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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Jul. 22, 2008
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    2,035

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bicoastal View Post

    In my web hunt, I learned about the vanilla extract gift. A couple sites said you needed to start 4 weeks in advance to get the right flavor and color. This true?

    Yeah, but you can do what we're doing with our infused boozes: Make cute little labels, which you were probably going to do anyway, and add "Good after xx, 2013" or "Ready on XX, 2013". Small bottles with a small piece of bean each rather than a large single batch and you're good to go!

    There are also a lot of cake/brownie/etc in a mug recipes out there that make cute gifts; could sate your baking craving, sort of. Cute individual mugs with mix & instructions.
    bar.ka think u al.l. susp.ect
    free bar.ka and tidy rabbit



  2. #42
    Join Date
    Dec. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    2,135

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubyfree View Post
    Yeah, but you can do what we're doing with our infused boozes: Make cute little labels, which you were probably going to do anyway, and add "Good after xx, 2013" or "Ready on XX, 2013". Small bottles with a small piece of bean each rather than a large single batch and you're good to go!
    Booze was a big hit at the white elephant last year. Can you share a recipe/instructions? I've never done this before!

    For cute jar foodie ideas, I'm making a coworker a Smores in a Jar kit because of an experience we shared this summer.



  3. #43
    Join Date
    Oct. 15, 2011
    Posts
    1,297

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    I am making one of my uncles a tie blanket as his Christmas gift.
    *Wendy* 4.17.73 - 12.20.05



  4. #44
    Join Date
    Apr. 11, 2001
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    6,800

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    Oil Paintings

    My husband texted me a photo a few months ago while he was fishing on the Snake River. He was excited about a moose that was wading down stream but was just a tiny spec in the photo. I thought the rest of the landscape was fantastic so I did an oil painting from the photo (with a dark spec that's the moose if you already knew it was there. )

    I'm giving an oil painting of hay bales to a friend that keeps trying to get me to sell it to her--which I can't because it was painted from an image I didn't take and don't own so can't make any money for it. Another landscape from the Natchez Trace Parkway will go to a friend that lives near it and drives it all the time and has asked me for years for a painting. Since they actually have a lovely art collection (including a few of museum quality pieces) it's taken me a few decades to come up with something.

    I'm also considering painting a still life of a Tiffany's box with a white bow for my daughter as Tiffany blue is her current favorite color.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Oct. 26, 2000
    Location
    Tempe, AZ
    Posts
    1,829

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubyfree View Post
    If you go to etsy.com and search for cross stitch patterns...
    Thanks! Wouldn't have thought to look there.
    ~ Horse Box Lovers Clique ~



  6. #46
    Join Date
    May. 15, 2011
    Location
    Just south of the Arctic Circle...seriously
    Posts
    334

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    I canned a TON (give or take a few thousand pounds ) of blackberry jam this summer from wild berries growing around my apartment complex. Half are just blackberry jam and half are blackberry-honey jam with honey instead of sugar. So everyone is getting that this year.

    One year I knitted everyone in my family scarves.
    “Thoroughbreds are the best. They’re lighter, quicker, and more intelligent.” -George Morris


    1 members found this post helpful.

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Oct. 14, 2010
    Posts
    3,647

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    I bake fruitcake and a butt-ton of cookies. The fruit for the fruitcake has been marinating in rum/port/Guiness for 6? weeks and I'll probably bake it within a week so I can start soaking it in rum. (no tipsy icon?) I don't think I could not make it at this point. Too many requests for it.

    I want to do a "Pepperidge Farm" cookie mix this year - something more fun than chocolate chips and sugar cookies.

    I'm also making a baby dress for my sister. If I can coax it out of my sewing machine, I've got a pattern for a bare bones "diaper wallet" for BIL.

    I think I have a couple scarves I crocheted last winter when I had ankle surgery that can be wrapped up.



  8. #48
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
    Location
    In Jingle Town
    Posts
    35,184

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    I found a bunch of green yarn and dug up a crochet pattern for little pine trees. I think I will be growing a forest and give it away this year.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.
    GNU Terry Prachett



  9. #49
    Join Date
    Sep. 17, 2003
    Location
    AridZona
    Posts
    2,874

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    I ran across this make your own Altoids recipe today:

    http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/...html#more-9341
    Delicious strawberry flavored death!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Jun. 9, 2012
    Posts
    170

    Default

    Homemade limoncello.



  11. #51
    Join Date
    Jul. 22, 2008
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    2,035

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bicoastal View Post
    Booze was a big hit at the white elephant last year. Can you share a recipe/instructions? I've never done this before!
    You can make ANYTHING vodka. Really. Anything flavorful or odor-ific stuck in a bottle of vodka for a month-six weeks will infuse. Dumped a pile of raspberries into a jar, a little sugar (probably optional if your fruit is very sweet but our berries were not great this year), poured vodka over. Store in a cool dark locale and shake up every few days; strain & serve when it tastes ready. I've done several kinds with candy, my favorite being toffee; any gooey (like gummies) or hard candy should work. You don't need any extra sugar with candy. I've done coffee with lightly smashed coffee beans; vanilla with vanilla beans; cardamon and ginger... experiment! As long as you use a decent vodka, you really can't go wrong.

    We're doing cinnamon tequila (same principal, but looks prettier in a bottle than a pile of raspberry goo etc) with a homemade blood orange margarita mixer & bacon vodka with a homemade spicy bloody mary mix. Bacon vodka tends to make people weep with joy, just so you're prepared.

    ETA: Vodka is easiest to play with because of it's minimal flavor profile and affordability, but that doesn't mean it's the only booze that works. I've done a really herby & savory gin, ginger whiskey, etc. Same rules apply.
    bar.ka think u al.l. susp.ect
    free bar.ka and tidy rabbit



  12. #52
    Join Date
    Dec. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    2,135

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    Quote Originally Posted by arbiter View Post
    Homemade limoncello.
    This might be the winner! Looks easy. I'll have to spend money on the supplies like big glass jar, filter, and final container. For my booze-loving relatives, this is a good idea!



  13. #53
    Join Date
    Dec. 14, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    2,135

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rubyfree View Post
    You can make ANYTHING vodka. Really. Anything flavorful or odor-ific stuck in a bottle of vodka for a month-six weeks will infuse. Dumped a pile of raspberries into a jar, a little sugar (probably optional if your fruit is very sweet but our berries were not great this year), poured vodka over. Store in a cool dark locale and shake up every few days; strain & serve when it tastes ready. I've done several kinds with candy, my favorite being toffee; any gooey (like gummies) or hard candy should work. You don't need any extra sugar with candy. I've done coffee with lightly smashed coffee beans; vanilla with vanilla beans; cardamon and ginger... experiment! As long as you use a decent vodka, you really can't go wrong.

    We're doing cinnamon tequila (same principal, but looks prettier in a bottle than a pile of raspberry goo etc) with a homemade blood orange margarita mixer & bacon vodka with a homemade spicy bloody mary mix. Bacon vodka tends to make people weep with joy, just so you're prepared.

    ETA: Vodka is easiest to play with because of it's minimal flavor profile and affordability, but that doesn't mean it's the only booze that works. I've done a really herby & savory gin, ginger whiskey, etc. Same rules apply.
    Whoa! I bow down before your infusing Greatness. I've never done any of this before. Now I'm intimidated/overwhelmed. Limoncello seems easy. Thoughts? Is Limoncello served in a shot glass?

    I foresee a trip to Michael's for glass jars and paint.



  14. #54
    Join Date
    Jul. 30, 2008
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    678

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    From reading this thread a couple weeks ago, I got the idea to make infused Vodka, so I'm doing that (though I haven't gotten around to it yet, stuck in the house post ACL surgery). I'm making Skittle vodka. I got 10 little bottles (a few ounces each) at Hobby Lobby and am making 2 sets of 5 bottles, one for each color of skittles. Apparently you just dump a whole bunch of one color of skittle into each bottle, fill it with vodka, then filter it back out after a couple days and it's done! I'm going to tie them with coordinating ribbon and arrange in cute baskets.

    I also made some kids gifts for all of the little cousins/family friends that I have. I made 10 homemade tutus this year. They're super easy and super cute! I made all different colors and satin wrapped the waistband which just makes them looks a little bit nicer. The kids can wear them as dress up or out as an outfit and they're pretty cheap!

    I made (or rather, decorated) some binders for baseball card collecting for a few little boys I know. Just some fabric paint markers, cute 3D baseball stickers, the internet to look up logos of their favorite teams, and the binders and card dividers. Easy!

    The last of the homemade gifts I made this year were Sharpie mug candles. Y'all have probably heard of the Sharpie mugs that you make just by drawing on your mug with a Sharpie and baking them at 350 for 30 minutes, so I did those. Then I did some more research and discovered that they sometimes wash off when you wash them in the dishwasher, and after making 6 of them pretty intricately decorated, I did not want that to happen, so I made them into candles! Some wax crystals, the candle making scents, wicks, and they're done!

    I also made some ribbon boards for pictures/memories/whatever for a few of the older girls using canvases, batting, any cute fabric, ribbon, and a staple gun! I loved making these and there are soo many different things you could do with them. I loved theses because they're really quick and easy for anyone to make, and I slipped a picture of the recipient and me to start the board.



  15. #55
    Join Date
    Mar. 29, 2009
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    778

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    I have made a lot of gifts. I knit, spin, and sew, so that leaves me a lot of options. This year I'm spinning a custom yarn for my best friend, knitting my grandmother a scarf, and maybe knifing my dad a hat. My sister asked my mom for a scarf this year for christmas, but after knitting that sister two scarves (both extremely nice, out of moth-proofed, next-to-skin quality wool, made with patterns I designed, in colors specifically matched to her favorite outfits) that she never wore and has since misplaced, I'm not wasting my time on that again.

    Does anyone else get super nervous about giving handmade gifts? I can't hardly stand to be inn the same room when someone opens a gift from me that I made because I'm so nervous about what they're going to think of it.



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