Fa La Don’t Forget on Your List

This time of year, there always seems to that one person you didn’t mean to forget, but did or who doesn’t quite fit into your holiday budget….classmates for the kids, teachers, Sunday school and church staff, and other service industry workers whose skills you rely on year after year. How do you get it all covered?

Oriental Trading Company has tons of craft and gift supplies that are sold individually and in bulk for less than the local craft stores. I have had to change orders and make returns and they have always been quick, helpful, and polite – which goes a long way in my book.

Believe it or not, the dollar store has come a long way in the last ten years. You can easily put together something thoughtful on the cheap. I find it easiest to go in with a theme in mind.

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Try infused oils (soooo simple), enhanced sugars (also easy), or flavored salt in a cute jar.
Infusing an oil: Add clean herb, chili, or spice to half of desire amount of oil. This is usually done with a flavorless oil or EVOO. In a heavy saucepan, warm over medium heat, taking care not to reach smoke point. Allow to cool to room temperature. (Be aware doing this with garlic can run the chance of food borne illness.) Strain the oil and store in airtight container with the reserved oil. It should keep for 1-2 months in the refrigerator, the lesser if you use EVOO.
Flavoring Salt or Sugar: place 1/3 amount of desired salt or sugar in basin of a food processor with chosen herb/spice and pulse until well combined. Add to other 2/3 and mix until blended. Spread sugar/salt onto cookie sheet and allow to air dry for a couple of hours before storing in an airtight container.

Hunt up the dollar bins at Target (they had Crayola bathtub paints, cute coordinating stationery and insulated straw cups last time is was in)

Check out Walmart…I know, I know, but they are reliably cheap and we all end up there at one time or another. They had Play-Doh for $.50 the other day, so we are trying this adorable idea
Get a little crafty…Pinterest has some great gift ideas that even this craft challenged mom didn’t fail at. Remember, it’s about the thoughtfulness – you remembering someone at the holidays – not the what you got them.

Cheap Finds on the Toy Aisle:
I’m not responsible if your particular store doesn’t have the prices shown, these merely ideas I’m sharing

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