Creative Gifts that won't break the bank

Around this time of year many of us are thinking about our "Christmas Lists". As we grow up our lists change morph a five page list of outlandish gifts we want santa to bring to a list of gifts for our families, friends, co-workers, kids teachers, mailman, cleaning lady...the list goes on. Growing up with 8 siblings and huge family Christmases I've picked up a few creative and memorable gift ideas that won't break the bank.

  1. East or west - homemade is best! For the past few years I've made several kinds of fudge and Christmas cookies! They're always a hit and if you double or triple the recipes they can stretch a long ways!
  2. Annual Christmas ornaments. My Great-Gramma, Nanan, hand-painted a beautiful ceramic ornament for each of her children, grand-children, and great-grandchildren every year since we were born. I love pulling out my little box of ornaments I've received from her since I was a baby and will always treasure them!
  3. Magazine Subscriptions. Theses days there are an amazing selection of magazines available to fit every lifestyle and what a great treat to receive a little present each month of the year! Cooking, travel, running, parenting, fashion, business, knitting, gardening - the list goes on!
  4. Classic books. One year instead of buying toys that would probably be played with for 15min then shoved to the back of the closet I bought each person on my list a good book. Even the hardbacks were under $10 each.
  5. Framed memories. Print out some family photos (new or old) and frame them in cute frames found at garage sales or Goodwill that you can sand and paint. A picture is worth a thousand words.
  6. Draw for names. If you have a large group of people that usually buy gifts for each other, suggest to draw names. You can also put a $ limit on the gifts so one person doesn't leave with a $5 starbucks giftcard and one with a diamond necklace :-).

In the end, your thoughtfulness and kindness will be remembered far beyond the actual gift!