Tuesday, December 10, 2013

*Homemade* Christmas Gift Ideas

 After posting all of the wonderful businesses and products that my friends are selling for Christmas gifts, I decided to also include a post on homemade gifts, because I seem to fancy them. Most of these I have made before and gifted, so it's safe to share them with you now. Let me know what you think or if you try any of them! (P.S. I'm not super crafty, so they're pretty simple).

Sugar Scrub- Sugar scrubs are so easy, inexpensive, and delightful! The last time I honestly made some was at my baby shower... but I plan on making some this holiday season! If you already have an arsenal of essential oils, it's even easier. All you need are mason jars, sugar, oil, essential oils, and a little decoration! Doesn't Peppermint Sugar Scrub sound divine!?

Home-made Calendar- I made one of these for myself and gifted one a few years ago, and i seem to have misplaced it... All you have to do is gather a bunch of (free) paint chips from Home Depot or Lowe's, cut and position in the frame size of your choice, and put it BEHIND the glass so you can use the glass as dry-erase and change each month. GENIUS! You can find more directions for this exact picture here.

Picture Coasters- These are my favorite. So much that I may have overdone it last year with them, But they're so easy and cheap! Just buy 4 white tiles from Home Depot or Lowe's ( .14 each), and print off some pictures of the loved one that you are gifting to. Cut the picture to size, Mod Podge onto the tile, Mod Podge over the picture, and finish off my spraying with CLEAR spray paint a few times to seal. Then tie with a pretty bow! These are the ones I made for my sister last year.
(Note: You can also use scrapbook paper and I have *heard* fabric works too! And save money by making your own Mod Podge by mixing 1/2 Elmer's glue and 1/2 water in a mason jar and SHAKE!)

Wool Dryer Balls- I just made these for the first time. They are a little time consuming and can make your hand a little achy, but I think they're fun and a thoughtful, useful gift! This is a picture of the ones I made, but you can follow this link for directions!

Baked Goods- Who doesn't love a jar of cookie mixings, a fresh loaf of Amish bread, or some homemade candy? I don't have a link for this, as I am still searching for the perfect recipes, although I have some ideas... Simply scour Pinterest or the internet to find a favorite recipe and make it happen! Don't forget to wrap it up nice and pretty!

Homemade Vanilla Extract- My newest adventure. Vanilla extract is made from Vanilla Beans and vodka (or rum or whiskey). I also don't have a link for this one, as there are SO many options for making this. Check out Pinterest for a TON of ideas and recipes- I can't share mine yet because they are not finished! I'll let you know how they turned out soon! (Note: This gift takes 2-3 months before ready. You can make the little bottles and add a "ready by" date for the recipient).

(Not my picture!)
 Applesauce-Cinnamon Ornaments- I just LOVE these! Not only do they smell good and make a great gift, but they are easy, fast, and the kids can help you make them! I had my mommy friends over last week to make some- and there was enough dough left for me to make a dozen!

 We used 1 cup of applesauce, 1 1/4 cup cinnamon, and mix with hands. You want the dough to be moist, but not wet. Roll out in between wax paper to 1/4in thick, and cut with cookie cutters into desired shapes. Use a straw to poke holes for hanging (press into dough and twist). Bake at 200 degrees for 2 hours- I actually did a little longer. Or you can let them sit on the counter for 3-4 days to harden. Add ribbon, writing, glitter, whatever your heart desires! I have given these as small gifts, but I know others who has used them as gift tags! So cute!

Have a Merry DIY Christmas!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Christmas Gift Ideas

Hi All! It's Christmastime! I know, I'm a little late- hopefully not too late to get some of these deals. Hopefully this can get your mind turning to get some gifts taken care of! So, to begin a couple posts about Christmas ideas, here are some friends of mine that have their own little businesses that provide neat gifts for the women in your life. Maybe you can find some inspiration or a few gifts here!

1. Jamberry Nails
Jamberry nails are nail wraps that come in unique designs, colors, and patterns. Unlike nail polish, they last up to 2 weeks on fingernails! For more information, visit this link:

2. Origami Owl
Personalized jewelry, anyone? My mom has one of these and LOVES it. Contact one of the ladies below to place an order.

3. Marvelous Couture

All  sorts of jewelry and accessories on this Etsy site! Check it out for a unique and beautiful gift for your loved one.

4. DesignsByRade

Adorable handmade fabric items! Aprons, bags, flowers... a must see. 

5. ReisPeices

 Of course, I HAD to include the fabric budgeting wallet that I love... She also has makeup bags, lunch bags, mens wallets, accessories, etc.

6. Honi Kine

A personal favorite... these are the teething necklaces that my friend Sharon so carefully crafts.