There's a lot of pressure during the holiday season to spend. Sometimes this pressure to spend overshadows the underlying intention to give.
In these tough economic times, with many out of work and a bleak economic outlook, here's some ideas on how you can still give without always having to spend an arm and a leg.
It really is the thought that counts, although retail stores would have you think otherwise. Adding a personal touch is a great way to dress up simple gifts and infuse them with heart!
1. Choose a book you know they'll love. (Old-fashioned ink-on-paper books are great.) Make a bookmark with ribbon and stock paper and add your own message to it. Wrap it in newspaper, old maps, or sheet music.
2. Pair a small bottle of lavender oil (or tea tree, eucalyptus, or peppermint oil) with a few sticks of incense and a favorite rock or shell. Tie with twine or ribbon.
3. Grab a few extra bottles of your favorite (inexpensive) wine and include a handwritten toast with a fresh flower or two attached.
4. Recycle glass apple sauce jars, jelly jars, and peanut butter jars. Fill them with homemade treats, like granola, or craft kits you create yourself. Include colored pencils, stamps, stickers, ribbon, and scissors. Choose a theme for the jar, like Muscle Relief Kit, and fill it with everything they need for a relaxing soak: Epsom salt, dried lavender or rose petals, tealights, a book of matches, and a small container of bubbles.
5. Create a homemade Vision Board Kit. Vision boards are a wonderfully inspiring way to turns goals into realities. Pick up a large piece of cardboard or poster board, five or six magazines (to cut pictures out of), markers, paper scraps, pens, some glue, and anything else your creative heart desires. Drop it all into a large reusable grocery bag and make a handmade label, "Vision Board Kit." Make two or three for your friends and then create them all together!
7. Make a homemade fruit basket with fresh citrus from your local farmer's market this Sunday and arrange in an old wood crate or box. Decorate with some fresh herbs like Rosemary or Thyme.
What are your favorite homemade gifts? Share your ideas in the comments below!
Photo credit: Theresa Thompson
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