Author Topic: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!  (Read 30283 times)

Rebecca Stapler

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #50 on: July 22, 2014, 10:14:20 AM »
LOVE the gingerbread men!  So cute!

I'm five hacky-sacks down, and halfway done with my 6th.  My daughter seems to love them as well, so I might make some for her too.  I can get 7 out of one ball of yarn, and she would make the 7th kid, so it kinda works.

I bought the second two colors at Hobby Lobby over the weekend.  One opened on 7/4 about four blocks from my house, so we packed the kids up in the double stroller and braved the heat to go check it out.  Sales everywhere!  I also found a 40% off coupon online and was a happy camper.  :)

Thanks :)  Good score at Hobby Lobby with the coupon. IDK about Hobby Lobby, but Michael's an JoAnn always have coupons available somewhere, and they both honor each others' coupons. So, if JoAnn has a 50% off coupon and Michael's only has 40% (or 25% off entire purchase), use the 40% off JoAnn coupon at Michaels if you're only buying one thing.

Blany

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #51 on: July 22, 2014, 11:31:27 AM »
Iím in on this.
I home brew beer, vanilla extract, infuse alcohol with herbs(basil vodka)and veggies (jalapeno tequila) from the garden and bottle wine.  So I have all the adults in my life covered.
Have to figure out some things for the little cousins. Thanks for the ideas.  Last year I took my two young cousins to a Red Wings game.  They have dreams of playing in the NHL.  Cheap seats on stub hub were about $15 bucks each we took a tunnel bus from Canada to Detroit that was another $8 bucks each. It was enjoyable and I am not opposed to doing that again.  However, some of the DIY ideas for young kids are pretty good and I will test my skills.

hermoninny

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #52 on: July 22, 2014, 11:48:26 AM »
LOVE the gingerbread men!  So cute!

I'm five hacky-sacks down, and halfway done with my 6th.  My daughter seems to love them as well, so I might make some for her too.  I can get 7 out of one ball of yarn, and she would make the 7th kid, so it kinda works.

I bought the second two colors at Hobby Lobby over the weekend.  One opened on 7/4 about four blocks from my house, so we packed the kids up in the double stroller and braved the heat to go check it out.  Sales everywhere!  I also found a 40% off coupon online and was a happy camper.  :)

Thanks :)  Good score at Hobby Lobby with the coupon. IDK about Hobby Lobby, but Michael's an JoAnn always have coupons available somewhere, and they both honor each others' coupons. So, if JoAnn has a 50% off coupon and Michael's only has 40% (or 25% off entire purchase), use the 40% off JoAnn coupon at Michaels if you're only buying one thing.

Good to know!  I'll probably stick to HL just because I can walk there in less than 10 minutes.  Michaels is a walkable/bikable distance, but the road isn't very safe.  You have to pass Costco and I fear the Costco parking lot (and those exiting from it) with my life.  The nearest JoAnn is quite a ways away.

Lyngi

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #53 on: August 24, 2014, 03:23:57 PM »
Last year I made pearl hair pins for my mom and sister (from my stash).  I bought silver colored bobby pins because the wire I used to wrap was silver.  I also crocheted fingerless mitts. 
         No idea yet what to make for this year.  Usually I buy tickets of some sort (to the fair or the circus) for my nephew's (10 and 13)

ariapluscat

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #54 on: August 25, 2014, 10:09:10 AM »
This sounds good. I've wanted to make a dent in my art supplies that I've been hoarding but not using. Giving something heartfelt and handmade for christmas == perfect!

valve

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #55 on: August 25, 2014, 12:56:18 PM »
I picked about 8 gallons of blackberries this summer. About half of the batch is frozen for pies throughout the year and the other half I made into homemade jam in half-pint jars. Perfect for family and friends. Tie a ribbon around the top and I'm all set!


Write Thyme

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #56 on: August 25, 2014, 01:55:25 PM »
So far I'm going to be making:

vanilla bubble bath
banana bread
sugar cookies
seasoned pretzels
jewelry
honey butter
stationary/post cards
framed baby pictures

And possibly bird seed ornaments. I wanted to do vanilla extract, but I don't have enough time for that this year. (I'm going to put vanilla beans on my wishlist so I can make the extract next year and make myself some vanilla body oil)
« Last Edit: August 25, 2014, 01:58:10 PM by Write Thyme »

citrine

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #57 on: August 25, 2014, 02:01:46 PM »
Thank you for the ideas everyone :)
We need to bring down the spending this year as well...Hubby and I are taking a trip in October and Christmas will be a bit lean this year.  I am still giving our boys $100 in cash and will be baking cookies, knitting a scarf, and getting them a shirt.  Hubby and I will probably pool in the money we were going to spend and go have an "experience date".  I will be baking him his favorite cookies though! 
I still have my parents, a couple of our friends, and my clients to get something for.  I am thinking home made cookies and an inspirational wooden sign will be good.  I am taking a Wood working class in September.....very excited about this :)

4alpacas

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #58 on: August 25, 2014, 04:37:43 PM »
This is a bit off topic...

Does anyone have a knitting pattern for baby booties?  I have a few in books, but they're boring looking.  I want something cute! 

I've started knitting again.  Mostly during my commute. 

Write Thyme

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #59 on: August 25, 2014, 05:10:07 PM »
This is a bit off topic...

Does anyone have a knitting pattern for baby booties?  I have a few in books, but they're boring looking.  I want something cute! 

I've started knitting again.  Mostly during my commute.

If you don't mind paying you can check out Etsy or Ravelry. I think Ravelry has free options.

4alpacas

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #60 on: August 25, 2014, 05:15:01 PM »
This is a bit off topic...

Does anyone have a knitting pattern for baby booties?  I have a few in books, but they're boring looking.  I want something cute! 

I've started knitting again.  Mostly during my commute.

If you don't mind paying you can check out Etsy or Ravelry. I think Ravelry has free options.
Thanks!  I still have an account on Ravelry, and I forgot about the free patterns.  There are a ton of options! 

expatartist

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #61 on: August 26, 2014, 11:46:47 PM »
To wrap my homemade lip- and body-balms, I'm making linen washcloths and face towels. They'll be sewn by ladies at the market next to my work. So not 100% homemade - a sewing machine isn't a worthwhile investment since I'm just here 2 more years - but it'll be supporting local tailors at a price much lower than anything here at similar quality.

Anatidae V

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #62 on: August 28, 2014, 08:21:41 PM »
I'm going to read all these cool ideas later, but I wanted to join the gauntlet before I forget again! I'm making oven mitts in the shape of cupcakes this year. This will also use up the fabric I've started stashing instead of using because "it's too pretty!"

swick

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #63 on: September 30, 2014, 05:20:46 PM »
How is everyone doing?

I made a sweet deal with a friend of mine who is a total geek and amazing hooker (crochet) and we have decided to do a present exchange. I am making a bunch of aromatherapy stuff for her to give away this year and she is making me a whole bunch of custom crochet. If your curious you can see some of her awesomeness here: https://www.facebook.com/courtchet

She creates all her own patterns and is really good at actualizing ideas so I I have ordered:

3 Purple Tentacle Keychains (hubby, hubby's dad and brother, one of the first games they all played together growing up)
Stargate Keychain (sister)
Sack boy Keychain with a red cape and long handlebar mustache for Hubby
Navi Keychain - sister in law
D&Deeple in keychain form (one rouge and one warrior) - not sure who for yet, buy most of our friends are gamers.
Monster grocery bag holder - Not sure who I will give this to, or if I'll keep it for me :)
Hat with a brim and covers the ears for my sister.

I keep coming up with ideas, so in all possibility most of my Christmas shopping will be covered and I'll just have to make a boatload of aromatherapy stuff. I'm totally excited!

Mostly posting because, it is a great way to give awesome homemade without it being *your* homemade - which adds some variety if you give out homemade stuff a lot.


WESTOFTHEHUDSON

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #64 on: September 30, 2014, 07:35:08 PM »
This sounds like fun. I try to get my inlaws on board but it's been more difficult. They're starting to buy more consumable things at least (premium coffee I enjoy but won't pay 20%more for).... I just took a cowl off my needles for my best friend and will mail it to her shortly. It was using up some yarn I had in the house

I'd like to knit cozies for mugs for my inlaws as at least a stocking stuffer.

Worsted Skeins

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #65 on: October 18, 2014, 07:28:06 AM »
I wanted to share a sewing idea for the homebrewer in your life. 

The last time my husband went to the homebrew store, they bagged his stuff in a malt sack which I immediately claimed. The sack is woven plastic, lined with clear plastic. I cut away the liner and stitched a tote from the woven, making sure that the "Malz" and "Use no hooks" featured prominently.

The material is a bit of a pain as it is woven and shreds.  French seams should prevent this when the bag is in use.

Other ideas for later experimentation include making an apron.  Online I have seen malt bags turned into compartmentalized totes for growlers or six pack holders.

Other sources for similar bags will be friends who raise chickens.

Charm14

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #66 on: October 24, 2014, 07:15:48 PM »
I'm in! I don't know what I'll make yet, but I have a decent stash of yarn that needs crocheted and Ravelry is full of awesome patterns. I like the homemade vanilla idea, thanks for the suggestion.

Fodder

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #67 on: October 26, 2014, 10:59:50 AM »
I'm totally new here, but I really enjoyed the ideas in this thread, so I thought I would share some of my own.

In past years, I have done bath scrubs (bit hit), and cookies in a jar (also a hit), but what was a really big hit last year was this lentil soup in a jar.  The recipe looked festive, tasted amazing, and I loved it because it used only real ingredients and was super simple for recipients to make (just add water).  I'll be doing it again this year.

I'm also planning on making 'magic bags' (fabric filled with rice, which you can freeze or microwave to warm up) from various fabric scraps I have lying around.  I've made a couple for myself and they are fantastic for aches and pains, or just for throwing in the bed on a cold night to warm up your feet.

I also have the kids make ornaments too (I did the snowman handprint ornaments a couple of years ago and they turned out super cute, were very inexpensive to make and the grandparents love them).

For the kids, I have some larger pieces of fabric, and I'm planning on making a couple of bean bag throw cushions (at first I thought I would make a fancy pouf, but I'm too lazy and the trim is too time consuming and expensive).

I'm not doing a 100% homemade Christmas, but will fill in the gaps with appropriate modest gift cards where necessary.

swick

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #68 on: October 26, 2014, 11:43:07 AM »
I'm totally new here, but I really enjoyed the ideas in this thread, so I thought I would share some of my own.

In past years, I have done bath scrubs (bit hit), and cookies in a jar (also a hit), but what was a really big hit last year was this lentil soup in a jar.  The recipe looked festive, tasted amazing, and I loved it because it used only real ingredients and was super simple for recipients to make (just add water).  I'll be doing it again this year.

I'm also planning on making 'magic bags' (fabric filled with rice, which you can freeze or microwave to warm up) from various fabric scraps I have lying around.  I've made a couple for myself and they are fantastic for aches and pains, or just for throwing in the bed on a cold night to warm up your feet.

I also have the kids make ornaments too (I did the snowman handprint ornaments a couple of years ago and they turned out super cute, were very inexpensive to make and the grandparents love them).

For the kids, I have some larger pieces of fabric, and I'm planning on making a couple of bean bag throw cushions (at first I thought I would make a fancy pouf, but I'm too lazy and the trim is too time consuming and expensive).

I'm not doing a 100% homemade Christmas, but will fill in the gaps with appropriate modest gift cards where necessary.


Welcome, Fodder! would you mind sharing the lentil soup recipe? Sounds awesome!

Mrs WW

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #69 on: October 26, 2014, 03:16:03 PM »
My favourite site for inspiration is purlbee.com. Right now you get a free pattern (sew, knit, crochet etc) if you join their mailing list. Have fun!

Astatine

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #70 on: October 26, 2014, 03:56:57 PM »
I'm totally new here, but I really enjoyed the ideas in this thread, so I thought I would share some of my own.

In past years, I have done bath scrubs (bit hit), and cookies in a jar (also a hit), but what was a really big hit last year was this lentil soup in a jar.  The recipe looked festive, tasted amazing, and I loved it because it used only real ingredients and was super simple for recipients to make (just add water).  I'll be doing it again this year.

I'm also planning on making 'magic bags' (fabric filled with rice, which you can freeze or microwave to warm up) from various fabric scraps I have lying around.  I've made a couple for myself and they are fantastic for aches and pains, or just for throwing in the bed on a cold night to warm up your feet.

I also have the kids make ornaments too (I did the snowman handprint ornaments a couple of years ago and they turned out super cute, were very inexpensive to make and the grandparents love them).

For the kids, I have some larger pieces of fabric, and I'm planning on making a couple of bean bag throw cushions (at first I thought I would make a fancy pouf, but I'm too lazy and the trim is too time consuming and expensive).

I'm not doing a 100% homemade Christmas, but will fill in the gaps with appropriate modest gift cards where necessary.


Welcome, Fodder! would you mind sharing the lentil soup recipe? Sounds awesome!

Another +1 request for the lentil soup recipe. Totally sounds like something I could do!

Fodder

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #71 on: October 26, 2014, 06:29:08 PM »
I'm totally new here, but I really enjoyed the ideas in this thread, so I thought I would share some of my own.

In past years, I have done bath scrubs (bit hit), and cookies in a jar (also a hit), but what was a really big hit last year was this lentil soup in a jar.  The recipe looked festive, tasted amazing, and I loved it because it used only real ingredients and was super simple for recipients to make (just add water).  I'll be doing it again this year.

I'm also planning on making 'magic bags' (fabric filled with rice, which you can freeze or microwave to warm up) from various fabric scraps I have lying around.  I've made a couple for myself and they are fantastic for aches and pains, or just for throwing in the bed on a cold night to warm up your feet.

I also have the kids make ornaments too (I did the snowman handprint ornaments a couple of years ago and they turned out super cute, were very inexpensive to make and the grandparents love them).

For the kids, I have some larger pieces of fabric, and I'm planning on making a couple of bean bag throw cushions (at first I thought I would make a fancy pouf, but I'm too lazy and the trim is too time consuming and expensive).

I'm not doing a 100% homemade Christmas, but will fill in the gaps with appropriate modest gift cards where necessary.


Welcome, Fodder! would you mind sharing the lentil soup recipe? Sounds awesome!

Another +1 request for the lentil soup recipe. Totally sounds like something I could do!

Here it is!  I took it from here, but I modified the quantities so it would fit in a 2c mason jar - I personally find that the original made about 3 c of mix, which didn't fit any of my jars, and when you used a 1L jar, it simply made too much soup to be eaten in a single sitting (I was giving to some couples/singles and didn't want them to end up with a vat of soup).

Credit to original:
http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/recipefinder/curried-lentil-soup-december-recipes

My slightly modified recipe (per jar; I found using a kitchen scale was easiest as I just poured in lentils until I hit the weights I wanted).

Ingredients

6 oz red lentils
1 t Salt
3   tablespoon(s) minced dried onion
1   tablespoon(s) curry powder
1/2   teaspoon(s) garlic powder
6 oz   pound(s) green lentils
1   tablespoon(s) dried parsley leaves
 dried apple rings, chopped finely
Directions

In bottom of each glass jar, place red lentils; top with 1 teaspoons salt, 3 tablespoons dried onion, 1 tablespoon curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 6 ounces green lentils, 1 tablespoon parsley, and as many apple pieces as will fit.

Seal jars and store at room temperature up to 1 month (some people stored way longer and it still turned out great; I got the apple pieces from Bulk Barn and they never went bad).

For cooking instructions, combine jar contents with 6 c. water (3 jars), bring to a boil and simmer for about 20-25 minutes (or until the green lentils are done).  You can pulse with an immersion blender, if desired, but it's not necessary.

I made about 20 jars last year and probably got requests for the soup recipe from 3/4 of the recipients.  I kept some for myself because they are so convenient and the soup is really delicious.  Bonus is that it's clean, cheap and vegan.  :D  I'm just trying to figure out if I'm better off buying lentils in bulk or watching out for sales of bags of lentils at the grocery store - when you make so many, it really does add up!

MayDay

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #72 on: October 26, 2014, 07:08:16 PM »
The lentil soup looks amazing.

I think I will do rice bags with the kids. They will get a huge kick out of helping me, and we can give them to relatives.


Astatine

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #73 on: October 26, 2014, 07:48:00 PM »

Here it is!  I took it from here, but I modified the quantities so it would fit in a 2c mason jar - I personally find that the original made about 3 c of mix, which didn't fit any of my jars, and when you used a 1L jar, it simply made too much soup to be eaten in a single sitting (I was giving to some couples/singles and didn't want them to end up with a vat of soup).

Credit to original:
http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/recipefinder/curried-lentil-soup-december-recipes

My slightly modified recipe (per jar; I found using a kitchen scale was easiest as I just poured in lentils until I hit the weights I wanted).

Ingredients

6 oz red lentils
1 t Salt
3   tablespoon(s) minced dried onion
1   tablespoon(s) curry powder
1/2   teaspoon(s) garlic powder
6 oz   pound(s) green lentils
1   tablespoon(s) dried parsley leaves
 dried apple rings, chopped finely
Directions

In bottom of each glass jar, place red lentils; top with 1 teaspoons salt, 3 tablespoons dried onion, 1 tablespoon curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 6 ounces green lentils, 1 tablespoon parsley, and as many apple pieces as will fit.

Seal jars and store at room temperature up to 1 month (some people stored way longer and it still turned out great; I got the apple pieces from Bulk Barn and they never went bad).

For cooking instructions, combine jar contents with 6 c. water (3 jars), bring to a boil and simmer for about 20-25 minutes (or until the green lentils are done).  You can pulse with an immersion blender, if desired, but it's not necessary.

I made about 20 jars last year and probably got requests for the soup recipe from 3/4 of the recipients.  I kept some for myself because they are so convenient and the soup is really delicious.  Bonus is that it's clean, cheap and vegan.  :D  I'm just trying to figure out if I'm better off buying lentils in bulk or watching out for sales of bags of lentils at the grocery store - when you make so many, it really does add up!

Thanks so much! For other metricated people like me, I just did a google convert for oz:

Ingredients

170g red lentils
1 t Salt
3   tablespoon(s) minced dried onion
1   tablespoon(s) curry powder
1/2   teaspoon(s) garlic powder
170g   pound(s) green lentils
1   tablespoon(s) dried parsley leaves
 dried apple rings, chopped finely


Does c stand for cup? And if so, do have you any idea how many millilitres per cup? (our metric cups are 250 ml, so 4 cups per litre)

Sorry for the questions. Volumetric imperial measurements have always confused me (I've kind of got a handle on inches, feet, miles and pounds, but the rest is a mystery :)).

Fodder

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #74 on: October 26, 2014, 08:34:52 PM »

Here it is!  I took it from here, but I modified the quantities so it would fit in a 2c mason jar - I personally find that the original made about 3 c of mix, which didn't fit any of my jars, and when you used a 1L jar, it simply made too much soup to be eaten in a single sitting (I was giving to some couples/singles and didn't want them to end up with a vat of soup).

Credit to original:
http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/recipefinder/curried-lentil-soup-december-recipes

My slightly modified recipe (per jar; I found using a kitchen scale was easiest as I just poured in lentils until I hit the weights I wanted).

Ingredients

6 oz red lentils
1 t Salt
3   tablespoon(s) minced dried onion
1   tablespoon(s) curry powder
1/2   teaspoon(s) garlic powder
6 oz   pound(s) green lentils
1   tablespoon(s) dried parsley leaves
 dried apple rings, chopped finely
Directions

In bottom of each glass jar, place red lentils; top with 1 teaspoons salt, 3 tablespoons dried onion, 1 tablespoon curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, 6 ounces green lentils, 1 tablespoon parsley, and as many apple pieces as will fit.

Seal jars and store at room temperature up to 1 month (some people stored way longer and it still turned out great; I got the apple pieces from Bulk Barn and they never went bad).

For cooking instructions, combine jar contents with 6 c. water (3 jars), bring to a boil and simmer for about 20-25 minutes (or until the green lentils are done).  You can pulse with an immersion blender, if desired, but it's not necessary.

I made about 20 jars last year and probably got requests for the soup recipe from 3/4 of the recipients.  I kept some for myself because they are so convenient and the soup is really delicious.  Bonus is that it's clean, cheap and vegan.  :D  I'm just trying to figure out if I'm better off buying lentils in bulk or watching out for sales of bags of lentils at the grocery store - when you make so many, it really does add up!

Thanks so much! For other metricated people like me, I just did a google convert for oz:

Ingredients

170g red lentils
1 t Salt
3   tablespoon(s) minced dried onion
1   tablespoon(s) curry powder
1/2   teaspoon(s) garlic powder
170g   pound(s) green lentils
1   tablespoon(s) dried parsley leaves
 dried apple rings, chopped finely


Does c stand for cup? And if so, do have you any idea how many millilitres per cup? (our metric cups are 250 ml, so 4 cups per litre)

Sorry for the questions. Volumetric imperial measurements have always confused me (I've kind of got a handle on inches, feet, miles and pounds, but the rest is a mystery :)).

No worries! I use both metric and imperial (my scale toggles with the push of a button).  And yes, the general conversion for cup is 250 ml. You may find you need to adjust amounts a but to make sure everything fits and fills the jar (hence why I save the apples for last).

Ascotillion

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #75 on: October 27, 2014, 03:38:50 AM »
I saw somebody on reddit posting a large batch of slow-cooked apple butter, I think I'm inspired. It'll be a great way to get rid of these jars as well!

Link here.

My sister is pregnant with her first child (due in May), and I'm trying to think of something nice I could make or do for her, but I'm not sure where she'll be living so I want to do something consumable. Any moustachians out there who have been pregnant, was there anything you craved in the second/third trimester? She's a vegan, so a lot of my comfort baking is out!

Fodder

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #76 on: October 27, 2014, 08:10:55 AM »
Ascotillion - you should check out OhSheGlows - it's a vegan recipe blog, and the blogger actually just had a baby and has a whole series on vegan freezer cooking (and just a ton of delicious recipes).  I'm not remotely vegan, but I really love trying out her stuff.  Her GloBars are delicious, as are any of the seed/protein bite recipes I've made (and her casseroles/soups too).

http://ohsheglows.com/

swick

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #77 on: October 27, 2014, 01:55:42 PM »
Thanks for the recipe, Fodder.  All my family LOVE lentil soup and curry, and I have a bunch of apples I dried to use up. this is definitly going on my "to make" list!

starbuck

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #78 on: October 27, 2014, 03:24:28 PM »
She's a vegan, so a lot of my comfort baking is out!

Vegan Thumbprint Cookies! This is one of my favorite cookies, and it happens to be vegan. You could do an assortment with different jams.
http://www.thekitchn.com/cookie-recipe-lifechanging-veg-134691#recipe

And seconding the recommendation for Oh She Glows. Her recipes are great.

Ascotillion

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #79 on: October 27, 2014, 04:36:31 PM »
Those cookies look delicious!! I'll check out the blog today, the first post about teas is already 100% my sister, so it's looking good!

Ohio Teacher

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #80 on: October 27, 2014, 05:11:13 PM »
Last year, my wife made homemade vanilla (seems to be a popular one on here), jam, and apple butter.  This year, we're going for 100% DIY homemade Christmas. 

So far, we've made several large Mason jars of apple butter for everyone.   It is so good, it rivals the Apple Barn in Pigeon Forge, TN.  She is currently making chalkboard drink coasters.  She is also in the process of infusing bourbon to make it apple pie flavored.  That takes several weeks. 

I know my wife has a list of a dozen or so other things that she will be doing.  As a SAHM, she will be doing most of the projects and I will "help" where needed.  She makes all of her own cleaning and beauty products anyway so this is right in her wheelhouse.  I did, however, do about 75% of the work on the apple butter so I'm kind of proud of that. 

This was all spurred by what we spent on Christmas the last few years on family and friends.  We finally came to the agreement together that you don't have to spend a certain amount of money on someone to tell them you love them. 

daymare

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #81 on: October 28, 2014, 07:56:54 AM »
Love the thread - I have a suggestion: arm-knitted infinity scarves! (http://www.instructables.com/id/Arm-Knit-An-Infinity-Scarf-In-30-Minutes/)

It's basically knitting with your hands (so knitters and non-knitters alike can do this).  I'm a knitter ( well ... I made a scarf, a hat, and a sock, then petered out b/c knitting makes my back hurt :() so it was really easy to understand the mechanics, but I posted a link with a bunch of pictures & detailed instructions (couldn't find the original link I used).  I ended up making one for myself last year, and then making one for my brother's gf and for a gift exchange at a party.  The scarves took my about 15 minutes each, and cost very little if you're buying synthetic yarn (I bought on Amazon), maybe $5 per scarf, but it could be a lot less if you bought in bulk.  A year later, I'm still wearing mine -- it's a bit fuzzy now b/c the yarn I used wasn't really high quality, but it's warm and comfortable and infinity scarves are the best.

(Attaching a picture if anyone wants to see how fabulous it looks - and I'm happy to answer any questions

couponvan

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #82 on: October 29, 2014, 10:50:47 AM »
1/2 way homemade....
Homemade truffles - I am getting some help from 2 neighbors.  We'll each make two fillings in quantity.  Then we are going to come together for the dipping day so we end up with 6 different kinds of truffles. We get xmas decoractive salad/dinner plates and xmas plastic wrap on clearance each year and then put the truffles on those and hand them out.

Which reminds me I better get going on those pumpkin truffles for Halloween night or all my adult neighbors are going to be MAD at me.... :-)

going2ER

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #83 on: November 05, 2014, 12:27:18 PM »
This year for my parents I will be doing a picture of all of the grandkids. There is only 6 of them, but its hard to get them all together, especially since 2 are away at university, and my daughter doesn't finish until Dec 20. Since I will have the kids together I will also do a group shot of my sisters kids and then individual poses of each of them, I already have the frame for this one, I had picked it up on clearance a while ago, but it has a spot for a 5x7 and 3 4x6 so it will work perfectly.

sheepgetlambs

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #84 on: November 06, 2014, 03:57:49 PM »
Two years ago I made sillouhettes (no idea how to spell that) of each of my kids for the grandparents. I purchased two sheets of fadeless black paper from a scrapbooking store and two sheets of archival white. After lots of experimenting with cheap construction paper, I got good enough to work on the purchased paper.

Here is what I did:
I took side photos of my kids against a window. I digitally manipulated them to make them black and white with the strongest contrast I could. I printed them out as 5x7s. Then I cut them out, very, very carefully. I learned that the small corners cut better on a self-healing mat with an exacto knife than with scissors. I then placed the cut-out photo on the black paper and cut around it. It was slow going but they looked great. I then mounted them on the white paper and placed them in very inexpensive black frames. Each sheet of paper produced two silouhettes so I was able to make one of each child for each set of grandparents. They were enthusiastically received.

I chose to make them because sending in a photo and having them professionally made is very, very expensive. A little time and practice and mine turned out just as good.

Tip, have your child slightly open his/her mouth, or even smile or laugh when you take the picture. Also, don't worry if their hair isn't perfect. The little wisps are cute when cut out.

GardenFun

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #85 on: November 06, 2014, 05:02:59 PM »
We have 5 nieces and nephews, ages 6-10.  They will be receiving a "Snow Play, then Relax" kit:

- Mason jar containing hot chocolate mix, marshmallows and crushed peppermint
- Biscotti cookies (they travel well and can be made ahead of time)
- Cinnamon sugar almonds
- 1 snow block mold (purchased)
- Lip balm (either purchase or made)

Then I am going to take $5-$10 and fold it into various origami shapes.  Did a google search and found fighter jets, hearts, butterflies - many awesome designs that the kids should find entertaining. 

fireferrets

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #86 on: November 06, 2014, 05:24:30 PM »
It's official, the sisters and I are exchanging baked goods instead of store-bought junk this year!
I'm considering it a competition and putting my best game-face on. My Raspberry Blackout Cake is going to blow them outta the water! :D

Goldielocks

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #87 on: November 16, 2014, 11:47:13 AM »
I made fruitcake using my DH's old family recipe yesterday.  ( actually called wedding cake on the index card).  Because he lives fruitcake and hates most of the onbes ypou get at the store. These are fruit loiafs barely held together by cake, really.

Now I understand why they were common gifts.  Not cheap to make, but a labour of love, and just about the right price for a nice gift.  $8 to $9 maye for a 4x4x4 cake.  Worth about $16+ in the store.

So my new idea for the adults is to find historical recipes from their Christmas childhood, and make a batch of that for each of them.  Leftovers are my christmas baking, of course!


Hmm. Matrimonial cake (aka date squares) for my dad, who was born at the start of the war... Fruitcake(wedding cake) for MIL,  nanaimo bars for big sister, plum pudding for auntie...    I wonder if I can find old family photos to copy to include in the wrapping ?

Anatidae V

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #88 on: November 16, 2014, 04:10:55 PM »
I made fruitcake using my DH's old family recipe yesterday.  ( actually called wedding cake on the index card).  Because he lives fruitcake and hates most of the onbes ypou get at the store. These are fruit loiafs barely held together by cake, really.

Now I understand why they were common gifts.  Not cheap to make, but a labour of love, and just about the right price for a nice gift.  $8 to $9 maye for a 4x4x4 cake.  Worth about $16+ in the store.

So my new idea for the adults is to find historical recipes from their Christmas childhood, and make a batch of that for each of them.  Leftovers are my christmas baking, of course!


Hmm. Matrimonial cake (aka date squares) for my dad, who was born at the start of the war... Fruitcake(wedding cake) for MIL,  nanaimo bars for big sister, plum pudding for auntie...    I wonder if I can find old family photos to copy to include in the wrapping ?
That is a brilliant idea! Filing that one for use next year!

somecobwebs

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #89 on: November 23, 2014, 06:59:35 PM »
Absolutely doing this!!!

So I thought I had everything all figured out. Cute handmade cork elves for stocking stuffers, pickled carrots for dad and sister, and carrots or apple jelly for my mom. Generally when we are apart, my extended family exchange presents as a group - i.e. we send my dad's sister's family one present from our family, etc.

Then it was announced that we're moving from the small intimate Christmas to a family reunion for Christmas.

This will be wonderful in many, many ways. However, the number of stockings to stuff with homemade elves has jumped from three to fourteen, and I feel like it would look odd if my parents/sister got personally-made pickled carrots and my other relatives didn't. PLUS, I can't take the carrots on an airplane unless I check a bag, which would be a huge hassle - and that means I need to buy glass jars for them instead of using the decorated plastic containers that I was planning on reusing!

I could make a large jar of pickled carrots for each of the immediate families, but that makes the number of gifts even more difficult to take.

Maybe I should give the pickled carrots to my immediate family before we leave - maybe the weekend before? They'll still get the cute stocking stuffers on Christmas day.

In terms of other crafty presents, things are going fairly well. Finished a Chanukah present for my SO's mother - a woven star of David. She's not very homemade-y, so I am a little nervous about the reception, but at least I tried. Roommate will be getting a beautiful Christmas house that I picked up for $5 and probably also a cork elf or angel :)

Goldielocks

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #90 on: November 23, 2014, 08:57:07 PM »
Good problems to gave, all told.

Definitely give the pickles ahead of time, (citing plane travel challenge)and make 14 elves, and enjoy the company and praise.   You could even keep to original number of elves and just make Christmas card ( nice ones) for everyone.




RetiredAt63

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #91 on: November 26, 2014, 06:42:25 AM »
No, No!  Not "home-made" - it is HAND CRAFTED!!  Reframe your language to reflect the work and skill that went into it.  And present it that way.

In terms of other crafty presents, things are going fairly well. Finished a Chanukah present for my SO's mother - a woven star of David. She's not very homemade-y, so I am a little nervous about the reception, but at least I tried.

Artemis67

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #92 on: November 26, 2014, 09:31:05 PM »
Kid sister and BIL: They love to garden and cook, are real homebodies, and like handmade stuff. So they're getting crocheted, then felted, wool trivets and coasters (made from recycled wool from thrift-store sweaters), plus oven mitts and pot holders from fabric I designed for them and stenciled/painted myself (the insulating layer will be the felted remains of an old wool blanket ruined by moths). I may include some cute dish towels while I'm at it because kid sis has a weakness for them. They'll also get a set of this year's christmas ornaments (little papier-mache houses). Also, bottles of their favorite hot sauce which they can now only get if they pay exorbitant shipping costs. They're fun to make things for, so they'll get a big box of stuff.

Niece (18mos) and nephew (3yrs): hand puppets, dress-up clothes, maybe a few other small toys good for imaginative play. Nephew loves purple, loves hats, and they live in sunny SoCal, so I'll sew him a purple sun hat.

Mom: I've embroidered a couple of her trademark phrases--"Bite Me," and "You Want What, Now?"--onto some leftover linen fabric in fancy Victorian lettering, and will make them into throw pillows. I used stenciling and applique to block in the lettering, so I didn't have to kill myself embroidering the whole megillah. The embroidery (plus some beads) is limited to the fancy details, so it wasn't an insanely ambitious project. For her 67th birthday a few years back, I made her a combined birthday/retirement present of a similar piece, framed, that said "Fuck Work." She loves it so much, and it's still the first thing you see when you walk in her house, so I figured the pillows will be a safe bet.

A few female friends will get beaded jewelry; I've made knitted and sewn hats for a couple of guys. One guy is getting a couple of quarts of jalapeno pickled carrots--he loves the carrot slices that come in cans of whole jalapenos, and expressed a longing for cans of just carrots (with maybe a couple of jalapenos), so he should be pretty darned pleased with that. Everyone else is getting Chinese food cartons full of homemade treats and/or homemade jam, and everyone I give a gift to gets a nice handwritten personal note.

somecobwebs

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #93 on: November 28, 2014, 06:33:41 PM »
No, No!  Not "home-made" - it is HAND CRAFTED!!  Reframe your language to reflect the work and skill that went into it.  And present it that way.

Heh, good point!! She will in fact be getting a hand-crafted present ;)

Worsted Skeins

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #94 on: November 29, 2014, 01:03:26 PM »
Hello everyone!

I have been listening to BBC Radio programs this afternoon while stitching and knitting.  Felt food for the preschool crowd is fast and fun.  I have made the bread and cheese from the website below; lettuce and tomato to follow:

http://www.myrtleandeunice.com/2009/11/you-must-be-starving-tutorial.html

Additionally I have knitted two pairs of mittens and am currently working on a more stylish pair of fingerless gloves. 

Last summer I preserved peach jam in small jars.  I think I'll add a small spent grain loaf to that (spent grains being a by product from my husband's homebrewing) as a gift to local friends.  My husband will probably be distributing homebrew as well.

SingleMomDebt

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #95 on: November 29, 2014, 02:52:43 PM »
I have been listening to BBC Radio programs this afternoon while stitching and knitting.  Felt food for the preschool crowd is fast and fun.  I have made the bread and cheese from the website below; lettuce and tomato to follow:

http://www.myrtleandeunice.com/2009/11/you-must-be-starving-tutorial.html

Ah Worsted Skeins! that is so cute!

This year is more group based than individual. Food gifting.

  • I've decided I want to make freezer casseroles for some of my friends. Who I believe will appreciate it during the busy holidays.
  • One friend loves when i make Fannie Farmer's Classic Baked Macaroni & Cheese. So I think I may handcraft a recipe card and gather together a small pasta basket to ship.
  • Coworkers, I am thinking I will bring in a big basket of wild blueberry strudel muffins to share with a pot of fresh coffee

Stacey

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #96 on: November 29, 2014, 03:29:57 PM »

Mom: I've embroidered a couple of her trademark phrases--"Bite Me," and "You Want What, Now?"--onto some leftover linen fabric in fancy Victorian lettering, and will make them into throw pillows. I used stenciling and applique to block in the lettering, so I didn't have to kill myself embroidering the whole megillah. The embroidery (plus some beads) is limited to the fancy details, so it wasn't an insanely ambitious project. For her 67th birthday a few years back, I made her a combined birthday/retirement present of a similar piece, framed, that said "Fuck Work." She loves it so much, and it's still the first thing you see when you walk in her house, so I figured the pillows will be a safe bet.

I LOVE this!  Such a great idea.  I'm in the middle of knitting my mom a new hat, but this is definitely an idea to file away for next year.  My mom has catch phrases that she didn't even notice until my son started repeating them soon after he started stringing words together.  "Get outta here."  "What a drag."  and her number one phrase - "This is too much."  All in her quintessential New Jersey accent.  These would be so great embroidered on a pillow or framed.  Thanks for the great idea.  I'm sure your mom is going to love the pillows. 

McGeens

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #97 on: December 18, 2014, 05:22:49 AM »
I gave the first of my handmade Christmas gifts today. To our lovely daycare lady, a beautifully wrapped fig and date Christmas cake and two sets of upcycled envelopes. These are a hit- make a stencil out of an envelope you already have, then choose interesting old books to cut up. For this set I used a vintage foreign language atlas and a vintage children's book with gorgeous illustrations. The envelopes are a fun and easy craft to do in spurts :-) excited to continue the 'make/bake/grow' gift theme.

aetherie

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #98 on: December 18, 2014, 10:09:58 AM »
Here are my knitted Christmas gifts for this year! Chair cover for my aunt (by request), Harry Potter socks for SO's sister (by request), and scarves for SO's stepdad and mom (surprises).

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Re: Homemade Christmas 2014 Edition!!
« Reply #99 on: December 18, 2014, 12:24:24 PM »
Awesome, everyone!

Haven't given any of my gifts yet - spent the last couple of days making "Family" gift tins to take to all of our various family and work gatherings. I got a little ambitious and made three double batches of jellies on a new stove (and discovering one element doesn't work and another holds heat really hot) but came our with Blueberry/huckleberry, black cherry and pomegranate pate de sucre. It made a ton - about 400+ pieces - and I have classy/pretty gifts for all the "casual" gifts we want to give.  Spent time and about 50.00 on ingredients and packaging - but given that they sell online for 45.00 for a package of 18...I think i came out ahead :)