Sunday, November 23, 2008

# christmas homemade

Homemade for the Holidays!

You heard right, I said HOMEMADE for the holidays. Because the economy downright sucks right now, and things are bad for everyone and I just can't see myself spending a crazy amount of money for a few hours of opening tons of presents that get forgotten within a few days and some never even opened.

So I am pledging to buy two gifts and make the rest. Now you may be wondering if I'm off my rocker or just exactly how I plan on achieving that, it's simple, I'm going for things that I know my family loves, things that I know they'll use or need, things that they can't just use one time and be done with.

Here's my plan, to begin with I'm going by the 4 rules of gift giving for Christmas:

Something to Read
Something they Need
Something they Want
Something to Wear

Then I'm going to use what I like the most, turn my hobbies into gift making machines. Let me show you what I made for Jasmine yesterday, in 3 hours, I knitted the scarf and it's finished and hidden for Christmas.

Each of the kids is getting a scarf, Jasmine is done and I've already started Nicholas. I also am making each of them a crayon roll, they both love coloring and drawing so this is perfect.

I've spent some time looking through Sew, Mama, Sew's list and she has some amazing ideas, so I'm sure I'll find plenty of stuff there. From the kitchen, they're also getting the Homemade Caramels that I make every year, these will also be used as part of the gifts for the teachers, along with some other cute stuff.

I'm also making cookies for Curt and the kids, Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter, Shortbread etc.

Jasmine is getting a Tote Bag and Apron too, she's been begging for these for so long, so now is the time.

That's just an idea of some of the homemade gifts. For Curt it's harder because he's a man and I doubt he'll want to walk around with a tote bag, or a pretty dish cloth LOL
One of the things that I'm making which I did last year and was a huge hit, was a gift basket for him. I got a small basket at the dollar store and threw in two movies that he likes, some beef jerky and other snacks and movie tickets. He loved it.

But I still need ideas for me out, those of you going Homemade this year, what do you give your husbands?

Then of course, I have the Advent Calendar to finish and I want to make some Elf Clogs as ornaments, they're so easy and so quick to make and how adorable?

So who else is going to take the pledge with me? Are you ready to step up and try your best to go homemade instead of bought? As the weeks go by, I'll be posting more and more about the gifts I'm making as well as links that can give you some great ideas to use yourself.

I'm off to get into the knitting and sewing....hope you have a wonderful Sunday.


  1. That scarf is so cute- she'll love it!

  2. One of the things I made for all the men one year was a BBQ apron - in butcher stripes with something crazy like BBQ Chief appliqued on the front, with a huge bottle of home made marinade, and that was a great hit. The trouble is that that was SA and summer! Give me a day or 2 and I will let you know what else I come up with!

  3. Sandra, if you email me, I can send you some ideas!

  4. I've done gift baskets for my husband also. He's Canadian and has cravings for his favorite canadian candy bar (Coffee Crisp) so I order them in bulk and hide them for little pick me up gifts during the year. I've also done special "coupon books" for hubby and I to enjoy when we get some time alone. I try to listen to the little things he says he might like to have or need like new shoe laces, super glue, and a pack of batteries. All things men seem to never have and always need. He says he spends nights wondering what will be in his basket. He's excited about them because they're all useable gifts.

  5. Oh what a good idea for your husband. I think my husband would love this especially the jerky. I think the crayon roll-up is cute. I don't know how to sew but I've wanted to learn ever since my granddaughter was born. But, I have to slow down and finish what I've started. thanx for the great ideas...Kae

  6. How about personalized business cards that he can give to co-workers who transfer or contractors that may want to get in touch with him? There are great, free templates at and he can carry a few in his wallet - how many men walk around with a notebook and pen to write down details like e-mail addresses and phone numbers?

  7. Anonymous3:55 PM

    I give you a high 5 for deciding to make most of the gifts.
    Thanks for the links too.. I bookmarked a couple of them to check out later.

  8. Yeah for you for making gifts. The scarf is really cute. I'll be interested to find out what you decide for Curt. I think Men are always harder.

  9. I'm with you. All of mine are (and have been for a few years now) homemade or handmade by either me or local artisans.

  10. Anonymous5:09 PM

    I am doing a lot of homemade gifts, too!! I have already bought a bunch of fleece to make: a Cars tied blanket for my toddler, 3 hooded pullovers (49ers, Steelers, Raiders) 2 Steelers scarves, 1 49er scarf and 1 Raiders scarf. And I already made and embroidered denim purse for one daughter, and need to make a camo or black purse for my older daughter.

    And think of something for my parents!! Last year I made what every Grandma needs, an apron with all the kids handprints in fabric paint.

    I was reading this post and my 8 year old daughter walked by when I was looking at the crayon rollup, and she said, "I want one!!" So I think I will make one for her, too!! Why am I still on the computer?? I need to get busy!! =)

  11. Both of the gifts you showed here are very cute, Sandra. I wish I could say I would stick to your plan...but I know that I won't. However, you have inspired me to do MORE homemade...I like your ideas and I like your 4 rules! I read them to my hubby and he liked it too.

    I was thinkiing that a tied quilt/ blanket makes a great man's gift. Sometimes you can find their favorite sports team in fuzzy fabric to make one...or if they like to hunt...camoflauge..or just the colors of their favorite team. And then I have a recipe (and read one recently on a blog) of a big recipe for making your own hot chocolate. I think buying a special mug (inexpensively of course) and doing the hot chocolate in a big jar would be good for a man's gift..or to add in a basket with a movie.

    I'm going to check out your link. Thanks so much and if you get more ideas from folks...I'd love to hear them...maybe you could share?

    Thanks, Sandra! Have a great week!

  12. This is a nice idea.


  13. Christmas is so hard for me! When I was a child there were so many of us that we only received 1 present. It was still fun and exciting. I only have 2 children and until the past 2 years I was paid very well so anything they wanted for Christmas they pretty much received. I know that I spoiled them and set unrealistic expectations, but now it makes Christmas hard. Especially since they are teenagers and like electronics! I really am at a loss as to what to buy them this year because money is not a commodity! Do you have any ideas for a 15 & 17 year old?

  14. Anonymous10:02 AM

    What about making Curt a bathrobe? You could stuff the pockets with a new shaver, shave gel, and some new knitted wash clothes. Or make a basket out of it. I think I may have just figured out my own husbands gift :) Good luck!!

    jilldaugherty03 at yahoo dot com

  15. My husband loves crafted/personally made stuff too. He likes new pictures of the kids for his wallet (he's a farmer so doesn't have a desk per sae), framed photos from our travels for our walls or special homemade chocolates and truffles. One year he got a goose down quilt that's as light as a feather and it's his 'watching TV' blanket. I love your ideas!! I'm making crayon rolls for our granddaughters and bags or aprons for the girls. I think the guys and grandkids are getting flannel pyjamas - I have the fabric washed and the pattern laid out right now. Enjoy your creating!!!!

  16. I've already taken the Homemade/Handmade pledge for Christmas gifts. I'm doing the majority myself, and what I don't make myself, I am purchasing from other online artisans at and

    Pictures and info will be on my blog along the way throughout December.

  17. Anonymous6:57 PM

    Here's something i ran into today...

  18. Hi, I'm also making homemade xmas. I'm currently working on making two John Deere blankets for my little boy. I just stole a couple of ideas from your website. Thanks.

  19. Anonymous10:00 AM

    Hi Sandra,
    I made some of our gifts too. I made tea towels and aprons.I just look the new hair do. You are so beautiful dear friend. Have a very Happy Thanksgiving.

  20. Wonderful gifts! We're focusing on a homemade Christmas this year too. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  21. I am addicted to Allsorts! The advent calendar and elf shoes are so cute! I am making them too!


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