Small Pocket Wallet
Do you know someone who never carries a purse, complains their wallet is too heavy or who likes to throw some money and credit cards in their pocket and head out the door. If so, one of these fabric credit card holders would be perfect for them, lightweight and small enough to fit in a pocket. They come with the option of two or four pockets and they are perfect for a stocking stuffer or to mail. Shop here: Two Pocket & Four Pocket.
Tomorrow is our last day of the series and we are featuring a local family run small business so make sure you come back to find out who it is!
Is there a teenager in your life that has just started driving or is about too? A roadside emergency kit would be the perfect gift for them. Its keeps them safe and makes you feel better about them driving. Search Amazon, Google or shop local retailers and your sure to find what your looking for.
Day 6 tomorrow, don't forget to stop and see what it says!
Handmade Kitchen Linens
Do you know someone who loves to cook? Do they use cast iron skillets or often put their frying pan in the oven. These little skillet handle covers make a great gift or stocking stuffer! Check them out here.
A few other great gift idea for the chef or cook in your life is a reversible potholder/trivets. Handmade and machine quilted. Click here to shop now. Or a microwave potato bag, sold here.
See you tomorrow for day 5!
A movie night out or a movie night in, this gift basket is sure to please anyone from a dating couple, teenagers to a family of four or more! There are several ways to accomplish this fun gift.
Movie Night In: Purchase a popcorn bowl, gourmet popcorn, movie sized boxes of candy and include a gift card for a rental or movie purchase. For gourmet popcorn from a family run business visit Dell Cove Spices. Include a personalized popcorn bowl like the one above from EarthlyChic.
Movie Night Out: Package a theater gift card, restaurant gift card and some candy together in a cute little bag or box! Perfect for the one the go family or couple.
Stop by tomorrow to see what's in store for day four!
I love to give my stepsons a Christmas ornament each year, chosen just for them. It’s a fun way to make memories and it also means they will each of a small collection of ornaments to take with them when they move into their own place.
You can find Christmas ornaments as unique as the person your giving it to. From themed to personalized, Etsy has it all.
The ornaments pictured here come from these two shops on Etsy: Kute Kustom Kreations and Roz Petalz Studio.
See you on Thanksgiving for day three in The ART of GIVING!
Life has seemed to take off and I have just simply not had time to write any blog posts and now we are deep into the holidays with Thanksgiving upon us and Christmas shopping. I just finished with my final craft fair of the year and now I seem to have a little bit of time on my hands and started thinking about Christmas the art of giving and how it makes someone feel when you come up with perfect gift to give them. I have compiled some ideas and will be sharing them over the next seven days. Since we have Black Friday and Cyber Monday coming up, now is the perfect time to share them with you. Maybe I will come up with some more ideas after the first seven days. We shall see. Here is today's to kick start the series!
Mason Jar Tumbler
These Mason jar tumblers make the perfect vessel for a gift full of surprises. They boast a handmade reversible mason jar cozy and a silicone lid to drink from. Coffee, tea and water all taste better if served in glass! Fill it with candy, gift cards, nail polish, and packages of peanuts, tea, coffee and more, to give a gift as unique as the person you are giving it too. (CLICK HERE TO SHOP)
Look for our next gift idea tomorrow and for the next seven days. Do you have an Idea I should feature or want to share? Go ahead a post a comment! Until tomorrow!
Christmas can be a very expensive time of year. There are so many things to purchase: gifts, wrapping paper, gift tags, tape, tissue paper and many other things. These thoughts take me back to my childhood and memories of how my Mom did such a great job of keeping to her budget. How did she do it? One idea stands out from the others. Its something we did all through my childhood, we made our gift tags from construction paper, a cookies cutter and a pair of scissors. I am not sure why I stopped this tradition, maybe it was time or the store bought tags just look so cute on shelf I couldn’t resist buying them.
Making your own gift tags not only saves you money, but it also adds a special touch to your Christmas gifts. It shows you took time to wrap and label your gifts for all your family and friends, and that it’s important to you to give them something special on Christmas.
The wonderful thing about cookie cutter gift tags is that most of you will already have all the supplies you need right at home. So take a look around and see if you can find what you need without spending a single dime.
Step One: Choose your paper and your cookie cutter
Step Two: Trace the cookie cutter shape on the paper, going around the outside of the cookie cutter. (I would do this on the backside of your paper so your pencil marks don’t show on the front. I forgot to do this when creating my sample)
Step Three: Cut out your shape
Step Four: Write To: and From: where ever you desire on your gift tag. It can be on the front or back. Leave blank to fill in later when you are wrapping your presents or for your family to use when they wrap their presents.
Step Five: (Optional) Punch a hole in the center at the top, add twine or ribbon
See, how simple that is, really easy and they turn out beautiful. So additional ideas would be to decorate your tags even further with Christmas stickers, crayons, felt pens, glitter or ribbon. You can make this project as creative or simple as you like.
If you are not one to make your gift tags you can visit Etsy or Zazzle to purchase gift tags already made for you. You can download gift tags like these to print at home on Etsy.
I really hope you enjoy your holiday season. I will see you after Christmas!
Recently, my sister, my mom and myself went on a pre-Christmas outing to a local nursery that fills their gift shop with all kinds of holiday finds, from ornaments to poinsettias, holiday dishes and decorations galore! Of course anytime I visit a venue like this I look around and see many decorations I would love to have in my home, but can I afford them all? No way!
The result of not being able to afford everything that I see, is this mantra “I can make that!” I have said this to my sister so many times it’s become a joke between us. She often says to me before we head out for a day of shopping in a small town “Please don’t tell me that you can make everything I see!” But then of course I have to say it even more just to make her laugh!
Truth be told though, there are quite a few things you will see for sale this holiday season that you can make yourself. The question is, do you want to? Do you have the time to do so and do you know how to accomplish the task?
That’s what I am here for, the know-how! This garland was inspired by our recent outing. I saw some garland that was made out of wooden snowflakes, twine and rusty silver bells and said to myself, “This is truly something I can make at home very easily” and “why not share the steps with my faithful readers”.
The garland you see here can be modified to look however you feel would be best for your home, you can leave off any addition you see here that you feel doesn’t fit with your home or skill level.
Step One: Measure the area you want to hang your garland, then add 1 -2 feet depending on how much you want it to swoop when you hang it.
Step Two: Plan out the pattern and spacing of your garland. Layout your twine cut to the appropriate length. Then set your decorations (which ever you choose to use) out along the twine deciding on the spacing and pattern you think looks best.
Step Three: If using wood rounds you can paint them or draw on them. To produce what is seen above: Paint them with the chalk board paint, let dry and then decorate with the white gel pen. Drill holes in the wood rounds large enough to accommodate the twine.
Step Four: Starting at one end of the twine, following your pattern, tie your decorations onto the twine in the correct spacing as planned in step two.
Once you have done this for the length of your twine you are ready to hang it!
See how simple that was, all it took was a trip the craft store and some time at home planning the look of your garland. You have just created something that would sell for about forty-five dollars in a high end boutique. These supplies are much more affordable and you also get the satisfaction of knowing you created it yourself.
This is my favorite time of year! Thanksgiving and Christmas! Keep your eyes open for more holiday tips and tricks to come! I love decorating for these holidays and creating new decorations every year!
What has Christmas become in your home? Is it all about what you can get instead of give? What do your children think Christmas is all about? I have really been thinking a lot about this lately. I am not perfect in this area, so please don’t feel like I have got it all together. I mean I already have a list on my fridge of gifts that people can get me!
The truth is Christmas in not about getting, it’s about giving! So, what if the perfect gift could also give back to someone one in need? What if it could support a family in a third world country, save someone from sex trafficking, support a village in need, provide clean water, help a single mom or the family next door.
I am making it my goal this year to have my gifts help others. It may not be possible for each and every gift I give to do this, but I know it’s possible for some of them to help others.
I want Christmas to mean something more than just getting. I want it to be about serving, sacrificing, loving and caring about others. I want my gifts to say, I thought of you when I saw this and I wanted to support someone in need.
In the hopes that you will join me in this endeavor this year I have complied a list of places where yo can purchase gifts that give. I have included each organizations mission statement or description as found on their website. Please understand that I have just skimmed through their websites to see what their mission statements say. Please do your own research and make sure you fully support the organizations goals before purchasing.
Prodigal Pottery, www.etsy.com/shop/prodigalpottery
Prodigal Pottery started from the dream to create jobs for women fleeing homelessness and domestic abuse in a safe and therapeutic environment. Kings Home is home and safe haven to over 50 women who are seeking hope and restoration from pasts riddled with abuse and homelessness.
Mudlove Pottery, www.mudlove.com
Through our partnership with Water for Good, every product you purchase provides one week of clean water to someone in need. The Central African Republic is a country in desperate need of hope, love, and basic necessities. Access to safe, clean water has the power to transform communities and save lives.
Mercy Jewelry, www.etsy.com/shop/mercyjewelry
M.E.R.CY Jewelry is a ministry that exists to provide the women a life with dignity. Through this ministry, they hear about Christ's love and His healing
Threads worldwide, www.threadsworldwide.com
Creating life-changing work for women around the world through the fair trade of artisan jewelry.
Love Sees Collection, www.etsy.com/shop/loveseescollection
Love Sees Sterling Silver and Gold Vermeil Jewelry with Love Phrases! The Gift that Gives Back. 10% of proceeds donated to teen suicide prevention and awareness.
Bead for life, www.beadforlife.com
Creating sustainable opportunities for women to lift their families out of poverty by connecting people worldwide in a circle of exchange that enriches everyone.
Feathers & Grace, www.etsy.com/shop/feathersandgrace
We have a profound & beautiful purpose here at Feathers & Grace: To Celebrate, Encourage, Love, and Cherish every beautiful life! With every purchase, you are helping make a beautiful difference in the lives of children and families around the world!
Live Love Studio, www.etsy.com/shop/livelovestudio
We have a big passion to spread goodness to the world in a tangible way. With each purchase, you are providing ONE MEAL to a hungry tummy in East Tennessee Appalachia, through the efforts of Second Harvest Food Bank.
Purpose Jewelry, http://www.purposejewelry.org
Purpose jewelry is handcrafted by survivors of modern-day slavery. 100% of the proceeds benefit International Sanctuary, a non-profit that provides holistic care for young women rescued from sex trafficking.
Mercy INK, www.etsy.com/shop/mercyink
Mercy INK is happy to support the ministry of Restore Elikia, a non-profit in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Ten Thousand Village, www.tenthousandvilaages.com
Every purchase improves the lives of makers by supporting their craft and providing a fair, stable income.
Gifts With Humanity, www.giftswithhumanity.com
Gifts With Humanity is a brand of Global Crafts. Our mission is to offer income-generating opportunities to craftspeople in developing countries by following fair trade practices including paying in advance at least the market price for items, ensuring that craftspeople receive payment, and ensuring that the craftspeople work in fair working conditions. We work directly with artisans, craftspeople, and producer groups to achieve these goals and hopefully help improve the lives of some of the people with whom we share this planet.
Cross Culture Market, www.crossculturemarket.org
Cross Culture Market buys hand-made crafts from native artisans through Christian missionaries and humanitarian organizations. We sell these unique products in our store and online at www.crossculturemarket.org. You can find jewelry, home decor, purses, body products, holiday decorations, stationery, gourmet foods and other gifts made in every corner of the globe on our shelves!
Serrv is a nonprofit organization with a mission to eradicate poverty wherever it resides by providing opportunity and support to artisans and farmers worldwide.
Earth Divas, www.earthdivas.com
Earth Divas, a fair trade company that is 100% focused on providing women in the developing world opportunities to earn a decent wage. We are unlike most businesses in that we exist not to make a profit. Our goal is to pay artisans as much as we can, and if we do show a profit, we give 100% of it to the artisans.
My own Etsy site, www.bethannerickson.etsy.com has a handful of hand beaded snowflake Christmas ornaments, three dollars from each ornament will go to Women of Purpose, Camano Island Chapter, who help bring life, hope and opportunity to women and children in developing countries. Currently this group supports a village in Southeast Asia. Through their financial support, the village of Thongkouang will be transformed into a thriving, self-sufficient community with healthy, safe, educated children. Women of Purpose also supports child protection work in Asia. Both of these programs help to prevent the human trafficking of women and children.
This list just scratches the surface. There are many more places you can purchase gifts that give. A simple google search will give you places to shop right at your fingertips. If you purchase from one of the organizations listed here, please mention you read about them on my blog! Happy Christmas shopping! "He is the reason for the season!"
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Yes, I know, Thanksgiving has not even been celebrated yet! But if you don't start thinking about Christmas gifts now, the next thing you know it will be December and you will be running out of time. You will really be out of time if you want to give handmade gifts. So, even though it’s early, let’s get started! Who knows, maybe you will have all your gifts done before Thanksgiving and you can just look forward to enjoying the hustle and the bustle of the holiday season without the stress of shopping at the busiest time of the year!
I know I always say I am going to start early this year and then it never happens. Well, I am hoping to change that this year and I hope this list of creative gift ideas will help you change that too! Some of these items will be things you can make yourself and some of them will be beautiful finds on Etsy! I love finding a few of my gifts each year on Etsy (www.etsy.com), because I truly believe that Etsy provides an avenue to find a gift the perfectly fits the person you are giving it too. Etsy may not have something for every single person in your life, but I do believe you can find at least one of your gifts there and also enjoy the idea of shopping small and supporting those who pour their time and energy into making something unique. I challenge you to find at least one gift on Etsy this year for someone special in your life. Okay, back to the list!
Handmade note cards: Make them yourself with wonderful instant downloads from Etsy or purchase completed notecards. A few of my favorite Etsy shops for purchasing completed cards are: CreationsKMP (www.etsy.com/shop/creationsKMP), HeartsEase2 (www.etsy.com/shop/HeartsEase2), or BlueVioletSentiment (www.etsy.com/shop/BlueVioletSentiments). To purchase instant downloads to create your own notecards try these stores: pointandpoem (www.etsy.com/shop/pointandpoem) or dariakonik (www.etsy.com/shop/dariakonik). These are just a few of the shops I found on Etsy that supply clipart or notecards, there are many more to be discovered.
Mason Jar Gifts: Mason jars can be used in a variety of ways at Christmas for gifts. A few ideas that come to mind are, cookie mix, hot cocoa mix, quick bread mix, an assortment of favorite candy or nuts, beauty products, art supplies and much more. Decorate your mason jar with one of these free mason jar wraps (Download here, 10 inch or 14 inch) or purchase a mason jar wrap from my Etsy store (www.bethannerickson.etsy.com). My mason jar wraps come in 10 inches or 14 inches, to print the larger size you need to have access to a printer that prints on 11x17 paper.
Unique Jewelry & Engraved Items: Etsy is home to many talented jewelry artists. Shop for beaded earrings, beach glass pendants, engraved sterling bracelets, key chains and everything in between. You are certain to find the perfect piece for the special person in your life. Visit some of these shops to see if they meet your needs: BethAnnErickson (www.bethannerickson.etsy.com), TimArtCreations (www.etsy.com/shop/TimArtCreations) or sweetstonesjewelry (www.etsy.com/shop/sweetstonesjewelry).
Crochet a Scarf: A soft warm scarf is the perfect winter gift and even better if you make it yourself. Don't know how to crochet? Did you know that www.youtube.com has instructional videos for beginners just like yourself . We are heading into the season where you will find yarn on sale at Michaels, Hobby Lobby and other craft stores, making this gift idea very affordable. So why not pick up some yarn today and try out a beginner’s video. I watched this video myself and found it very easy to follow. (Beginners Crochet Project) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gx6oEOxOekI)
Baked Goods: We all spend time in the kitchen at the holidays, cooking and baking so we usually have the supplies we need on hand. Why not put some of that time baking to use finishing up your holiday gifts. Holiday tins are easy to find this time of year at Walmart, Fred Meyer and any craft store, along with holiday themed parchment paper. A few supplies and some time in the kitchen and you have some tasty holiday gifts that are sure to please. They are perfect for that one person in your life who is difficult to figure out what to give.
Some other affordable gift ideas are homemade candles, hand-painted kitchen utensils or a handmade Christmas tree decoration. I am sure I could come up with many more ideas for you, but I think this list will get you started. Etsy is a great resource for handmade gifts if you don’t have the time or inclination to make them yourself.
If you have an idea but are not sure how to accomplish it feel free to contact me and I will see if I can help. Good luck with your Christmas shopping!
Make sure to stop by my Etsy store, www.bethannerickson.etsy.com or my Zazzle store, www.zazzle.com/EricksonDesigns to see what other wonderful items we have for sale!