I made a few gift baskets with vintage postcards ($5 for a pack of 30 and split them up amongst the baskets) recycled old candles and made new ones, bought a pack of $1 store glycerin soap and melted it down to make my own soaps. I used cookie cutters as a mold and added EO & dried flowers to the melted soap as well. In my grandmas I added a few balls of yarn I found at the thrift. I also made my own bath salts with sea salt, EOs and dried flowers/herbs.
For the men in our family I made our own meat rubs. I reused old altoid tins and decorated them. We also printed up the recipe for the rub along with several others rub recipes and BBQ tips on index cards and laminated them. Put hole punch in the corner and added a keyring for homemade recipe book. I personalized each page with a cute drawing of a grill, beer bottle, wine glass or corn cob ect. what ever that person liked as far as food.
For friends we made our own mixed CDs and handmade the covers (I love to collage). We also made our own 1inch buttons for them and screen printed our own post cards.
For the grandmas, we found a great deal on aprons (99cents ikea) and put the kids hand prints on the aprons and added a saying. Something like Grandmas little cooks or helpers or something, I forgot but DD made a matching one for her to use while at grandmas.
I got them each a large wooden, hand-carved train/conductor whistle for $1 each, and I also got DS1 a "Go Fish" card game set for $1. It's Crayola brand, and they are nice, thick, sturdy cards that come in a box.
So far I've spent $4.76 on Christmas. DD has two stocking stuffers, and DS1 has three. Pretty amazing!
18 yr old sister
9 yr old brother
20 yr old step-brother
20 yr old step-brothers girlfriend
18 yr old step-brother
12 yr old brother
7 yr old brother
5 yr old brother
3 yr old sister
1 yr old twin brothers
Mother in law
Father in law
Sister in law (23)
Brother in law (20)
Nephew (1 in Sept)
DH's best friends 2 little girls (1 and 4 months right now)
My dad's parents
3 family members from my dad's side when we draw names
Right now I know that I'm doing bath items (baby wash *I have a ton of coupons lol* and bath toys) for all the babies. My 3 yr old sister is getting cheap nail polish, hair clips, etc she's all girl! lol
SIL and brother's girl friend will get BBW stuff during the Semi-Annual sale. :-)
Thats all I got so far. LOL I can make gifts for my moms family and dads family but DH's family has to be store bought. *rolls eyes and groans*
Mama to 10 so far:Mother of Joey (23), Dominick (15), Abigail (13), Angelo (10), Mylee (8), Delainey (6), Colton (4), ID girls Dahniella and Nicolette (2 in July), and Baby 10 coming sometime in July 2015.
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If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!
She does some awesome "sitting poppet ladies" that are really cool. In this months cloth paper scissors there is a step by step how to.
Heres one of her poppet ladies
I think for my mom and MIL im going to do a series of their faces from when they were younger till recently. ITs very easy to put together. Go to your book store read the section on the how to.
5yr old dd
3yr old dd
and 5 other gifts which we will draw names for.
Now for ideas....
baby is easy- soft cloth or wooden teether, new jammies and a book
Usually I have ideas but this year is a blank.
Dh, Me , DD 10 , DD 7 , DD 4
We , , , , not in that order
I saw something today that gave me an idea: a tissue paper flower kit. The Discovery store was selling it for $20, but all it was was precut tissue paper in assorted colors, green pipe cleaners, precut green tissue paper leaves, and a little vase. Oh, and directions, but really, 5 minutes of hands-on time with the giftee would take care of that!
I'm totally doing this for our 5-year old niece!
Sabrina , mom to 4 fab kids!
last year I made lavender rice pillows, lavender e.o. spray and pumpkin bread. This year I am starting to make jams with all the fresh fruit thats around, and I'll be putting some up for gifts.
I also made dd a no sew tutu which only took we about an hour to make, soo easy, and I just used old fabric and ribbons I had.
Potted plants are a nice gift you can find some nice pots at a garage sale and transplant or start them from seeds in time to have something nicely growing by then.
Keeping an eye out now for sales is a great idea. I did that last year and ds got a wooden pirate ship set for less than half the original price, but I had to buy it in July and hide it in the closet for months!!
Oh, also the trading post here is a great place to score nice cheap toys!
Saamy Student mama to and and
$3 at the thrift!
Im going to make a small train table for him out of found scraps/pieces of wood. This will be for his b-day tho. Its in August.
I have been a maker for several years now. I'll share my tips...
Let's just say I have a serious canning problem, er, um, I mean Hobby, yeah, that's it! But the baby is hampering that this year, and last year was hard to. Who wants to stand in front of a stove for 8 hours over boiling water when preggo? Oh, the ankles!
Anyway, I take my preserves & pickles and make gift baskets. I've actually started giving less, since I have a sneaking suspicion my IL's just empty them out and give me the jars back, but I can't be sure.
So, I buy cheap baskets. I also make herbed vinegars or sherries and oil. I just bought (last year at ollies) the Betty Crocker Ultimate Holiday Cookbook, let's see if I can find it on amazon....hmm none of those look right, I'll check tonight. Anyway, it has additional recipes I made last year for things like chocolate covered pretzels & candy canes & spoons. As well as mocha mixes and others. Things it seemed to me were more likely to be consumed quickly than left to be wasted in the jar and tossed out. (I'm sure they did it!)
I also scour dollar stores & TJ Maxx & border's for things to add to the basket Like:
Chinese Yo Yos
Tiny cookbooks (good to go with things like spreads or herb rubs)
Magnetic Shopping list pads
Cheap holiday CD's (scored a bunch at the dollar store)
Picture frames (we have a nice photo printer, so we can put them in cheap frames)
I arrange them nicely and hand them out, one per family. Very cheap. I'd say, all in all, about $20 each basket including preserves, book, CD, yo yo, frame, pic, and the basket! (That's for the big family basket, little basket for friends, probably like $5 to $10 - and it's spread out over the year, not all at once!)
In previous years, we have had calendars made. The year we went cross country, we made about 15 with the pics we took. We got a deal at Staples for what amounted to about $11 each. Now that I have a good printer, though, I can make them at home. I can "borrow" binding material from work, or you could probably get them bound for a dollar or two each. With the kiddo, who doesn't need more pics of our cute little man?
Oh, I've recently picked up crocheting again, so I plan on making some scarves or something.
But with my *mad* lay out & design skillz this year for father's day I made a memorable book for DH. You can buy board books at the craft store, and make them into whatever you want. I made a book called "The story of me & my daddy" with lots of pics of the first 6 mos of DS & DH fun times together. I was thinking about doing this for the family, and giving it to grandparents, or having them professionally printed. Found a great site to do it for not too expensive...they look really nice. I'll find the link and post it...
So, that's my plan. Of course, with DS, we'll get him something special. Plus it was my promise to him that he would never get the combo xmas/bday present that plagues all december babies (myself included). I want to try to cut down on his plastic toys and convince the fam to stop buying him crap.
Okay, that's it for now!
Also a great place for cheap toys is shopgoodwill.com usually people dont bid on the wooden things because they dont treasure them like we do!
Saamy Student mama to and and
Originally Posted by hklinefelter22
Let's just say I have a serious canning problem, er, um, I mean Hobby, yeah, that's it!
My canned goods went over SO well last year that I'm doing it again this year. In addition to the usual pickles, jams, relishes, and fruit-in-syrup, I'm planning to add some funky things this year--BBQ sauce, honey mustard, pesto, blackberry liquor sauce. Jam is very easy to make, even for newbies, and you can check out a book on canning from the library.
If you have a few herb plants, you can make some dried herb blends and put them in pretty bottles. I've already decided that I'm making a Simon & Garfunkel blend--parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme. It's for chicken, and I'll round it out with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. I'll probably also do an Italian blend--basil, oregano, parsley, and garlic powder.
I grow my own popcorn and may give some of that in pretty containers.
I've acquired a lot of holiday tins over the years, and I need to fill them with food and regift them, LOL--cookies and candy for the sweet tooths, and spiced nuts for those with hotter palettes.
I need to start checking out thrift stores for vintage T-shirts with band logos, quirky sayings, product promotions, etc. That kind of thing is right up my teenage brother's alley, and he has no qualms about wearing secondhand.
I'll try to think of more to add later.
I'm planning to add some funky things this year--BBQ sauce, honey mustard, pesto, blackberry liquor sauce.
If you have a few herb plants, you can make some dried herb blends and put them in pretty bottles. I've already decided that I'm making a Simon & Garfunkel blend--parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme.
Oh, and as for Scarborough Faire - I made this Scarborough Faire Apple Jelly for my wedding favors! The recipe for spiced apple jelly came off a box of lids, i think, and the spices I had, were, do I have to say it? Oh, man, I have issues!
Careful, Jennisee, from one addict to another, trust me when i say it is easier and cheaper (and in my case, tastier!) to buy bbq sauce from the store! I spent 14 hours making bbq sauce 2 years ago, only to end up with like 6 - 1/2 pints. Sooo not worth it! I did pick up a good tip of making butters (apple, peach, tomato) in the slow cooker, after I also spent 12 hours stirring my peach butter also only to get about 6 - 1/2 pints. Thus, I think, my, err, "problem"!
For young children, I remembered something my local library did. They had a reading program, and one of the prizes was a "traveling fun pack" that they made on their own computers and printed--crossword puzzles, word searches, coloring pages, travel bingo (pictures of things you would see while driving), list of the 50 states for looking for license plates. I think it also included a pencil, a crayon or two, an eraser, and a piece of candy.
- handknit stocking from stash yarn $0
- candyland rug game (big rug , and it's a game too, bonus!) $2 salvation army, unopened and unused
- tan crocheted bag keeper (she requested it) $0 (yarn from stash)
- a bunch of thrift store cardigans (she constantly wants mine, so these aren't really a gift just a quick wanting my stuff kind of thing) $1.50
- blue crocheted bag keeper $0 (yarn from stash)
- a cool, dragon tea pot from a garage sale, very unique looking $2
- small box of unopened golf balls, garage sale $0.25
- Vintage Star Wars collectible glass $2
- dark blue crocheted bag keeper $0 (yarn from stash)
Okay, I have to think on the rest. I know I've made more things but not sure who to give it to yet.
I'd like to also make homemade Irish Cream for FIL. More added later!
The biggest hurdle we have around the holidays is that we both come from more-is-better families, particularly at Christmas. We mostly do thrift gifts, which is a step in the right direction...
I mentioned this to my DH the other day ..
I'm going to do Christmas on the cheap this year .. for a number of reasons
--why spend the money(that we don't have) to buy "something" .. that may get shoved in a closet, or tossed to Goodwill
--we both have large families, and for the life of me, I can't get anyone to draw names!!
I like getting gifts for people that they ENJOY and USE ... instead of just getting just anything ...
What I did last year ...
--earrings for the women/girls .. took me about 1 minute to make a pair! Hobby Lobby had the hook thingys, as well as really pretty pre-made straight pins with beads .. all you had to do was put them together
--WINE MARKERS --- these turned out so pretty, and I think I still have some sets left over to give as teacher gifts this year
Things I am considering this year ...
--peppermint brittle (piece of cake to make, and I could package it up cute)
this is for sale on websites for $9 and up
--chocolate covered pretzels .... I've done these for YEARS, since I was a little girl! This year, I'm going gourmet, and doing them fancy, with some toppings, like here ...
I'm going to do the big pretzels, and maybe the rods. My idea is package up 12 big pretzels for a family(couple, etc), or 18 rods. I may package up some minis for the kids. A lot of the price when buying 'store bought' things is the packaging/presentation, so I want to spend some time/thought about how I'm going to wrap these up.
Another idea is chocolate covered spoons ..... dip plastic spoons in chocolate, wrap up pretty and give to folks to use with coffee ...
There are some ideas for packaging here ...
I read in one of these threads ...
Buy school supplies (extra) NOW while they are on sale, like pencils, pens, markers, crayons. Put these aside for a crafty gift later. I'm going to pick up a few sand pails on clearance at the end of summer, and package these up for the nieces and nephews.
Clean out your bookshelves, and pick up some books you want for next to nothing. All you pay is postage (less than 2.50!)
Earn giftcards to give as presents ...
With a bit of planning, I'm going to do this Christmas cheap ... saving for re-doing some of my house!
Keep the ideas coming!!
Catholic homeschooling mom of 5 - a teenager, a kindergartener, twin boys and a tiny princess. Follow the Adventures!
I think I'm going to try to make a couple of the apple slice wreaths this year too.
Good luck frugal mommas!