Thursday, January 3, 2013

Thoughtful Gifting

I had some last minute DIY gifts I had to put together in time for New Years Day which is when half my family gets together to celebrate Christmas.  This is mostly extended family and I like to do small gifts like the the hand soap and ornaments.

I needed to get something for the kids that would be there who we don't see very often but I like to buy for.  I decided to go with a simple DIY idea, Hot Cocoa.  Thanks to Kristen at Popcorn on the Stove for posting about homemade hot chocolate!  After taking her inspiration I ran with some new ideas.

First I bought cute holiday mugs at the Michael's after Christmas sale.  I forgot to snap a picture before handing them out.  But they were a snowman, Santa, and a reindeer with a giant, 3D, red nose.  Cute for 3 kids under age 12.

I wanted to make hot cocoa "spoons" to give the kids.  The basic process is as follows.

1.  Melt Nestle Chocolate Chips in a small mug.  A little bit at a time.
2.  Dip spoons into chocolate and get a good scoop.  I used plastic ones since I was gifting but if you've making for fun to use at home soon, go ahead and use your own spoons.
3.  Place on wax paper on a plate or cookie tray.
4.  Place in the freezer to harden.  Seemed like 5 minutes was a good amount of time.
5.  Pull out of the freezer and wrap up.  In case you were wondering, no melting of the chocolate occurred then.  I suppose if it was particularly hot you might have a problem.  I'll let you know if I get any complaints from the gift receivers parents.

To add a little flair to my hot cocoa spoons, I decided to make 5 flavors.  They are, in no particular order:

1.  Coconut.  I dipped the spoon as noted above then added shredded coconut on top before freezing.  I figured with would probably rise to the top of cocoa but add a nice flavor for sipping.
2.  Krackle.  I got a bag of candies for Christmas and decided to add these to a spoon.  Again it was a regular spoon, but with some cut up candy pieces on it.
3.  Dark Chocolate.  Another candy that was in the pack.  Just added dark chocolate pieces to the regular spoon.
4.  Peanut Butter.  Instead of scooping a bunch of the melted chocolate on the spoon, I just lightly coated it.  After freezing I removed the spoon and put a bit of peanut butter on.  Then I added more chocolate to cover up the PB so it wasn't sticky and messy.
5.  Caramel.  Same as the PB but when I removed from the freezer I poured a little bit of caramel sauce in the middle then covered with more chocolate.  (Note:  When I was taking these pictures today I noticed the caramel ran out, so make sure it is COMPLETELY covered since the caramel stays smooth out of the fridge.)

Since I made 5 different types.  I wrapped up 1 of each together for each kid.  I then decided to make a cute little label and directions on how to mix up the hot cocoa.  The recipes is also slightly altered from Kristen's because I had to downsize it since she used a whole chocolate bar.

The top lists the flavors and the directions are:

*Add spoon to a cup of warm milk.
*Add in 1/2 tbsp maple syrup and a drop of vanilla.
*Throw in a small pinch of salt.  Mix.
*Top with marshmallows!  Enjoy!!

Tied it all together in a holiday bag and there we have it.  This one was an extra so I didn't tie a festive ribbon on it.


Another DIY gift I did this Holiday were babysitting coupons.  My cousin and her husband have 2 girls (one of whom is my Goddaughter) just 14 months apart and they both work full time jobs.  When I asked her what they (the adults) wanted for Christmas she said, "You can come over here and babysit."  PERFECT!  I call that a win-win situation.

So my husband picked up a few gift cards to restaurants near their house while he was at Giant Eagle.  Darn, I just realized he gets the fuel perks for those, no wonder he was eager to offer.  Moving on....

I got into my scrapbook papers and made mini coupons to tie to the gift cards. 

I apologize for the horrible phone pictures, I was in a hurry to do these the day we left for the Christmas get- together.

The coupons say:  Good for One night out with free babysitting.  Expires 12-31-13.

I was hoping that the expiration date would make them more likely to use the coupons.  And if they don't end up needing us to babysit, at least they have some gift cards to go out and enjoy a dinner while paying a bit less.

Did you do any DIY gifts this Holiday? 

No comments:

Post a Comment