Making an Easy Homemade Christmas Present
How to have a homemade Christmas present extravaganza
My kids aren't thrilled when they hear the phrase homemade Christmas present. Or at least, they weren't the first time. Every year they hope we'll cave and act like a 'normal' family, buying them video games and a ton of other junk they won't use.
But my family is all about the homemade Christmas present, and secretly, I think the kids enjoy it as much as we do. If you've ever considered going the homemade route, here are some tips to guide your path.
Organizing the homemade Christmas present extravaganza
Here are the steps to follow if you want your family to go homemade.
1. Decide if everyone's making for everyone.
Depending on the size of your family, the fun answer is 'yes, of course!' However, if you have a very large family, or you're short on time, you may want to draw names or have secret santas instead.
2. Decide if you're having a strict homemade Christmas.
I know many families that supplement their homemade Christmas present with something storebought 'for the children.' In my case, I really want the kids to learn about avoiding the whole commercial mindtrap, so we only exchange homemade gifts. Depending on your family, though, you may decide to also get a few small gifts from the store as well.
3. Have everyone make a list.
Oh well all know this one. I want, I want, I want! But instead we're going to make a slightly different list this year. Instead of listing items you want, have each person in your family list their favorite:
A list like that goes a long way to inspiring the perfect homemade Christmas present. Post the lists on the fridge so everyone can consult them as Christmas approaches.
4. Decide on a price limit.
Even a homemade Christmas present comes with a price tag for materials and supplies. Decide how much each person should spend on those things before you get crafting.
5. Encourage fun and secrecy.
Half the fun of homemade Christmas gifts comes in the secret rush to finish without anyone seeing. Help younger kids and older siblings alike, and encourage the fun.
If anyone seems stuck for ideas, here are some great suggestions.
For young children:
-Homemade toys and stuffed animals
-A hand drawn coloring book
-A picture book made by siblings on the computer
-Homemade candy or cookies just for them
-A CD of their favorite music (or alternatively, load up their MP3 player)
-Get out of chores free coupons
-Craft kits (supplies might cost a bit, but the real gift is you promising to teach them to knit, paint, etc.)
-Photo collage of family memories
To adults from kids:
-Office supplies, such as pen holders and the like
-Knit or sewn potholders, Christmas stockings, etc.
-Coupons for chores, babysitting, etc.
-Hand drawn art
To adults from adults:
-Intricate craft projects, such as a bookshelf you built yourself or a handknit sweater
-A candlelit dinner for two
-An assortment of tasty treats
Making homemade Christmas gifts is so much more meaningful than purchasing them. If you don't believe me, give it a try: I promise the homemade Christmas present will be the hit under the tree.