Giving gifts is as much of a pleasure as receiving them. Grandparents are special people that deserve something from the heart. They have struggled with providing Christmas gifts for years and are more interested in making Christmas relaxing and stress free than receiving a guilt load of expensive gifts from their grandchildren. It is a joy for them to receive a gift, made with love, that they know has not put pressure on the family finances. Here are some suggestions for things you can do now to make inexpensive gifts for grandparents who want to keep Christmas simple yet special.
One of the best gifts ever is when a grandchild will frame an unusual picture of himself. Frames are cheap and with digital photography that can be sent to the local drugstore to be printed in any size, it’s an easy gift. He can autograph it like a rock star, decorate the frame, or make it a series and put it in an inexpensive tri-frame. A few suggestions to make the photo unique: you can take a photo while he is standing on his head, or with his hermit crab, pet snake, or hugging his dog. Go wild with a series of funny faces in the tri-frame. This gift will be fun to display all year and guarantees sincere delight from the Grandsters.
For the budding cook in your family, choose a fun holiday mug from the dollar store or your local thrift store and fill it with several home-made packets of peppermint hot chocolate. It’s easy to make upscale hot chocolate! Take a packet of dry cocoa mix and pour it into a bowl. Crush one round starlight mint into fine powder, add mini marshmallows, a dash of dark chocolate cocoa powder and mix thoroughly. Tie it up in plastic wrap using festive curling ribbon. Label it with your own recipe name such as Reindeer Cocoa, or Merry Christmas Mix. Fill the cup, adding a wrapped candy cane as a swizzle stick and you have a fun creative gift for a little more than a dollar. Grandma and Grandpa will love it! Junior will burst with pride when they compliment the beverage he made.
Outdoor gifts are perfect for the grandparents whose homes are bursting with “stuff”. Make a garden stone! Cement is cheap and all the children in the family can make their own garden stepping stone or ornamental stone for both sets of grandparents. Follow the directions mixing the cement and pour it into thrift store cake pans with straight sides lined with plastic. Tap the pan to burp out any air bubbles. Smooth the top with a trowel. Before it sets, cover your child’s hand with Vaseline Petroleum Jelly and make a handprint. Let them write their own name if possible. Decorate with marbles, or make a mosaic border, bug or butterfly with broken crockery or tiles. Each garden stone will be treasured for years to come.
Felted coasters are a “green” craft that makes wonderful gifts. From your closet or a local thrift store let each child choose an old sweater made from 100% wool. Wash only one sweater at a time in hot water with a pair of jeans and something heavy, such as a canvas shoe. Spin dry. It will shrink up and felt into gorgeous material that can be cut without unraveling. Give your child a large template such as a circle or star or a square and let them cut coaster size pieces, four to a set. No hemming is needed but you can put a simple embroidery border to decorate it or embroider their grand parent’s initials or cut flowers, cars etc. from the scraps. Tweens & Teens can make the coasters themselves, younger ones can choose designs, colors and be a part of the actual felting process that makes them feel like this is their gift. This is also a great way to teach children about re-using items instead of throwing them away.
Christmas is a time for families. Grandparents will prefer seeing a child’s delight in giving a gift they made themselves. Keeping it secret heightens anticipation and keeps them thinking of others.