I Know it's Early...I'm a Planner!

Even though it's our son's first Christmas this year, I am really starting to think about having a pared down Christmas - homemade gifts, family gifts, donating to charity in someones name are a few thoughts I've had.

So far, some ideas I've come up with:

Family Night Package: My brother and sister-in-law have family night every Friday. I thought it might be fun to do a 'movie night package' for some of the families we exchange gifts with. I found a great deal on cozy quilted throws, so I bought several. With the throw, I'll add a kid friendly movie, a big popcorn bowl, a few bags of microwave popcorn and some candy.

Fleece Blankets: My mom showed me how to make double layer fleece blankets (no-sew) about five years ago. That year I made my nieces and nephews cozy blankets and they all loved them. Now they've all grown quite a bit (and some weren't even born at the time) so I figure it's time to upgrade.

Treat Basket: I did these last year and thought it turned out well - Union Square Cafe Bar Nuts (these are freakin' fabulous), white chocolate peppermint bark, homemade hot chocolate mix, and a bag of coffee beans from that place where I work. I may try homemade almond roca this year. But I would have to use a candy thermometer and that frightens me...stay tuned.

I'm still trying to plot this all out. The plan is to not necessarily spend a lot, but put some thought and effort into gifts.

Anybody have any cheap and cheerfuls they want to add to the mix?


megant599 said...

I made almond roca last year and isn't as hard as it sounds...but it's not nearly as good as the real thing. My mom always makes homemade salami...random I know, but easier than you'd think:) Love the fam night idea. I just used some plastic popcorn "bags" (hard plastic, look like a red-striped carton) for popcorn at home the other night and it made it so special. we're doing only one gift per person plus something homemade. We all need to trim down on the consumerism. I did cookie/candy tins and was very proud of myself last year. Thinking cookie party this year so I don't have to do so much of the work! I'll let you know if I come up with some more ideas...so fun!

Heather D said...

My aunt has a good almond roca recipe...I may hit her up if I am feeling ambitious and want 2nd degree burns.
That reminds me, my dad calls almond roca kitty surprise. Charming. I think if I make it, I'll make it flat like a brittle, not in poo shaped pellets...

Andrea said...

Kitty surprise! Love it. Almond Roca reminds me of my grandparents. They used to always have it around, the pink cans... ahh, memories. I remember when they gave my cousin a half eaten can for graduation ;) I think chocolate peanut butter balls are the best gift ever and I wish I could eat them! My SIL gave me a jar of apple pie filling last year and that was good... no idea how to make it though.

I'm planning to sew gifts for my girls and Arthur (he insisted though I told him he wouldn't really like a sewn gift...) Pictures of my kids are always good gifts for the grandparents. They seem to like them anyway.

Heather said...

I make homemade gifts too. Especially for Ry's family since they have everything and no one is crafty at all. I am with Megan and do like consumerism... Any who one of the things my sisters and I have started doing for my parents every year is to make a scrapbook for them. They love it since we all live far away. We each take 5 or so pages and it is cute because the grandkids do some pages. It is unique and something that they can keep forever. My parents don't need anything either so they love it. Love baking for people too that is fun although I have never made almond roca. I am not a fan and I always make things I like too ;) Have to do a taste test ;)