Every December growing up, my mother would go into full-on “production mode”. She churned out dozens of loaves of homemade pumpkin bread, each wrapped in tin foil and tied with a ribbon – one for every teacher and school bus driver (for all six kids), each neighbor, and even the mailman. Now I have a husband who is a teacher bringing home loads of Starbucks gift cards (which he loves!), but the kids and I especially love it when he receives homemade goodies to eat with that coffee.
Homemade gifts are a welcome antidote to the materialism that can invade the modern holiday season. If you have kids and are making gifts for teachers, this is a great opportunity to get the kids helping – even young ones can make cards and help tie ribbons.
So, this year try handmade homemade gifts for your favorite teachers, bus drivers, mailmen, security guards, administrative assistants, colleagues, and elevator operators (yes we have elevator operators in our building and they are awesome!)
Here are our top five easy homemade gift recipes that are sure to bring a smile this holiday season:
1. Homemade Granola
This is what I give my kids’ teachers, and when I get a teacher that’s had one of my kids previously they’ll confess they were eagerly hoping for the granola again! It’s crazy easy – 5 ingredients and 5 minutes of effort – we gift it in mason jars tied with a bow. (get the recipe)
2. Cut-Out Cookies
A holiday classic. Over the years we’ve assembled a collection of nearly 100 different cookie cutters – and we have fun trying to find the perfect shape for each recipient. I recently got some in different yoga poses for cookies I’m going to gift to my favorite yoga teachers this holiday – Namaste! (get the recipe)
Consider topping with our Quick Buttercream Frosting (get the recipe)
5. Homemade Chai
I’ve been trying to “hack” my chai habit all fall with homemade versions, and I’ve finally got the perfect recipe. If you have a chai lover on your list, this makes a great gift (or you could package up the ingredients and recipe into a cute DIY chai kit!) Caution: depending where you buy them, some of these spices can be spendy… (get the recipe)
And as you make these recipes, double the batch to make a few extra. They’re great to have on-hand for last-minute hostess gifts or gift-swaps. Enjoy!