If you discovered one of these snowmen crafted from a couple of grapevine wreaths on your doorstep, a park bench or somewhere around Washington with a sign that said “Take Me Home,” you were the recipient of a bit of Christmas spirit that a group of friends hope they can keep going all year long.
Seasons Greeters is a newly formed, nondenominational group of community persons who want to “brighten up spaces and light up hearts through seasonal camaraderie-crafting and anonymous gifting.”
For the last several years, a group of 20-plus friends have been meeting for occasional crafting nights, and this year they decided to use their fun to bring smiles to people who may be feeling a little low this holiday season, for whatever reason.
“Could our snowmen’s magical hats unconsciously give hope that the magic of a kind spirit in the world is still very real? We hope so!” said Becky Obermark, one of the crafters.
She started a Facebook page for Seasons Greeters, suggested the first craft of the grapevine snowman that she had found on Pinterest and posted a list of supplies needed to make one.
The group met Thursday, Dec. 7, in a breakroom area at the Bank of Washington’s Downtown Washington branch.
With Christmas music playing in the background, they set to work crafting their snowmen using materials they had either purchased or pulled out of their own closets and basements.
“This is an old New Year’s Eve hat,” said Sheila Newman, showing how she had cut it in half to place at an angle on her snowman’s head.
She had an extra hat and offered it to her fellow crafters for their snowmen.
Newman also had brought old Christmas decorations that she no longer liked to pull apart and use components for dressing up her snowmen, along with a large red wire and mesh ribbon that she was using to make a scarf.
The ladies were having fun as they crafted together, talking about old times and future plans and sharing tools, supplies and ideas for how to decorate and craft their snowmen. That’s the camaraderie part of the get-together.
The women couldn’t remember how long ago they’d met or even how. It was probably through the Lions Club, the annual Art Fair Winefest or another volunteer group, they said.
Of the 20-plus friends who were invited to the crafting night, only four were able to make it. Illness and hectic schedules this time of year limited many of the women from coming.
Some of those who couldn’t attend the group crafting night said they planned to make their snowmen on their own and still give it away.
Each crafter was given the freedom to decide who the recipient of their snowman would be. Some already had ideas, people they knew who needed an emotional boost. Others were thinking of taking theirs to one of the residential care facilities.
“It doesn’t really matter where it goes; the intent is to lift some spirits and have fun,” said Obermark. “There is a need for a little happiness in everybody’s day.”
The hope is that by leaving these snowmen for others to find and keep, the feelings they create will have a domino effect.
“That’s the thing about goodwill,” said Obermark. “You do something nice for someone, and before you know it, that person wants to do something nice for another person, and it spreads. That’s the idea.”
More Crafters Welcome
Obermark is hopeful that more women will join them for future Seasons Greeters get-togethers.
“We want to spread the word,” said Obermark. “There is strength in numbers — the more, the merrier. If you can spread a good word and a good deed, that’s the idea, to lift spirits.”
Anyone who wants to participate can connect with the group through Facebook. Search for Seasons Greeters.
While they don’t have any plans yet for another crafting night, the ladies said they don’t intend for it just to be a Christmas season happening.
“It could be for Mother’s Day, Easter, anything,” said Obermark. “That’s why we called it Seasons Greeters.”