I know it seems a bit hard to get into the mood for Christmas when it isn't even Halloween yet. But Christmas does have a way of sneaking up on you quickly, especially when you are busy with work and the kids. I find that it eases the stress and I am able to enjoy the holiday season so much more if I am prepared. My kids love making gifts for people and it can be less of a burden on the budget as well. We like to make gifts for family, friends and teachers that can quickly add up to a lot of gifts and money.
I have recently discovered that Pinterest is a great place to find crafty ideas. My latest find was Prudent Baby's wristlet for keys, I can not wait to make these! Very economical, fun and you can decorate them according to what each person likes. I need one of these bad, I lose my keys all the time. These are perfect for hanging on a door knob, this way I will always have them in sight, no more frantic searching. When I"m shopping they can hang on my wrist so they are not lost in my bag.
We have found lots of great ideas on www.familyfun.com, and of course just googling a specific idea is always helpful.
For teachers and those with young kids we love to make home made play dough, (http://www.ladiesholiday.com/2012/08/best-playdough-ever.html) this is always a hit. We have made bird seed wreaths using un flavored gelatin, bird seed and mini bunt pans for molds. Or pine cone feeders using lard and bird seed, as the peanut butter can be harmful to birds, it gets stuck in their beak and breathing holes. Cinnamon ornaments smell great and are a classic representation of the holidays.
The kids can draw or take great pictures that you can get inexpensive frames for. We bake gingerbread men and decorate them with icing and candy. We make chocolate covered spoons and wrap them in colored cellophane and and tie them with pretty ribbon. How about jars filled with brownie or cookie mix that people can make later after all the holiday treats are gone. My kids take a sewing class and they are planning on sewing some special things like pillows, pillowcases or bags for gifts.
We have found that people look forward to our gift bags of home made goodies. These are a great way to have fun with your kids while getting your holiday gift list under control. This is way more fun than going to the mall any day. Just put on some seasonal music and get into the spirit.
If you have any great home made gift ideas PLEASE share!