Gifting for the Season

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Handmade: Manufactured by hand; made with love

This year, not unlike other years, I wanted to go the handmade route. Thank to Jacki, I thought I'd get better organized about it this year, so I made a spreadsheet! This isn't to say that I have completely ruled out store-bought gifts, but will be enhanced. Here's the deal:

  • 1 Handmade Gift - This is something sewn, crocheted, or baked. In the past, I've given cookies, aprons, scarves, salsa, reusable bags
  • 1 Small Store Bought Gift - This is usually something needed and my loved ones have specifically requested like socks, pot holders, spatulas, specialty foods
  • 1 Donation to Charity - I have a monthly budget that goes specifically towards philanthropy/donations. I make note of these donations and jot down a reason why I chose the charity I selected. For Christmas, I send a note to the person who has inspired me to donate to the cause, how much was donated in their honor, and why I donated. Having my notes helps me remember what sparked the reason and well, it is just another way to pay it forward. It is nice to receive gifts, but I like to think that people's actions have inspired me to give on their behalf to a cause they believe in. For this reason I feel like the donation has that much more meaning. Some of the organizations I have supported:  MDA - Muscular Dystrophy, CF - Cystic Fibrosis, American Heart Association, Promise House - Runaway Teens, Susan G. Komen, American Cancer Society, Texas Tech University, Alzheimer's Association, and HIV AIDS Alliance. Additionally, we adopt one angel from the angel tree and shop for their gifts on Black Friday.                                          
With that said, would you like a teaser of some of the handmade goodness? The theme this year (last year was aprons) is comfy fleece!
Also, this is the 1 crocheted items I have successfully completed. It is a scarf for Brother. He already knows. I had to measure it on him to make sure it was long enough. I really like the way it turned out! If crocheting didn't take me forever, I would totally make a few more of these!
Yeah, I tried to start this project too, but haven't bee very successful. This is what I want to do, but I have no idea what that shorthand is trying to tell me. Can anyone clue me in? I think these scrubbies are top notch and I know I can make them, I just need a bit of guidance.

Also, I wanted to can crab macaroni and cheese, but then I realized that I don't have a pressure cooker and seeing as how I've never canned anything in my life, I'm better off sticking to baking a dessert in a jar and handing that out as a gift. I need to run to Paper Source to pick up some labels and this weekend, it's gonna be a baking dream up in our home, hopefully. Oh, and hopefully Don will whip up some of his awesome salsa. We already have the jars and the equipment, we just need to do it!

Now it is your turn, what do you do? Do you hand make anything? Do you give gifts? Do you donate in someone's honor?


Michelle said...

I had lofty goals for sewing gifts this year (dolls for kids) aprons for moms, but I'm staying to realize how unrealistic that has become. :(

Oh, I can totally hello you with that crochet pattern though. We should do a craft night next week!

Kristen, pajama mama said...

you know how i feel about handmade gifts-they're the best! my rule i try to follow for my kids gifts is:

something to wear,
something they need,
something they want,
something to read.

i think there's a victorian phrase that's better, but i like the idea of a few small gifts...

great Christmas photos by the way!

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