as trims for your kitchen and table.  The Scrambled Egg Casserole is excellent, and I love the festive little menu board and the Family Recipe Book.  I've also made the Fruit-Filled Breakfast Cups and they are fantastic.

"Winter Wonderland" contains many ideas and crafts I want to try, especially the Tiny Photo Ornaments and the Felted Wool Stocking.

"Jolly Ginger Boys" is a small section telling how to make a gingerbread man basket and it offers helpful tips for successful Christmas cookie baking.

"Holiday Forecast" shows how to make a wonderful "Let it Snow" doorway, and also how to make Electric Snowflakes for outdoor decor.

"Family Fun Tree" gives great directions for ornaments to make with kids and even a garland made with checkers and dominoes for fun. 

"Warm and Cozy" is a longer section sharing many ideas for using fleece in decor and accessories.  There are ornaments, a garland, tree skirt, wreath trims, large floor pillows and a fleece throw.  Lots of inspiration here!

Under the Christmas Tree gives great ideas for all manner of handmade gifts.  "Little Luxuries for the Bath" has recipes for bath salts and fizzies, lip balm, lotion bars, and much more along that line, not to mention a heating pad, embellished towels, and so on.

"Candle Creations" tells you how to make your own aromatherapy candles  or gives ideas for embellishing purchased ones.  There's a "Just for Mom" section and a "Just for Dad" one too.  There's a "Fancy Footwork" section with slippers and socks, and even a little "Family Friends" bit with ideas for your pets.

Perfect Presents from the Pantry is an inspiration for me, because I love giving kitchen gifts at Christmas time.  There are loads of recipes and packaging ideas here -- just wonderful!  There are even ideas for co-worker gifts.  And there's a cute pattern for a Holiday Apron.  The sections here are "Bountiful Baskets", "Merry Mixers" and "Kitchen Classics".

The last chapter is Christmas Cookery, and it delivers just what it promises -- many great recipes, along  with mouth-watering photos.  "The Main Event" shares ideas for a family holiday meal.  The Sausage-Potato Chowder sounds yummy!  "Fabulous Feast for Just a Few" would be great for a small group or just your own immediate family.  "Holiday Jingle Bell Lunch" presents ideas for a fun luncheon with the girls.    Everything from Granny's 5-Cup Salad (which is wonderful!) to Country Cottage Chicken Salad Puffs to Vanilla Coffee to enjoy with dessert.

"Party Pickups" includes finger foods like appetizers and desserts, not to mention some great-sounding punch recipes, snack mixes, and candies.  I can vouch for the 4-Chip Marshmallow Fudge -- it is amazing!

"You Can Never Have Too Many Cookies" proves that point with page after page of cookie recipes of all types.  The Raspberry Ripple Brownies and the Chocolate Chip Twinkles sound especially enticing.

Lastly, we have "Crazy About Casseroles" which could be such a help with holiday potlucks or even just a simple supper on a busy December day.  The Seafood Lasagna and the Mushroom-Spinach Strata are both pictured and look sooooo good.

 Like all Gooseberry books, this one also has loads of hints, tips, memories and inspiring quotes sprinkled on nearly every page!  I wish that I could adequately convey to you how marvelous this book is, but I know my words are just not enough.  Check it out on Gooseberry Patch.com or on Amazon (where you may well be able to find a good used copy) and see for yourself.   And enjoy!

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  1. Just love my Gooseberry books!!

  2. Me too, Luludou! They are not just to look at, are they? The projects and recipes are great, and I just love the photography in these numbered Christmas books. So inspiring!


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