Christmas cookingartreadelfshophome
mouse with giftsGifts you Can Make at Home
Some where in time, our culture changed. At one time a gift represented our feelings for a person. Now its more a chore: shop, wrap, give, shop, wrap, give....
Another thing that had changed, however appears to correcting itself is the thought that homemade gifts were just a cheap way to do gifts, another way to save money. While it is true that homemade gifts may be less expensive, they offer much more than any store bought gifts. It tells a person that they are worth your time and thought.

With our busy schedules, many of the traditional gifts may not be feasible to make, so here are some nice ones that don't require a lot of time, special tools, money, or skills, just a few items and some of that oh so valuable time.

You may also wish to check the Gifts You Can Make From the Kitchen

Quick, easy, and inexpensive (Many of the instructions were located on other pages of this site, so rather than list them twice, I have simply linked to them.)

Hand rolled bees wax candles are very popular. The total time is only minutes with a cost of less than $5 for  a nice pair

Bath soaps and salts. Another popular gift . Total time can be measured in minutes. Total cost for several gifts is less than $10.

Potpourri is always appreciated. The cost can be as low as a couple of dollars to $10 depending on how much and how fancy you wish to get.

Kitchen Oils and Vinegars are expensive in the stores, but are a low cost gift. The bottle will be the most expensive part.

Munches - Almost everyone loves a good snack. If the person is on a diet, keep it healthy with only a couple of sweets. This way they can enjoy without over indulging.

For those special people on you list make them a basket of goodies.
Second hand stores normally have a large supply of baskets, also hobby shops carry them.
If the basket you pick, is in need of dressing up: spray paint it (red, green, metallic gold), tack on a little christmas ribbon, line the bottom with either green Easter grass, or colored shredded paper.
When basket is filled, you may wish to seal in cello. Cellophane is sold on roles like wrapping paper and can be found in most larger arts and crafts stores (cost less than $3). Open role, pull off enough to reach several inches above the basket, place basket on cello, pull roll to top of basket, cut cello. Bunch and twist cello at top, you may wish to run a piece of scotch tape around twist to hold it. Tie a ribbon around twist using a Christmas ornament for a bow. If the basket is very large, after cutting cello, measure off another piece of the same size, lay it crosswise " +", pull all corners to top of basket and twist.

Bath basket - several soaps, some bath salts, and a matching bee wax candle

Kitchen basket - a mixture of different oils and vinagars, toss in a set of candles for the table.

The big family - make up several different items to much on, and a special gingerbread cookie for each family member with their name one it.

Household basket - a little bit of everything, bath items for the females, candles, potpourri, and fire starters (if they have a fireplace) for the house, munches for the guys.

For the feathered and furred friends:
I have yet to see an animal check labels or brand names, they truly accept a gift at face value. It it tastes good or is fun to play with, they are happy.

Eatable Treats

Eatable Treats

A fun toy is to grab one of those mismatched socks you have, pour about a 1/8 cup of catnip in to toe. Tie in a knot.

Go fish - A toy fishing pole with a pompom or little stuffed mouse will bring many hours of fun. Dangle the bate and reel in the cat.

Scratching post is another easy one. Run down to the local hardware store, find a piece of wood that fits your fancy. Posts can be anything from a two by four board to something fancy, depending on desire. Carpet to cover it is easy to find, most carpet stores have samples they will sell for a dollar or two. If your post is larger than a sample piece will cover, ask a  carpet installer to save you a scrap off one of their jobs. This may take longer, but the price is right.
Once you have your post and carpet, glue carpet onto post, use a staple gun on edge.

A special bed, cats much like the dogs will many times enjoy laying on their owner's clothing. The only thing is that sometimes cats don't wait until we are out of them before they start Kneading. OUCH! Find an old robe (or other clothing) wear it around for a few hours, than cut out a couple of square pieces and sew into a large pillow. You may even with to stuff with other old clothes. Yes I know it sounds bad, but after all who is the gift for? Also he/she won't mind if you keep it out of site of human guests like in the corner of the bedroom.

Eatable Treats

Not homemade but much loved....While at the grocery store, ask the butcher for a nice big bone. In the old days they gave them away, now the cost is about 50 cents a pound.