Thursday, December 22, 2011

Last Minute handmade gift ideas

I often find myself making last minute gifts during the holidays - they are perfect for those friends who have everything and are nice to have around in case there are any unexpected guests during the holidays! Here is what I did this year:

1) Flavored liquors make for pretty gifts when packaged in corked bottles! You can get the recipes for these on my blog here. There is still time to make the Chai Whisky which only needs 24 hours to infuse! I used frosted glass cosmetic bottles that I had left over from some R&D but you can find Cork top bottles at most craft stores. Mason jars would also be lovely for packaging. You can make up sticker labels, or a raffia tie with a tag and the name of the infusion would be perfect too!

2) Handmade chocolates are always a hit! Get some nut and dried fruit trail mix and add to melted chocolate to make fruit and nut bars. Trader Joe's Omega Trail mix works well! Wrap in tin paper and a cigar band label or tag label.Good quality chocolate can be found at most health food and natural food stores or get melting chocolate from the your local craft store.  
how to to temper chocolate

For chocolate clusters get some raw nuts, candy them (great recipe here), and then dip the nuts into chocolate and spoon onto parchment paper until set! I made some yummy ones with white chocolate, candied almonds and freeze dried blueberries from Trader Joes! They go great with a blueberry vodka spritzer! (wink)
3) You can NEVER go wrong with homemade marshmallows! I used an easy recipe from the NPR website and the book "Make the Bread Buy the Butter". I added some cardamom to mine, or you can add a tablespoon or two of cocoa powder for chocolate marshmallows or even some peppermint extract! Bags can be found at your local craft store.


  1. You don't sleep much, do you? I am always in awe of you. Your generosity and sheer joy in life. I love looking at pictures of your work and of you. You're happiness in life shines. I know you're not some giddy little puppy and I know life is not always happy for everyone, but you bring me joy. I want you to know that today. We never share stuff like this cause it makes us sound like...stalkers. But with four special needs kids, I don't have the time to stalk. :) 

  2. Wow, great ideas! Love the idea of Cardamom Vanilla Marshmallows, it seems so grown up! =)

  3. Thanks! The marshmallows sure are yummy!

  4. Thank you so much for the kind words Nancy - I actually try to get 8-9 hours a night! :) Glad to hear you enjoy what I do so much!



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