I had a blast making gifts to give away this Christmas. It’s not often we have the time or the money to get gifts for all of our family and friends, but since I’ve been
unemployed “temporarily retired” for the past two months, I’ve had time on my hands to make homemade gifts!
Last year I took the Buy Handmade Pledge. Call me Ebenezer Scrooge, but I just don’t feel good, for many reasons, about the amount of “stuff” Christmas has come to generate commercially: mass-produced presents, plastic, all those cards and wrapping paper, etc. I much prefer to give and receive things handmade or homemade, and to support individual artists as often as I can. This year was my chance not only to buy a few handmade gifts, but to make several things myself. With only a few exceptions (suet + cages for feeding the birds, mason jars, and a calendar I had printed up using my own photos of my friend Bev’s garden), nearly all of the gifts we gave out this year were handmade!
Just about everyone got some sort of food – things I have canned, pickled, or otherwise preserved. Some of the gals got all natural (homemade!) body care products. My mom and sister got handmade (and fabulous) Hair Towels from an Etsy vendor.
Here’s some of what we gave:
Cayenne Pickled Green Beans
PA Dutch Pickled Eggs & Beets
(GREAT recipe for mustard HERE.)
Bergamot Bath Fizz, Rosemary Mint Sugar Scrub, Lemongrass Ginger Sugar Scrub, Lavender Hibiscus Bath Salts, and Lavender Rose Petal Bath Salts – ALL of which I learned how to make thanks to Stevie at Garden Therapy.
I had way too much fun making my own labels with some crafting paper I had on hand, scissors, and a glue stick!
Lavender-Hibiscus Bath Salts
No photos of the Sourdough Starter or the VERY hot Tomatillo Salsa, but we gave away plenty of those too.
It was so much fun making everything and being able to give so many things that I had made myself. This year it truly was better to give than to receive!