"And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed" (2 Corinthians 9:8).
Wondering how to beat today's tough economy to make Christmas special for your homeschool family and friends? Don't get discouraged. The best gifts aren't the expensive ones, but the ones made from the heart with loving hands. Take Christmas back to the basics this year with your God-given talents and these DIY gift ideas:
Love to cook?
If baking is your talent, make cookies, cakes, breads, candy, and other holiday treats. Arranged attractively on seasonal paper plates and covered with red or green plastic wrap and bows, baked goods make a welcome gift. Homemade jerky is also always a favorite treat for those who love meat.
Is sewing your thing?
Little ones will love getting their own sock monkey for Christmas. This fun-to-make gift for younger children is soft, washable, and great for hours of puppet fun.
As the cold winter winds begin to blow, no-sew fleece blankets are always a welcome gift. Fleece material comes in multiple colors, patterns, and themes, so you can personalize the perfect blanket.
Enjoy making crafts?
Recycle refrigerator magnets! Using double-stick tape, cover a magnet with Christmas designs, family photos, pet pictures, favorite team logos, inspirational quotes, or Bible verses. The magnets can often be cut to match your item's shape, and they can be covered with clear package tape to make them more durable and repel fingerprints.
Have old greetings cards from last Christmas? Make little gift boxes out of them and fill them with $5 gift certificates from popular coffee shops or fast food restaurants.
You can also make a family calendar that includes birthdays, anniversaries, and other significant events of your immediate and extended family members. A more personalized version of this idea could also include creative homemade coupons for each month.
Magic sand is always a fun gift idea. Using regular beach sand coated with fabric protector spray, homemade magic sand provides hours of creative play building castles and other structures under water due to its hydrophobic coating.
Additional craft ideas include homemade snow globes and cinnamon ornaments.
Try a movie-themed gift that includes a large plastic bowl, a DVD or two, microwave popcorn, and some candy. Decent movies can be purchased for $5 or less, and the remainder of the items are just a few dollars each.
Do you have chocolate lovers on your Christmas list? Purchase inexpensive mugs and fill them with homemade hot chocolate mix, a brownie-in-a-mug mix, or chocolate candy.
If you have plants or know someone else who does, think Christmas green and take plant cuttings and replant them in affordable containers.
Good with computers?
If your friends and family members are like most people, they'll welcome a gift certificate for free computer repairs.
Take some family photos on your computer and make a mountable collage using photo editing software. You can also make a sports collection with different logos and pictures from favorite sports teams and put them in an attractive 8 x 10 frame.
Homemade coloring books make great Christmas gifts for younger brothers and sisters. Free coloring sheets can be printed and compiled together from a variety of websites.
Remember, showing love doesn't have to expensive! Just use the talents God has given you and let the Creator show you how to be creative this Christmas.
Share your best homemade gift idea with other homeschoolers in the comment field below.