Source: Sherman Publications

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Gift giving while thrifty

by Andrea Beaudoin

December 18, 2013

Creating handmade and thrifty Christmas gifts can remove the stress of the holiday season. The Clarkston News found a few ideas anyone will appreciate from family members and friends to coworkers.

Scented Scrubs mason jars can be picked up by the dozen, and on the cheap. Mason jars are also handy because they can be used to create many gifts this holiday season. The nifty gift requires is a mix of salt or sugar, a scented fragrance and a dab of food coloring.

Dollar stores have inexpensive and decorative jars or spend a few extra bucks to get a fancy jar. Wrap a decorative ribbon around the mouth of the jar and you have wonderful Christmas gift for special someone!

Choose any color of food coloring just to add a dab and give the scrub a bit of color.

Bath Scrub Recipe: to begin mix salt or sugar with a moisturizing oil like almond or olive oil in a bowl. To make sure the mix will not dry out add enough oil in the mixture. This will make it moist and spread on skin easily. Then, mix together oil and salt or sugar. You can also add a dab or two or your choice of food coloring for color.

Find a little scooper to attach to the side of the jar or just grab a body loofah and attach to the gift.

Hot Chocolate Fun: a snowman made from baby food jars. Start with three sanitized jars of empty baby food glass containers. Fill top jar with marshmallows, middle with hot chocolate mix, and bottom with peppermint candies or small candy canes. Decorate the snowman with paper buttons and a a piece of clothing around the top for a scarf, and use glue to make the jars stick together.

Cookie Fun: Begin by filling a mason jar with cookie or brownie mix. Take a sanitized medium or large mason jar, mix teaspoon together 1 cups all purpose flour, 1 teaspoon of baking powder, 1 teaspoon of salt, 2/3 cups of unsweetened cocoa powder, 2 white sugar, cup of your favorite nuts or chocolate chips. Add together in a jar and layer to provide and interesting look. Attach a "Merry Christmas" tag with baking instructions. A bow on top adds a little decoration, if you please.

Tins of goodies: pick up a few tins at the dollar store and fill with cookie or baking mix. Hold an all day bake session and fill the tins with all kinds of cookies. Place a few chocolates in with the cooled cookies and place a bow on top.

For your significant other, create a coupon book with "coupons" with fun activities for both to enjoy.