Friday, December 11, 2009

Buy Gifts or DIY?

It's exactly 14 days before christmas. I've done my christmas shopping already, I just need to buy few more gifts to complete my list. With regards to gifts, would you consider buying one or a diy? So buying vs homemade? I would say buy! hahhaha kidding! Well, I'm not really a DIY kind of girl, not because I'm not crafty enough, because truth be told I am a little crafty. But, it's just that I really do not have the patience. On the contrary, I'd say homemade gifts will always be the winner, it would always top my list. If I receive something homemade, fancy or not, I'll keep them. Last year, I gave away 3 kinds of cookies. I got the recipe from Chipits and I packed them inside dollar store plastic containers, and wrapped them in a cellophane, put ribbons, and they were good to go. Everybody loved them. Well, it was good not only because I followed the recipe well, but I made it with more than a cupful of love. This year I'm planning to give away leche flan to people close to my heart. I would like to share some homemade gift ideas that I received from busymomtips. You can get an idea or two from this so have fun and be creative!


1. Edible Treats: Package homemade cookies, peppermint bark, or sugared pecans in old-fashioned tins that can be found at thrift shops and garage sales.

2.  Painted Pots: Take a standard, inexpensive clay pot and paint in a solid color. Let it dry completely and then decorate it with your own design. Personalize it by adding the recipient’s name. Finally, plant some herbs or a small plant in the pot for an extra special touch.

3. Printable Coupons: Design (or use an online template) and print out coupons to be used as stocking stuffers or stapled into a little booklet as a gift. A few suggestions for the coupons are: Good for One Hug (or Kiss); Good for One Back Rub; Redeem for a Car Wash; Take the Night Off; Have Breakfast in Bed. Be creative!

4. Printable Calendars: Use one of the many available calendar templates or software programs to personalize a calendar for a loved one by adding pictures and special dates

5. Handprint Canvas Bag: Have the kids stamp a plain, light-colored canvas bag with their handprints. Simply paint their hands with fabric paint and then press them on the bag. You can paint on stems, leaves, or other designs or lettering (such as the kids’ names) with fabric paint or a fabric marker. Note: may take a day or two to dry so give yourself plenty of time to finish this project.

6. Message Board: Make a colorful message board by wrapping a piece of fabric around a rectangular piece of styrofoam and glueing the ends to the back. Then create a grid by wrapping strips of ribbon around the board so that pictures and messages can be easily tucked behind the ribbon.

7.  Button Picture Frame: Paint a plain wooden picture frame (remove glass first) and let dry. Glue a variety of old buttons to the frame to create an unusual and interesting frame for family pictures.

8. Marbleized Christmas Ornaments: Squirt 2-3 different colors of acrylic paint inside of a clear glass ornament, and gently swirl the paint around. Let paint dry completely before adding the topper and tying it with a ribbon.

9. Family Cookbook: Ask all of the family members to contribute some of their favorite recipes to be typed up, printed out, and copied into a cookbook for all of the family to enjoy. You can have the cookbooks professionally bound by a printer such as Kinko’s, or put inside of a report cover or notebook with your own cover design or picture.

10. Garden Stepping Stones: Decorate plain concrete stepping stones by painting your own design with acrylic paints or using the kids’ hand or feet prints. Let dry completely before applying 1-2 coats of acrylic sealer.

I would like to add a sweet treat recipe book on digital scrapbook layouts. If you're not a photoshop junkie, not a problem. They came up with a program called Smilebox. It's a  downloadable program wherein you could create scrapbook layouts and play with your pictures. It's wayyy better than Scrapbookflair. I love photoshop and I'm comfortable using them but for some people who are not patient with photoshop, this is your best bet.

Let's all be creative this christmas!