By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Gifts from your garden celebrate Nature and complete the cycle of life in your garden: seeds planted in spring grow and flower all summer, you harvest through fall, then in winter you can collect what’s left – leaves, seeds, stems, pretty pods, cones, and colorful berries. Even pedestrian plants can produce wonderful materials – like the twisted dried morning glory vines I yanked out recently while putting my garden to bed.

Last week, I mentioned the cute critters made from natural materials that you can buy all this month at the Brandywine River Museum Shop to decorate a Christmas tree, holiday table, add to a wreath, or top a gift box. But you can also craft your own – just click for photos and detailed instructions from the Museum on how to make a couple of critters like theirs.

It’s a great way to keep yourself – or lots of little hands at your house – busy inside on a winter’s day. And by making gifts from garden leftovers, you can save money while putting stuff to use that would otherwise get tossed in the trash or compost pile.