The holidays are all wrapped up… and I’m on a mission! I have to admit I was horrible at sticking to my budget for Christmas 2012… I didn’t use lists, I didn’t track my receipts, and I’m paying for it (well Kevin is, much to his chagrin) now. I resolve (yes, that’s right – a resolution from one who procrastinates and never, ever keeps a resolution. Maybe I’m just not so resolute in my resolving as I should be.) But, yes, I resolve to stick to a plan… think beyond commercial… and stay in a budget for 2013 gift-giving.
So where does a girl begin? I begin with plenty of time! No last minute hmm-hawing a week before family gatherings. Thus a brainstorm one night in January.
We buy gifts for the nephews and nieces. On my side of the fam, I like to include a book in every gift because everyone should love books as much as Auntie Lindsey. Everyone. Unfortunately, I’m realising as the kid’s are getting older, they don’t want books – they want toys, or money, or gift cards. Still, we also tuck a little something into the stocking and a book is just perfect for tucking.
Beyond that, when they’re small enough, I also try to create something personalized or homemade. Again, the older they get, the less this thrills them…. so we’ll really have to exercise our brains and if we can’t do homemade, maybe we can still think outside the box. This year (technically last year), I created a footprint canvas for my littlest newborn niece. It was a knock-off of this canvas her sister already had – customized to suit her purpley? purplish? nursery colour scheme. I designed it using digital papers and my own imagination in Adobe Illustrator and had it printed through the family business. I’ll post a picture when my sister-in-law snaps one for me.
For my second youngest niece, I created a chevron & dahlia Pinspired Etsy knockoff… which I feel kind of bad about because the lady on Etsy asks that her designs not be recreated, but I was already half done when I read that. Whoops!
Other than that, my homemade gifts were minimal – some cards, some gift card envelopes, some k-cup sleeves, a barn board established sign for my parents. I stole the barn board from my dad… ha!
We don’t do gifts for the siblings, but we do contribute to ginormous stockings if we desire. I ordered hand-stamped jewellery for the girls t- a WagJag/Groupon deal, but still purchased through a small local business, Rustic Metal Creations (Angus). The boys got some barbecue sauces and the like. Nothing exciting.
Sooo… this year (holidays 2013), I would really, really like to tweak my stocking stuffing routine and come up with some DIY ideas. I’m giving myself plenty of time and plenty of ideas to mull over, test, perfect, and tweak. Doesn’t hurt to come up with some Wisdom & Whimsy craft show ideas either!
Here is the beginning of my whirlwind plan to create – obviously with some edits as we go along!
- Homemade Jams, Jellies, or Spreads like this Carrot Cake Jam, Maple Caramel Sauce, and Autumn Apple Mint Jelly
- Spice Rubs, Soup Mix, or Seasoned Salt like this Hot & Sweet Spice Rub, Lemon Pepper Rosemary Salt, and Good-Luck Soup
- Clothespin Magnets, Note Cards, or Post It Note Pockets
- Bookmarks, Playdough, or Bathtub Crayons (for the kids!)
- Teacup Candles, Peppermint Soap, Lip Balm
- Hollow Books (for hidden stashes)