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Start any holiday (Halloween through Christmas) crafting now, especially if you do craft shows or just for gifts. This way you won't be stuck at the last minute trying to finish gifts. At the very least, make a list of crafts and items needed. Some can be probably found at yard sales or clearance sections.
By Carol from Massachusetts
For giving cake, cookies or candy at Christmas, to new neighbors or a sick friend, I look a garage sales, Goodwill or sales at retail stores for containers. Today at the General Dollar Store, they had their summer dinnerware on sale for half price. I got eight nice sized, bright colored dinner plates for a total of $2.50. They will make great plates for the rum cakes I give away at Christmas and look so much better than just a paper plate.
I have a very elderly aunt, who is diabetic, and a very strict vegetarian. She also refuses to eat onions or garlic. Christmas was a real stumper for me until I came up with the idea to can some things for her when I did my own canning.
I make her vegetable soup without her hated onion and garlic, also a sort of Italian sauce. I use my own organic veggies and make her tomato juice, green beans, pumpkin, beets, carrots, etc all without salt or sugar. I also make up fruits and even some pie fillings using fructose (this is "not" the high fructose corn syrup), which is fruit sugar and her doctor allows in her diet. I also include a jar of homemade noodles and often times a jar of the layered dry soup.
She talks about the couple of dozen jars of food I make her all year. She especially loves the fact that I told her that I think of her every time I plant something to can and how much fun it is.
Running short on time and money this weekend, I came up with a craft that I can make and give to many of the women in my life. It comes out beautifully and it is easy to do. Total cost for 32 gifts is $37, including wrapping. (I will probably give 2 to each person, so in my case, it is 16 gifts, but still, that's pretty good!)
So, for under $33, enough to make 32 ornaments.
These are easy, but require some time. The finished product is elegant and expensive looking.
To wrap mine, I bought white tissue paper for 97 cents at Wal Mart and gold curling ribbon for 97 cents. I will wrap them in the paper, tie with a ribbon, and place in Kraft style bags with Christmas motifs bought for cents each at Wal Mart. I will give each person two.
Once they are in the bags, I will punch the tops with a hole punch and thread some curling ribbon through. I will finish with gold-edge gift tags attached to the front (40 for 1.97 at Wal Mart) Total for wrapping: about $4
So, there it is. I hope this helps someone. These are an elegant, thoughtful gift.
Kateb from CT
This year my sister and I gathered old photos, family tree info and family stories and combined them into a book. That we had printed by online publisher LuLu. The book ran about $10 a book and is now an heirloom in our family.
One year I typed all the recipes I had used since my children were little, one recipe per page. I decorated each page to match the theme of the recipe with graphics and borders....
A nice Christmas gift is to make a pot of gold usually found at the end of rainbows! This is a good present for people who are difficult to buy for.
I have found that homemade gifts for Christmas or birthdays tend to not only be cheaper, but they are appreciated more because the recipient knows you took special time and effort to do something just for them. By Robin
For small gifts, hot chocolate mixes, coffee creamers, etc., take inexpensive felt sheets 8x11 and cut in half longways. You have two pieces 4x11. Sew or glue sides together (I sewed them), resulting in a bag that is 4x5 1/2.
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I am looking for homemade either food or gift ideas for our church board, pastor, and staff. I have 13 gifts to make and wanted to make some nice things that are reasonable.
Thank you so much.
Linda from PA
If you go to this website, you will find a HUGE choice of ideas: members.tripod.com/
I have a great idea...I sell Home Interiors & Gifts, with features from Better Homes and Gardens.
We have the BEST candles on the market and very affordable. Everybody likes candles and they are a hot item right now. If you are interested e-mail me at email@example.com Thank you.
I fill Mason jars with all the dry ingredients to make either cookies or soup. Put the recipe on a pretty card and tied it with a ribbon to the jar. it's cheap and people love it-they either have dinner or dessert at hand. Hope this helps.
Here's a small gift basket idea I used as teacher's gifts that were a big hit: I baked a dozen mini muffins and included 3 packages of hot cocoa (a box of 10 costs $1). The teacher's loved it because it was something they could enjoy and not another knick knack to dust. If you want a bigger gift, add a second flavor of muffins and add herbal tea, too.
What about things like homeade hot cocoa mix or bath salts, placed in decorative jars. You can find recipes almost anywhere. The ingredients are not very expensive, and easy to find.
If you're able to visit thrift shops or yard sales, this is something you can be working on all year, not just as it gets close to Christmas: Pick up beautiful old china dinner plates--you see a lot of nice single ones left over from sets that have long since bit the dust. Then when it gets closer to the Holidays, if you're a pretty good cookie maker--or if not like me, watch your local grocery store bakery for good deals on fancy cookies--fill each plate with a nice arrangement of fancy cookies, cover the whole thing with that clear wrapping paper (pull the paper up over the top of the plate and tie some pretty grosgrain ribbon around the excess wrapping paper sticking up over the plate). A friend of mine has given me a couple of these and I just loved it! Not only did I enjoy the yummy cookies, but now I have some really pretty plates that are fun to use for snack trays for fancy parties or even just to look at in my china hutch. (People are always asking me where I got such pretty plates!)
You can make a candleholder with candy canes. You need a red long tapered candle and about six or seven canes. Glue canes around candle with the crook part down. Tie an ribbon around and add some small xmas flower. Very cute and cheap. This makes great teachers gifts
http://www.Budget101.com has some great and inexpensive ideas for gifts.
I don't have the money to buy Christmas presents for my sisters and their children, so I go to Walmart or any store that sells crafts, I purchase crosstitch ornaments for like .97 cents, that way everyone gets a present they will always have to remember me by. The ornaments only take one hour to do and learning how to crossstitch is very easy, which you could find a website that has the instructions on it for free! My family loves them!
Make Peanut Brittle and put it in a jar. It always looks harder to make than it is. Make sure it's a dry day. And if you are feeling like making something fancier use hazelnuts or almonds in place of peanuts.
Take a look at this site.
several shops to look at especially gifts under $5 and $10 if on a budget like me.
I just found this site today and I'm hoping someone can help me. We are having really bad money problems this year and I don't know what to do for Christmas gifts for my children. I don't want them to wake up to nothing Christmas morning. I have a 9 year old boy, a 13 year old girl, a 18 year old boy, and a 19 year old boy. I want to make them something that they will enjoy and appreciate and something that will make them forget that we are having a hard time. Please help. Any ideas will be much appreciated. Thank you.
I want to make some homemade Christmas gifts. I don't know what to do and I don't want to spend money. I do not know how to knit or sew. What can I make? Thank you.
No matter what you make, if you want it to look like anything, you will have to spend some money. What are your abilities and what crafts do you like to do? A lot will also depend on the ages of the recipients.
You could use the ingredients you have in your kitchen to make gifts. For example, put the dry ingredients in a zip-lock bag for making a batch of cookies or a cake or bread, etc. Then write on a small card the wet ingredients that need to be added, and the instructions for mixing and baking it. Place the card in the bag.
Or you could bake cookies, place in zip-lock baggies and freeze until Christmas.
Another idea is to write down or type 5 to 10 of your very best recipes on a piece of paper or index cards, and give those as gifts.
These days most people understand that times are tough financially for some of us, I'm sure anything you give will be appreciated.
My sister has a large family encluding grandchildren and great grandchildren. She makes all the Christmas gifts and birthday gifts. She has a very small income. She quilts and knits. Every one in her family has lovely quilted place mats, lap quilts, pot holders, toaster covers, doll quilts, table toppers and door hanger decorations. She even makes tree ornaments from small quilt blocks. She knits the most wonderful dish cloths from cotton yarn. The little kids all have novelty pillowcases from kids story book prints. Her investment is the cloth, yarn and thread which is not a lot because she buys her supplies on sale and in bulk. She begins making her gifts in January and gets the birthdays out of the way first then starts on Christmas. She enjoys it and her family, me encluded, love the gifts.
I've just moved to my first home and money is a little tight. Could anyone give me tips how to make my Christmas gifts this year. I don't have a lot of money to spend, but I would like my presents to look nice.
My (fairly large!) family are very generous at Christmas and I want to give something that looks good, but costs the minimum. I am interested in quick, simple and easy ideas. Please help!
DIY gifts are the best gifts when you are trying to be frugal. Check out these great frugal homemade gift ideas.
These sweet gifts are made by placing a cake or cookie mix package into a linen towel bag. You can add tools and decorations, such as sprinkles, to round out the gift. This is a page about making pocket pack baking kits.
This gift idea consists of a blank book covered in seasonal paper. It is perfect for using as a journal to record holiday memories, recipes, and more. This is a page about making a Christmas book.
A wonderful way to keep in touch at the holidays is by sending personal audio greetings to family and friends. This is a page about sending audio Christmas greetings.
Dress up a bottle of bubble bath or spray bath foam like Santa. This makes a cute gift for the kids on your list. This is a page about making a Santa soap.
One inexpensive way to create special gifts for friends, family, and co-workers for Christmas is to utilize your computer. There are lots of ideas to pursue, such as bookmarks, stationary, coloring books, and more. This is a page about making Christmas gifts with your computer.
This is a page about giving a meal as a Christmas gift. A homemade meal made with love can be a meaningful holiday gift to many different people.
Some of the best Christmas gifts come from the kitchen. Baked goods, canned foods and snacks all make great homemade gifts. Find ideas for Christmas Gifts from Your Kitchen in this page.
Baked goods make great gifts for Christmas, birthdays and other special events. Edible gifts are not only delicious and come from the heart but can also be inexpensive.