Our Old Homestead Blog shows how to make a rice heat bag. These are wonderful in the winter to warm up your feet in bed, or to use on a stiff neck, or for arthritis. They are very simple to make, and at a fraction of the cost of the $20 plus they sell for in the drug and department stores. If you make them out of fabric scraps, you are only out the price of the rice..
I find they are best if the outer bag is made of flannel. And, I have found nice flannel sheets at the thrift store for 50 cents each. (a sheet will also make 1-2 night gowns or pj pants as well, depending on the size of the sheet and size of your clothing pattern).
Give a themed gift basket.
Did you can your own pasta sauce over the summer? Use a colander for a basket, add some garlic bulbs, noodles, and a wooden spoon.
For a BBQ basket, add a couple different BBQ sauces and some grill tongs, matches and hot mitt.
For a breakfast basket add syrup and pancake mix, and a box of cereal.
For a movie basket add popcorn, candy and a DVD or video.
For a family night basket, get some puzzles, games, popcorn and a couple 2 liters of soda. Games and puzzles are only $1 at many of the dollar stores.
For a spa basket, add sea salts or Epsom salts, loofah sponge, back scrubber, bubble bath, candles, chocolate, bath beads....
Do you sew? A set of reusable cloth grocery bags out of a sturdy washable fabric is something that will be used over and over. They are very very simple to make and there are numerous instructions online, if you just google it.
Have a special little girl to get a gift for? Make her a pillowcase dress. They are very simple to make, colorful and cute! Tipnut tells you how to do it. Different patterns for your level of sewing skills.
Make a birdhouse!
A milk jug cookie mix.
Layer the dry ingredients for cookies. Make a label listing what wet ingredients to add and baking instructions. This can also be done in a mason jar. You could use the same idea for spiced tea or hot cocoa mix.
Christmas Ornaments-this site has a bunch of neat ones
If you have kids, make patio pavers with their hand prints or foot prints. You can buy the kits to do this at the craft stores, OR you can make your own with using quick-crete and a box for the mold. Mix the quick-crete according to decorations and pour to your desired thickness (about 3 inches) into the mold, or box. Decorate the top with writing, hand prints, colored glass, marbles, tiles.... Let sit undisturbed for 3-5 days until it cures. Peel away the mold or box.
Homemade Bath Salts by Sheryl
- Bottle or Jar
- Epsom Salts
- Food Coloring
- Perfume or Essential Oil
Combine the desired amount of Epsom salts (enough to fit in your bottle or jar) with food coloring. Mix well so color is even. Add your perfume or essential oil and mix again. Spread the mixture out on a sheet of wax paper to dry for a couple of hours and then put it in the bottle or jar.
While the salts can be used right away, the perfume or essential oil will blend better with the salt if it is allowed to set in the jar for a few weeks.
Make a No-Sew Fleece Blanket by Sherri Osborn, About.com
Gather 2 peices of fleece, the same size, that coodinate in color or theme, scissors and a ruler.
Start out by laying the piece of fleece that will be the back of your blanket, right side down, on your work surface. I was making a baby-sized blanket so it fit on my work counter, but it works better with a larger blanket to lay it out on a floor. Smooth out the piece of fleece using your hand.
Now, lay the piece of fleece that will be the front of your blanket, right side up, on top of the first piece of fleece you laid out. Again, smooth out the piece of fleece with your hand so it lays flat.
Make sure you cut through both piece of fleece and trim your fleece to whatever size you want your blanket to be. The cuts do not have to be perfectly even. Please note, the finished blanket will appear about 8- to 10-inches smaller than the size you cut because of the fringe!
The first thing you want to do is to is prepare your corners to be cut. The key here is to measure in the same length as what you will make your fringe. I am cutting my fringe about 4-inches long, so I measured in 4-inches from each side in the corner. Mark your lines and repeat this for each corner.
Next, simply cut off each corner square that you marked.
All you do now is cut fringe along each edge. Make sure you cut through both thicknesses of fleece. My fringe is about 4-inches long and 1 1/2- to 2-inches wide. You can make your fringe bigger than this, but I would suggest not going much smaller. Anything too much smaller than what I cut would be hard to tie.
To attach the top piece of fleece to the bottom piece of fleece, you simply tie the fringe together. Grab a set of fringe pieces (a back and front piece), and tie a simple overhand knot in them.
Continue tying the pieces of fleece together until you have worked your way all around the blanket. Your fleece tied blanket is now done!
How about a photo, printed off onto wood? Check out this site for a very easy video of how to do it--its very simple, even a child can do it! This gift would also work for making custom wooden blocks for a preschooler room for decoration, or any room that has a country or western decor.
From http://www.couponcloset.net/12-days-homemade-christmas-ornaments-day-7-dollar-store-string-ornament/ this is a real cute and simple idea for the tree. You could use string of any color and even kids can do this one. It could be for about any holiday.
One of my favorites from Yes Missy... is the teacup candle. Different teacups on different print table runners would be good for any holiday.