The holiday season, regardless of which one of the many holidays you celebrate, can be a stressful (and costly!) time of the year. For some, there is the cost of travel, for others it’s the stress and cost of hosting the holidays at their home. And while everyone around you will say “The holiday’s aren’t about gifts”, it doesn’t change the fact that we want to exchange gifts with those we love and appreciate.
And you can always count on SOMETHING to break/go wrong around the Holidays, to dip into what little cash you have for gifts (last year was recovering from an astronomical oil bill of 2 years and a lot of sickness/surgeries; this year our dryer died which with 2 kids and a baby on the way, a replacement was necessary).
So what do you do when the ole cash flow is running low, but you still want to give out meaningful gifts, something that says “Hey, I love and appreciate you”? This is when I turn to my favorite gift, the homemade gift.
I’ve heard the excuses: But I’m not crafty; I want to give them something they’ll use/love; home made gifts are just as expensive. Well, I’ve searched the net for some of the best, most loved, most useful gifts that you can make for all the people in your lives, without breaking the bank (even better, keeping each gift under a $10 budget!). Take a look at this guide for some fantastic ideas for those special people in your lives.
The Reader/Writer: I am a rabid reader as well as writer. My husband is always saying that I don’t need more books but the fact is, I can always use more books! The problem is, if your reader/writer fan is like me, they are always reading several books at once and/or always marking pages that speak to them. This is also a great gift for your students! You can create your own bookmarks that are unique and beautiful (and even better, actually stay on the page vs standard book marks that can sometimes slip out) just by using paperclips and buttons. Find unique buttons in any sewing/craft aisle/store and pair them with colorful paperclips from the local office section!
The Fashionista: You know what’s always in? Scarves. Even better? Infinity scarves. But Jamie, I don’t know how to crochet or knit! You don’t need to! Make a beautiful, unique infinity scarf using nothing but yarn and your arm! Ok, but that’ll take forever! I’m sure you can find 30 mins out of your day to make something special for that fashionista in your life! Follow this simple guide to not only learn how to arm knit but also to create your own infinity scarf! PS: Yarn is super cheap. Typically under 5.00 per skein and that’s on the more fancy stuff. Also, Hobby Lobby always has a 40% off coupon in their app!
The Fitness Junky: I’ve dabbled in fitness with my running, and the one thing I’ve noticed that is pretty standard across the board, is that people who are working on improving their health/lives/etc, love to track their progress. This little book is a DIY fitness scrap book which starts off with the basic “Smash journal” (you can purchase one of these for under 10.00 at all sorts of places from Bull Moose, to Hobby Lobby, to Walmart – Keep in mind that Bull Moose always has books marked down 35% and Hobby Lobby always has a 40% off coupon in their app). From there, you can print some small calendar sheets HERE or search Pinterest or google images for some 100 day challenges. Spark up a conversation with your fit friend and find out what they like to do and work on and make different sections for recipes, arm day, leg day, you name it! Or just make sections, leave the rest blank so they can customize it for their own personal fitness ideas.
The Techie: Techies sure do love their gadgets. Not only do they love their gadgets but they also love cases that protect their gadgets. When I got my kindle, I never felt the need to get a bulkie protective case, because I knew it wasn’t something that I had to worry about dropping or shattering the glass, however, I was worried about the screen getting scratched when I put it in my purse. I didn’t need a $20 or $50 case. What I needed was something minimal and, of course, stylish. And that’s when I headed over to pinterest and found this pattern for a DIY leather Ipad case! But, didn’t I just say I had a kindle? Easy fix, just measure (or find the measurements on line) for the gadget you are looking to make the case for and adjust the pattern! Took less than an hour and the most expensive piece was the leather (Again – Hobby lobby app 40% off!). Use leather, fabric, suede, whatever you want!
The Overworked Parent: Sometimes we just need to take the time to pamper ourselves. But who has the time to plan that? Help that overworked parent, friend, loved one relax with some Homemade Lemon Scrub. The best thing about this recipe is that you can make several gifts from one batch! Put it in some mason jars (you can get 12 for under 10.00 at most of your local Walmarts or Targets), tie it off with a pretty bow, and BAM! These also make great office gifts.
The Beloved Grandparent: If there is one thing I know about grandparents, it that they love getting homemade gifts from their grandchildren! That’s why a Brag Board is one of my favorite gifts to give! They can show off these by putting them on their counter, or desk at work. These gifts are always from the heart and capture their grandchildren in a moment in time. This is also great, because it’s a homemade gift that you can get your kids involved in! Here is another tutorial I’ve used in the past as well as a kit you can purchase (slightly more than 10.00).
The Pet-Lover: Almost everyone knows someone with Fur-babies, and they just love anything that is fur-baby related! Here’s a fun, and inexpensive idea to create a unique silhouette of their fur-baby. Cost? You can pick up a 8 by 11 frame at The Dollar Store, Walmart, or The Christmas Tree shops for under 4.00. Drop by and get either some scrap book pages (typically under 2.00) or just grab a pack of construction paper. Perfect for putting on the wall, end table, or even their desk at work!
The Foodie: One of my favorite gifts I would get around the holidays was home made special treats. My Aunt Jo would send buckeye balls in a tin while my Aunt Cheryl (on more than one occasion) made me my favorite No-Bake Cookies packed in an oval tin. Special treats just for you (well, that you could share). Try making these No-Bake Oreo Truffles. Make a batch and buy a christmas tin (check The Dollar Store, Christmas Tree Shops, Walmart and/or Target for inexpensive tins). A perfectly yummy gift! Need more food related ideas? Check out this site: 35 DIY Foodie Gifts You Can Make for Under 10.
Leave a comment to let me know how they work out or if there are any homemade items you want to share!