General ramblings

Make It Christmas!

December 2, 2013

So, after my moaning and whining about not being in any way ready for Christmas, it is now already December, and I have progressed hardly any further at all.
BUT, you have all given me some wonderful ideas, so I thought I would share them with you, in case you too want to make some presents this Christmas and are running out of time!
I’ve sorted them in to half hour makes, hour makes, and more than an hour.

Half Hour Makes

  • Upcycle a tin can into a plant holder with a cutting of a spider plant or christmas cactus (it’s retro baby!) or succulents. I have done this before with tin cans, and all you need is some PVA and old comics/magazines or even fabric.
  • OR upcycle a tin can into a candle holder-there is a nice tutorial here from Pure Green Mag
  • Choc truffles. Decent quality choc (cheap from lidl/aldi!), cream and cocoa powder. Awesome 🙂 Here is a recipe to try
  • Instructions and pre-prepared dry ingredients for mug cakes. Possibly including a mug (you can personalise one, see below)!
    OR you can do cookie/cake jars, like my attempt at one here
    clare311
  • How about getting hold of a few brightly coloured, pretty seasonal squashes, then coating them with spray varnish? They make gorgeous ornaments/paperweights/table decorations, and last for ages….. I’ve never tried this, but they sound great!
  • Liquers-if you want to do this, you need to do it ASAP! I have made elderberry gin, but there are lots of other recipes for any kind of flavoured vodka/gin-try this one here
  • Self grow pot plant kit of a nice pot some potting compost and some seeds
  • Chocolate marshmallow fudge a-la Lorraine Pascalls recipie – quick and easy and very yummy. Here is the recipe
  • Body Scrub-there were two recipe suggestions:
    -Sugar Scrub 50g solid coconut oil whipped together with 2 teaspoons of sweet almond oil (olive oil would work too) until fluffy, add 10-15 drops essential oil (I always use bergamot to feel exotic and haven’t tried any others yet) & mix. Gradually add 60g brown sugar (the finer the sugar, the more gentle the scrub will be). You’ll need a 100ml jar (or double it up & stick it in a kilner jar). Scrumptious! And beautifully moisturising
    -Lemon Version- Oh, you can also try a Lemon version. Mix white sugar with enough olive oil to bind, and add lemon juice – done!
  • Melted chocolate dropped onto a baking tray, then sprinkle on the chocolate before it sets, any mixture you like of nuts, seeds, dried fruit, in fact anything you fancy. Use dark, milk and white chocolate. When they are set just put a selection into some pretty cellophane or tissue paper and tie with ribbon
  • Record clocks like this one hubby made for his brother’s 50th
    chris-bday1

One Hour Makes

  • Fat Quarter Aprons for the kids-team up with a cookie mix jar (see above), or a wooden spoon and mixing bowl
  • Homemade sweets in a dish from the charity shop-try the truffle recipe above, or Nigella’s Hokey Pokey
  • A recipe book with a cover decorated by the Smalls or a notebook again with the cover decorated by the Smalls.
  • Tea towels or tote bags and let the smalls decorate them with indelible markers, preferably outside!
  • Homemade heat pillows made from a sleeve of material, maybe a sleeve from old jumper/cardi and rice. Add some drops of essential oil and then they can heat up in microwave to use-I did a similar thing for my mum last year, but I love the idea of using an old jumper-would probably be best to put a liner in though in case the rice tries to escape!
    lavender-bags31
  • Fabric bookmarks-check out this tutorial here
  • There is just about enough time to make picallili or preserved lemons. Very cheap and the picallili is a great little pressie for men, who are always difficult to buy for. Shoosh it up by wrapping in cellophane and ribbon in masculine colours. Recipe for Picallili is here from Lesley’s blog, Thrifty Lesley, as is the Preserved Lemons
  • Photos of the children in re-cycled frames, perhaps jazzed up with collage/mosaic style additions
  • Body Lotion Bars-I am making some of these-I have all the stuff ready to go!
  • A cushion cover made from an old jumper-I might do this with some of my mum’s old jumpers-there is a tutorial here
  • Decorate/personalise plain ceramic mugs (I loved this idea, and on my next visit to town, the charity shop fairy was smiling down on me, and I found THREE plain mugs :)) Here is a great how-to from Delineate your Dwelling

More than an Hour

  • This great Multi-Purpose Wrap
  • A home made hamper made up of a jam, a chutney, possibly something else in a jar and then either some biscuits or mince pies
    gooseberry-jam2
  • Limoncello and biscotti-here are some recipes I found with a quick google: Limoncello and Biscotti
  • A Cheese board/hamper-a variety of cheeses, some homemade cheese biscuits (try this recipe for Sea Salt Biscuits from BBC Good Food) and a chutney or two. Maybe even splash out on a board or a cheese knife to go with it
  • If you are proficient in quilting: A snuggle quilt made from children’s outgrown clothes, backed with an old blanket. This would also make a really lovely present for a grandparent too
  • Patchwork bags
  • Patchwork hot water bottle covers OR you can make these from old woolly jumpers that have been felted
  • Photo calendars-you can get them done online, or buy ones you can put photos in from places like Boots, OR if you are super clever, you can do your own. Hubby did some on the computer last year, I will find out if he used a template and put a link up if so!
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No Comments

  • Reply Jo aka Kiwijo December 3, 2013 at 5:43 pm

    Theres a fab list here Jen, thanks for compiling it and the necessary links. Should keep me going for a bit :o)

    • Reply Jen December 6, 2013 at 11:51 am

      No problem Jo!

  • Reply vickymyerscreations December 3, 2013 at 7:27 am

    Some great ideas:) Looking forward to trying a few… feeling as though I am running to stand still at the moment!!

    • Reply Jen December 6, 2013 at 11:51 am

      Isn’t that always the case at Christmas?!

  • Reply Sue December 2, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Wow! Sooooo many fabulous ideas, and so little time to do them all! Might have to pace myself over next four weeks…..will definitely start with the edible gifts, obviously clearing up the leftovers as I go along! Your ideas are fantastic, keep them coming. Xx

    • Reply Jen December 2, 2013 at 10:44 pm

      Thanks Sue. Can’t take too much credit-they were all the ideas left in the comments by you lovely lot 🙂

  • Reply Rae Hodgetts December 2, 2013 at 7:49 pm

    Thank you for this fabulous post, with so many lovely ideas! I shall be bookmarking it and no doubt returning almost as often as I have to your posts with the chocolate shortbread biscuits and healthy(ish) muffins recipes!
    Now I’m feeling properly festive 🙂

    • Reply Jen December 2, 2013 at 10:44 pm

      Hurrah!

  • Reply lesleygcooper December 2, 2013 at 7:44 pm

    Coincidentally, I posted about making a calendar the other day. http://wp.me/p3MXF5-qA There is a PDF file there for a 2014 calendar, and some ideas on what to do with it.

    There are some great ideas here 🙂

    • Reply Jen December 2, 2013 at 10:44 pm

      Thanks Lesley-will check out your post!

  • Reply fashionforlunch December 2, 2013 at 6:34 pm

    such a good idea!

    http://fashionforlunch.wordpress.com

    • Reply Jen December 2, 2013 at 10:43 pm

      Thankyou 🙂

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