The holidays are always a difficult time to watch your budget. You want to spend your hard-earned money on your family and friends, without having to worry about your budget. Here are twenty ideas for under $15 to get you started.
1. $5 popcorn tin (Big Lots, Kmart, Dollar General generally carry these large tubs for only $5), hot chocolate mix (homemade or store-bought) $2, DVD from sale rack $5. Total: $12
2. Homemade pumpkin-apple butter (visit Libby?'s pumpkin website for recipe) $2, fresh bread or bread-mix for a bread machine $1, wooden cutting board from Dollar Store $1. Total: $4
3. Picture frame(s) from Dollar Store $1, photo album also from Dollar Store or sale bin in department store $1-2, photo of child(ren)/family $5. Total: $8
4. Large mixing bowl $1.50, pancake mix $2, pretty wooden spoon $1. Total: $4.50
5. Colander $2, dry pasta (penne, etc.) $3, homemade dry spaghetti mix (search www.recipezaar.com for many recipes for this) $.50, tomato paste $1. Total: $6.50
6. For the kiddies: colorful bucket $1, crayons $1, coloring books $2, chalk or markers $1. Total: $5
7. Nice basket $4, homemade baked goods (cookies, brownies, candy, etc.) $3, homemade swirl ornament tied to the basket?'s handle $1 (find instructions at: ). Total: $8
8. Handmade decoupage candle holder: small or medium terra-cotta pot, saucer $2, decoupage medium $5, beautiful patterned tissue paper $2, pillar candle $1. Put into a basket $1, with a candle-lighter $1 and potpourri $1. Total: $13
9. Purchase a Christmas bucket with lid set Big Lots or Walmart $2 for a pack of two, fill with store-bought Christmas Tree or snowman snack-cakes $3 for a treat to give to your mailman, teachers, etc. Total: $5-10, depending on how many buckets you?'re making to give away.
10. Tin bucket $5, work gloves $4, handwarmers (from outdoor or hunting stores) $1, beef jerky $2, warm toboggan $3.For the hunter or outdoorsmen in your family. Total: $15
11. Dog or cat food bowl (a large one) $1 from Dollar Store, dog or cat treats $4, catnip toy or doggy bones $3. Total: $8
12. Wire or wood desktop file holder $5 from discount office store, 3 packs of floral or plain file folders $1 each at Dollar Store, packs of to-do list pads $2 each at Dollar Store, package of pens or pencils $1. Total: $11
13. Discount magazine subscription to the recipient?'s fave magazine $12. Search online for subscription discounts or the magazine?'s website for special deals.
14. Work or school lunch-bag $5, filled with homemade granola or trail mix (search food network website for good recipes) $1, dried fruits (apples, bananas) $3, graham crackers $1. Total: $10
15. Blank scrapbook $1 from Dollar Store or $5 from discount store, variety of scrapbook papers $3, stickers $2. Total: $10
16. For kiddies: Buy a $10 gift card from your local Dollar Store or other discount store. Older kids will be thrilled to have their own gift card so they can buy whatever they want. It?'s a quick and cheap alternative to pricier toys or computer games.
17. For a hostess gift: Purchase a hurricane vase or a plain glass bowl and fill with different colored glass Christmas ornaments. Place inside a gift box and tie a festive ribbon around it. Total: $8
18. Budget bottle of wine $10, quirky bottle stopper $5. Total: $15
19. Purse from discount store or sale rack at department store $8, coin purse or wallet $4, make-up bag to fit purse $1. Total: $13
20. Nice tray for dresser-top $5, masculine or feminine design according to recipient, small bowls for holding change, jewelry, etc. $3, comb or hair-brush $1. Total: $9
Hopefully these ideas have inspired you to create your own thoughtful homemade gift ideas for the special people on your Christmas list. Use these Christmas gift ideas, choose your own or get inspired to create your own gift baskets, homemade gifts and more.
With a little planning, you can have a frugal Christmas and still enjoy the joy of the season.