the barefoot budget

unconventional grit for a mindful life

My Homemade Christmas Gifts


This year, I made all my Christmas gifts. It was something that sounded romantic at first, but man oh man was I busting my ass the last couple weeks, bagging tea, baking, tasting beers, and packing everything up.

We are trying to get away from wrapping paper, so this year I upcycled most of my packaging material. I took a big stack of boxes from a Dollar General, and cut them down to make little open top boxes. I wrapped these using Trader Joe’s holiday brown grocery bags, and accented using homemade name tags and gathered pine cones. The rest of the packaging material was bought cheap at the dollar store.

As you can see, our little gift baskets included: homebrewed beer, homemade candy (buckeyes!), pizzelle (Italian cookies I made using my late grandpa’s pizzelle press), tea tins with homegrown tea and tea cookies, and finally a jam or jelly. We made habanero pepper jelly using our own habaneros; apple butter using north Georgia mountain apples; and blackberry lavender jam using all the wild blackberries we foraged plus homegrown lavender.

The tea was the biggest hit, which surprised me! Above you can see a list of the five teas I made this year, with most of the ingredients grown and dried at our home.

Personally, I love tea, but I didn’t really think others would get that excited about it … turns out I was wrong! Everyone seemed really impressed and excited.

I thought the bags were too cute. I got the idea here. It was very simple – you spooned tea onto a square of cheesecloth, rolled it up, then tied it off with embroidery fabric.

The tea was so popular, I ended up packaging individual bags to giveaway to friends and coworkers.

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday filled with homemade memories!

6 thoughts on “My Homemade Christmas Gifts

  1. You are a superhero. We made half of them and I was exhausted. Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love it!! And your teas sound wonderful. I always do homemade food baskets for friends and family each year, and they are a lot of work. It’s a lot of planning to have enough for so many people! I definitely want to do a bit more indie shopping for people next year…this year was a bit small because of budgeting…but I do feel good about saving the money! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Honestly, the planning was the most exhausting part!! And packing everything up. Next year I want to try for more “healthy” foods. Do you mostly give baked goods?

      Indie shopping is where it’s at. I can’t believe I used to buy the majority of my gifts at places like Walmart! Definitely a balance though, you can run up a high tab pretty quick on Etsy – learned that the hard way 😉


      • It’s so true…love supporting indie shops but the prices add up quick! And generally I do stick to baked goods. This year I tried out homemade fudge which I’d never tried and it turned out great which is nice. I’ll usually include a mini loaf of a bread or two (go-tos are usually banana, zucchini, or spice).

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Blimey very impressed x TTS

    Liked by 1 person

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