Let me ask the question--what does Christmas mean to you? There are many good answers: getting together with family & friends, beautiful music & lights, and of course we can't forget the real Reason for the Season. Perhaps it's my proximity to Ferguson (my mother actually grew up there), but this year I'm praying for some real Peace on Earth. What's not on my list? Shopping malls, lists of gifts to buy, hefty credit card bills come January.
Since we've moved back home to Missouri, we've participated in our church's Advent Conspiracy project and it's four principles: Worship Fully, Spend Less, Give More, and Love All. This video is several years old now and estimates are Americans will spend over $600 Billion to celebrate this year. That would surely rebuild all those stores and buildings that burned down in the riots.
This week I thought I'd focus the middle two, specifically how I can spend less at the stores and give more of myself with homemade gifts from the kitchen. BONUS: I can also give more quality time to my son if he helps me make memories along with the goodies. So here's just a few ideas.
It's the standby, by who doesn't love it. Can't bake? You can make Rice Crispy Treats or those birds nests with melted chocolate & Chow Mein noodles.
Pumpkin bread or banana bread. Here's a link to the persimmon bread I love to give.
The sad part is you can’t wrap up the wonderful smell of freshly baked bread, but I don’t think that will keep anyone from turning down the loaf or basket of rolls you offer.
Try making some peppermint bark with white chocolate. I’ll be trying a new peanut brittle recipe I found on Food Network.
Homemade Spice Blends
Got a secret recipe for a special BBQ rub—you don’t have to share the recipe, just bag it up. It’s all in the presentation…here’s a link to the Southwestern Dip mix we shared two Christmases ago.
Gifts in a Jar
Don’t want to do the baking yourself? You can layer cookie ingredients like sand art in mason jars—just be sure to include the directions and a list of perishable ingredients the recipient will need to add. Or maybe you can make up a Russian Tea or Hot Cocoa mix.
Not everything has to be eaten. I’ve found several recipes online for facial scrubs that use sugar as the main ingredient (always on sale during this prime baking season). Add a little extract or essential oil and voila!
Don't miss a thing! Subscribe to Ozark Ramblings and get my posts in your inbox.