Posts Tagged ‘gifting’

Several years ago I decided to make calendars for my friends and family for Christmas.  I wanted to use some the photos that I had taken through the year to make it.  Calendars make great gifts because everyone needs one and they can be thrown away after the year is through, thus not burdening the receiver with something they feel guilty about getting rid of someday.  I didn’t want to try to make the calendars myself because I wanted them to be really nice, and the proposition of making 10 calendars was kind of overwhelming.  Plus I’m a little limited with printing options.  

After some research I settled on Lulu.com for my printing, had them printed up, and gifted them to most of my friends and family.  They were a huge hit, and around the middle of November the next year people were asking if I was going to do it again so they knew whether to buy a calendar or not.  It became a tradition, something I now do every year.  It’s technically not a “handmade” or “homemade” per se, but I did take the photos, so it was kind of made by me.  I could try to make it myself, but it certainly wouldn’t be as nice as it is withe professional printing job. Lulu does a really fabulous job, the calendars always look really great!

I choose photos that were taken during that month so that they go with the seasons. Since I never print out any of my photos, it’s a great way to display them in my house as well. Another benefit of doing this, is that I make them available to my readers as well since many of them like the calendar too. This also helps me pay some of the bills associated with my personal blog and this blog. Here’s what my calendar looks like this year:

So don’t feel bad if your “handmade/homemade” gifts aren’t technically so. Use your gifts, whatever they may be, to make meaningful gifts for those you love. If you’ve never considered making a calendar I’d highly recommend it. You can order one or one hundred and they’re not that expensive. How much would a grandparent love getting a calendar filled with photos of their grandkids, especially if they live far away. Or perhaps you can have your children draw pictures and scan them in (this would be really great if you had them draw what they thought that month was like).

Do you make any gifts that people request year after year? Have you ever considered making a calendar for your holiday gifts?

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Originally published at Women Not Dabbling by emphelan

As I have stated in the past, I am not very good at all this domestic goddess type activities. I only do what I have to do, and the rest waits until company is about to come over. I watch other moms, you know the ones that seem so perfect and wonder how they do it. Home school, homestead and keep up the housework. I know that I don’t set a very good example to my boys. “clean your room, or. . .or. . . never mind I’ll do it.”

We don’t spring clean around here, we winter clean. Spring finds us outside working, eating a little and passing out where we stand. Winter cleaning is about to begin. This is the time we purge the items that well meaning folk give us. Things we have no use for. I have more sausage grinders than the local big box store. More vases than I have room for, more junk just to box up and store away until we have time for the country yard sale we have been talking about these past 6 years.

One thing I have discovered about the winter clean is that I actually prefer it to the spring clean. When the air is crisp, not bone biting cold, the windows are thrown open, and the winter air fills up the dusty house. It can be invigorating, though annoying to my little ones.

Winter cleaning can also cause us to “happen” upon something that can be gifted to someone else for the Holidays. I realize some people have a problem with that, but my family has become use to this. Some books that I purge go to my brother, kitchen items in good shape, that I really don’t use, goes to the budding cook known as my brother’s wife, and so on and so forth. It isn’t re-gifting exactly, it is more like we are the middle man for the items. I don’t see it any different than hitting up a junk treasure type store or a thrift store for purchases. My family knows that these gifts are thought out, and the right item to the right person. Besides, they get more use out of them, than I did.

The trick to being the middle man is that the items are in good shape, and cleaned before wrapping. That and not tattling on yourself after the gift has been opened. “Yep, that thing has been sitting around my house for years, thought I would be super frugal, i.e. cheap, and give it to you. It wasn’t good enough for me. . .” Keep all that to yourself, just smile and say I’m glad you like it. Re-gifting is also different in this middle man game. Re-gifting is when you get an item as a present, while the middle man holds the items that were never really meant for them. You find the perfect home for the item.

Or at least that’s what I tell myself.

Anyway you think about it, winter cleaning for your holiday gifts, helps you out in more than one way. Anyone like records?

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