Use these 6 easy homemade gift ideas to bond with your kids during the holiday season.
1. Make candles Adult Supervision Required!
2 saucepans (to make a double boiler)
Candlesticks (one for each jar)
Wide glass jars
1. Set up a double boiler to melt the paraffin by filling the bottom
saucepan with 4 to 5 inches of water. Then pack chunks of paraffin into
the top saucepan. Always make sure that the saucepan containing the
wax never directly touches the open flame.
2. Melt the wax over medium-high heat, adding more chunks of paraffin
until the saucepan is about two-thirds filled. To color the melted wax,
break half of a peeled crayon into pieces and add them to the wax. Mix
with a paint stirrer. Turn off the heat and let the paraffin cool for about
3. Using a sharp knife, cut the candlesticks 1/2 inch shorter than the jar
heights. Now, heat the jars by running warm water on the outsides but
not the insides. This helps prevent cracking when the wax is poured into
4. With metal tongs, dip the bottom of each candlestick into the melted
wax and stick it to the inner jar bottom. When the candlestick ends have
hardened enough to hold, carefully pour enough wax into the jars to
cover the candlestick tops but not the wicks.
5. Once the candles cool, your kids can tie festive ribbon around the
jars and give them to friends and family.
2. Make a unique "candy dish"
12-inch Styrofoam cone
Can of non-toxic green spray paint
Pointed wooden skewer
2 bags of Red, Green and Gold foil-wrapped NESTLÉ® Jingles
1. First, spray the Styrofoam cone green.
2. Insert and remove a wooden skewer into the bottom of each NESTLÉ®
Jingle to create an easy opening for inserting toothpicks. ?
3. Through the bottom, insert a toothpick into the center of each
4. Starting at the bottom of the cone, begin placing the NESTLÉ® Jingles
around the cone by inserting the exposed end of the toothpick into the
5. Complete several rows of green foil wrapped NESTLÉ® Jingles, then
begin to add red foil wrapped NESTLÉ® Jingles sporadically to simulate
6. Continue up the cone until complete. Place a holiday bow at the top of
the tree, if desired.
3. Make homemade ornaments
Decorative craft scissors (optional)
1. Cut a 4 1/2- by 10 1/2-inch rectangle of gift wrap. Fold the
paper accordion-style, making the pleats 1/2 inch wide.
2. Once all of the paper is folded, staple the paper across the center.
Then, bring together the ends on each side of the staple, taping them on
the unprinted sides.
3. Use a pushpin to poke a hole through the tape at the top of the
ornament. Place a 10-inch length of monofilament through it and then
tie to form a loop for hanging.
4. Create a recipe or candy jar
Almost everybody loves sweets around the holidays. Invite your child to choose his or her favorite holiday cookie. Together, gather the ingredients and layer them in a festive jar. Tie a pretty ribbon around it, and your child has an easy, thoughtful gift to offer family members.
You can also bake your child's favorite holiday treats. Just wrap them in festively colored cellophane and give them as gifts. Try our easy Marshmallow Pops recipe to get started.
Hint: If you don't have a lot of time to bake this season, filling a glass jar with red, green and gold NESTLÉ® Jingles make a great gift for someone special.
5. Write a poem
Roses are red, violets are blue, anyone can write a poem, but can you? Poems are easy to write if you just have a little bit of time and imagination. Sit with your child and brainstorm ideas for a holiday poem. We'll help you get started:
Easy: Try writing an acrostic poem. Ask your child to choose a word, such as holiday, and write it vertically. Each letter will begin another word that describes the holiday.
H appy faces in our house
O ffer presents to everyone
L ove is all around
I cicles hang from the roof
D ad lights the fire
A ll the beautiful decorations
Y es, it's the holidays
Intermediate: Try writing a diamante poem. The text forms the shape of a diamond. Ask your child to choose a word, such as winter. Line 1 contains one noun or subject, line 2 contains two adjectives that describe line 1, line 3 contains three -ing words that describe line 1, line 4 contains four nouns - the first two are connected with line 1; the last two are connected with line 7, line 5 contains three -ing words that describe line 7, line 6 contains two adjectives that describe line 7, and line 7 contains one noun antonym for the subject.
Challenging: Try writing a shape poem. Ask your child to choose a word, such as snowman. Then, make a simple outline of that shape or object. Next, brainstorm a minimum of ten words and phrases that describe that word. Be sure you place those words in the shape of your object.
6. Spread the holiday cheer
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Instead of throwing away last year's toys to make room for the new ones, donate them to those who are less fortunate. Sit together and sort the toys your child has outgrown. Explain to your child that he will be helping other kids just like him.