15 Homemade Holiday Gift Ideas

Simple, stunning and sentimental ... this year, craft the perfect handmade gifts for the loved ones in your life.
By the MOTHER EARTH NEWS editors
November 1, 2006
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A homemade lavender sachet makes a great holiday gift.

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Here are 15 homemade holiday gift ideas to craft or assemble for family and friends this holiday season:

1. Craft personalized greeting cards: Use card stock, available from any office supply store and add your favorite photographs, used greeting cards or magazine photos.

2. Create themed scrapbooks depicting a favorite vacation, holiday or family celebration.

3. Write and illustrate handmade books: Use your imagination to write stories based on personal experiences and adventures. Illustrate the book with photos, magazine pictures or your own hand-drawn illustrations.

4. Make home-brewed soda, cider, beer or wine, or give a brewing kit. To learn how, read Brew Better Soda at Home.

5. Simmer some mulled wine or spiced cider for a warm holiday drink.

6. Make flavored vinegars using your favorite herbs or fruits.

7. Spread cheer with your homemade jam, jelly, butters or breads.

8. Share your garden's bounty by giving braided garlic or onion ropes.

9. Go Italian with homemade pesto, frozen in ice cube trays.

10. Create small sachet bags and fill with dried lavender.

11. Tie bunches of dried herbs with a colorful ribbon and add some dried red peppers for accent color.

12. Fashion a seasonal wreath from dried leaves, seed pods and evergreen boughs.

13. Create “floral” arrangements of fresh evergreen branches, rose hips and bittersweet vines.

14. Tie small kindling bundles of finely split aromatic wood, such as pine or cedar, with red or green cord and arrange in a basket with handles.

15. Assemble windowsill garden kits with several attractive small flowerpots, a bag of potting soil and seeds for basil, chives, dill or other popular kitchen herbs.

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11/26/2006 12:00:00 AM
Goat and beef fat can be rendered to give you lard. Cook the fat until it turns to liquid, pour off the clear liquid through a strainer into a clean container. It will congeal back into fat.

11/24/2006 12:00:00 AM
I always thought it was NOT good to ever burn pine or cedar or any other evergreen, as the rosen will coat your chimney and create a potential fire hazard.

GAIL Erman_1
11/24/2006 12:00:00 AM
Question" I have a supply of goat and beef fat. CAn I use that to make lard? If so can I use it in baking and other cooking so that I do not have to use hydroginated shortening? Thanks

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