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A Christmas present all wrapped up.

20 Weeks Until ChristmasI was shocked to see the first of the Christmas goods appearing in some of the stores in recent days. I suppose it is because I am from the generations for whom Christmas didn't appear on the horizon until the days became noticeably shorter and colder and the teachers broke out the glitter and glue.


VIntage jewelry tree made by aunt.

Costume Jewelry Christmas TreeI make costume jewelry Christmas trees as gifts for family. This one on black background was given to me 30 years ago and made by my 86 year old aunt. It is one of the most loved things in my home.


Closeup of completed star

Button Star OrnamentThis craft can be made using collected buttons left over from old clothes to make a star to decorate your Christmas tree. I used wire from an old transformer, so this project cost almost nothing. You can use any other color of buttons.


A collection of handmade food gifts.

Handmade/Homemade GiftsChoosing the perfect gift for each person on our list means paying attention throughout the year and taking note of preferences. This is particularly true when making gifts.


Mini Gumball Machine Christmas Ornament - two completed ornaments, one with pom poms and one with plastic beads

Mini Gumball Machine Christmas OrnamentI saw this idea at a craft boutique and since I had the supplies to make one, I made my own version.


Propagating Plants Inside a Christmas Ornament Bulb - finished project

Propagating Plants Inside a Christmas Ornament BulbMake these cute and inexpensive ornament bulb propagation planters to give as gifts or simply to decorate your desk, bathroom, or home.


Cookies baking in the oven.

Stress Free Holiday BakingI am in my 60s, and have been baking since I can remember. Every holiday season, I churn out many dozens of cookies for gifts for neighbors, friends and relatives. People ask for certain types every year.


Colorful Paper Mini Table Top Christmas Tree - 4 colorful trees in front of a snowy backdrop

Colorful Paper Mini Table Top Christmas TreeThis cute pine trees are simple but adorable. I love making them in variety of colors. My plan is to put these under my Christmas tree which I plan to install in a few days.


Light Bulb Grinch Ornament - Grinch light bulb ornament

DIY Light Bulb Grinch OrnamentI made this Grinch ornament from a burnt out light bulb. All you need is acrylic paint, some red and white fabric, and some hot glue. No sewing is necessary. Tie on some ribbon and hang it on the tree. I think he's pretty cute!


Making Winter Scarf Covered Wreaths

Making Winter Scarf Covered WreathsThis simple and very easy DIY consists of a wreath and a winter scarf. This project is no sew, no glue. You just take your scarf and simply wrap around and tuck the ends into the pleats of your wrapped wreath. Making this project so simple!


Sock Snowman - trio of snow people on a shelf

Sock SnowmanThis has to be the most fun craft I have made yet! It is so very easy, a great craft to do with the kids! It is funny when I show people and tell them it is only a single tube sock filled with rice. Everything here is from The Dollar Store. I just love that place!


A goodie bag with candy and other items.

Santa Goodie Bag HuntThis idea was my 7 year old granddaughter's thought. She suggested to me, "Nana, you know how we have an Easter egg hunt? Why can't we have a Santa Hunt?" As she stood there with her hand on her hip. (She is quite dramatic). I told her, "Kate, that is a fun great idea!"


A Christmas present with a red ribbon.

Save Time, Money And Aggravation During the HolidaysAre you old-fashioned like me and still like to go to the store to see and feel the gift you are selecting? Do you still enjoy the process and thrill of finding that special gift, wrapping it, and giving it?


Christmas Tree Pop-up Card -  inside of finished card with greeting added

Christmas Tree Pop-up CardMy kids' school project theme just switched to Christmas. They were required to make a DIY greeting card. This will be entered in a class contest and here's our entry.


Giant Christmas Ball Decoration - blue ornament

Giant Christmas Ball DecorationFrom such humble beginnings I was able to create something pretty cute. Dollar Tree plate chargers and some glitter hot glue come together for this cute scene.



Lace Frill Sock Christmas Angel - finished angel with wings added hanging from a tree branch

Lace Frill Sock Christmas AngelTurn a girl's cotton lace frill sock into a sweet little Christmas angel. A great way to use a mismatched sock for something useful.


Pasta Christmas Tree - finished pasta tree on a red surface

Pasta Christmas TreeThis is a beautiful little centerpiece you can make from dry pasta, a foam cone, and paint. I think it'd be beautiful in any colour, but it really looks quite chic in gold with red accents. The farfalle bowtie pasta sitting on top is a cute little finishing touch.


Christmas Tea Tree - sitting on a shelf

Christmas Tea TreeThis is a cute Christmas tea tree to make and gift to a tea lover, or as decor for the holidays. You could pair this gift with a mug filled with chocolates.


An outdoor evergreen tree decorated for Christmas.

Didn't Have Much At ChristmasChristmas means a lot of different things to different people. One Christmas, my husband and I were really down on our luck, but I am a firm believer in things happen for a reason. I also believe that Christmas isn't about charge cards and buying and material things.


Curtain Rod For Hanging Christmas Stockings - several Christmas stockings hanging on a curtain rod beneath the fireplace mantel

Curtain Rod For Hanging Christmas StockingsI use a curtain rod to hang the Christmas stockings from the fireplace mantel. It will handle more weight then the stocking holders do and its easy to slide the stockings to the side when we light a fire.


finished snowman

Snowman Made of Plastic CupsI still have two more half spheres of plastic cups which I previously turned into a chandelier. One is small and the other one is big so I got the idea of making another decoration which is a snowman.


A decorated and lighted Christmas tree in a living room.

Affordable Family ChristmasAs newly retired parents to three young adult children, we have decided as a family to reframe our Christmas into something more meaningful than gifts to us. Rather than buying and receiving expensive items that our young adult children can't afford (with college loans and life expenses), we are starting new traditions with our family. Maybe you might want to use one or two yourself!


Driftwood Christmas Tree - finished tree

Driftwood Christmas TreeLiving in Tahiti has many advantages, but when it comes to Christmas it has one major disadvantage. We don't have live Christmas trees here. Therefore, we normally end up settling for an artificial tree. Years ago the people here on the islands used driftwood to make their trees for the holidays.


Two rolls of Christmas lights on paper tubes.

The Best Way to Store Christmas Tree LightsIn Christmas movies where trees are decorated, I often see the lights in a jumbled mess. As a child it was the same way; untangling those lights took forever! A few years ago, I had an epiphany. Why not use paper towel rolls to store the strands? I have used this method for at least four years.


singing angel made from a glass bottle

White and Gold Upcycled Bottle Christmas AngelUpcycle an empty glass bottle into a beautiful angel for Christmas. With a gold and white dress, and white glitter wings, this angel will add a touch of glamour to your Christmas decorations.


Removing a bow after the present has been given.

Reuse Special Christmas BowsReuse special Christmas bows for years to come, as you can see in the photos. After the present is open, you can easily remove the bow and use again.


large tire snowman in desert yard

Tire SnowmanHere is a fun way to make a big snowman with tires.


A bear inside an oven mitt with a red and snowflake pattern.

Use Seasonal Oven Mitts for Christmas StockingsThere were such cute seasonally decorated oven mitts at the Dollar General. I decided to use one as a holder of a little gift or two. I added a candy cane filled with Starburst flavored jellybeans. It will be for an adult and I will put a little gift card to a local restaurant inside, wrapped in a little box.


cardboard tube Christmas wreath

Cardboard Tube WreathThis is a gorgeous way to recycle the cardboard tubes from the inside of your toilet paper or kitchen roll. You can dazzle them up with some colourful findings from nature outside. Enjoy and happy holidays!


finished frosted jar decorated with paper trees

Oh Christmas Tree Jar LightTurn an empty clear glass jar into a Christmas jar light. Use the jar light to decorate your table for Christmas Eve, or make a few to decorate your front porch. A thrifty way to decorate for the festive season!



finished penguin

Coffeemate Container PenguinThis cute penguin starts with a Coffeemate container, some felt, and a hot glue gun. It is a great gift for a teacher or fellow workers.


Book Pages Christmas Wreath

Book Pages Christmas WreathMy husband is an avid book reader. He reads them and then places the books in three categories; keep, donate, and junk. I use the ones from the junk pile to upcycle, of course! Give this craft a try. It is my husband's twist on a Martha Stewart wreath. It's practically free!


Christmas Reindeer Headband

Christmas Reindeer HeadbandWho says you can't have fun during Christmas time? Make this cute reindeer headband and wear it to any social events you attend during Christmas time. A great way to bring festive cheer to the occasion! Whoo-hoo!


Red Nosed Reindeer Candy Box

Red Nosed Reindeer Candy BoxChristmas is a time of sharing and having fun together as a family. Here is an activity that you and the kids can do together. Make a few of these reindeer candy boxes, and let the kids give them to their friends or their favorite teachers. A cute way of spreading festive joy without leaving the budget in a mess.


Toilet Roll Father Christmas- completed decoration

Toilet Roll Father ChristmasThis year, make an early start with your Christmas decorations. Turn your empty toilet paper roll into a cute Father Christmas that is inexpensive to make. This is a fun craft that you can do as a family.


Santa Hat Christmas Tradition

Santa Hat Christmas TraditionMy daughter was one of those that wanted to get up at the crack of dawn to open Christmas presents. I got an old Santa hat and, each year, I would leave it on the pillow next to her head. When she woke up and the hat was there, she knew that Santa had been there.


Hide Money for Teens Inside Glove Fingers

Hide Money for Teens Inside Glove FingersMy 3 grandchildren are all teenagers now and it is very difficult to know what to buy them for Christmas. Money is always welcome but I didn't want to just give them an envelope with cash.


finished tree

Paper Doily Christmas TreeMake a delicate Christmas tree to add to your table decorations for Christmas Eve. Use cardstock and paper doilies to create it, and add a silver star to the top of this dainty little tree.


finished snowman hot chocolate gift

Coffee-Mate Container SnowmanTurn your empty Coffee-Mate into a unique gift by adding a box of hot chocolate and marshallows.


Unique Gift Card or Cash Wrapping

Unique Gift Card or Cash WrappingTurn an old book into a box to hold a gift card or cash gift.


Finished bag.

Mock Pewter Stocking Filler Gift BagUse aluminum foil and some shoe polish to create this mock pewter gift bag. Fill it with stocking fillers or candies, and you are ready to spread some Christmas cheer to friends and neighbors alike!


Finished snowmen.

Little Snowmen Ornaments from Yogurt BottlesEverytime I drank one of the Dannon Drinkable yogurts this year I thought the bottles were shaped like little snowmen.


Finished tree.

Foam Cone Poinsettia TreeDecorate a foam cone tree with glitter poinsettias, adorned with bow tie ornament.


Finished wreath.

Paper Poinsettias WreathCreate a fun and festive holiday decor. Cover a wreath with glittery gold and white paper poinsettias.


Tree branch painted white and decorated with ornaments.

Nature-Friendly Christmas TreeThis year, I wanted to do something different for Christmas. Keeping up with the green trend, I wanted to have a Christmas tree that would be friendly towards nature.



card dresses

Christmas Card Paper DressesIf you have old holiday cards laying around and don't want to throw them away, why not use them to create these cute paper dresses.


Decorated chandelier.

Christmas ChandelierI spiced up my dining room light by adding a homemade wreath to the bottom of it. It was simple and cheap and I think it looks nice and homey!


A reindeer in the snow

My Son's Christmas MemoriesA couple of years ago, when the latest recession hit, I asked my then 21 year old son, who was home for Christmas, what his favourite Christmas gifts were when he was a child.


Finished house card.

Seasons Greetings House CardMake this Christmas card to bring Seasons Greetings from your house to a neighbor's house, and spread some Christmas cheer.


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Gather Items All Year for Christmas CharitiesIf you participate in Christmas gift charities, such as Operation Christmas Child and the like, here is a tip to make giving those gifts much easier and which will also have you thinking of the recipients all year long!


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Keeping Your Christmas Tree Fresh LongerMost people cut a bit off the bottom when they 1st get the tree, but if your tree dries out the closer it gets to Christmas this is easy to do while the tree is in the stand still.


Closeup of finished ornament.

Silver Starburst OrnamentsThese ornaments can be used any time of the year if you use different colors of beads and sequins and they are lots of fun to make!


Two jars with finished lids, motifs, and beads.

Beaded Lid Upcycled Gift JarsMake these upcycled gift jars by decorating jar lids with beads, etc.


Decorated Cookie Christmas Tree

Decorated Cookie Christmas TreeExcellent and yummy gift, easy for kids to make!


Finished angel.

Arielle (Christmas Angel)The idea when making this angel was to create a decoration only from scrap material. I rummaged through my craft supplies and found a twig ball that I had used in a floral creation a number of years ago.


Photo of an after Christmas mess.

"Twas the Day After Christmas"Twas the day after Christmas when all through the mall, not a shopper was stirring, they had all hit the wall. The stockings were empty, the trees were all bare, in hopes that the Visa bill, wouldn't be there.


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Divide Plants for Frugal Holiday GiftsI have too many people on my Christmas list and not enough money. This year I've planted my spider plant babies into decorative coffee mugs and some into old glass pedestal candle holders and adorned them with homemade bows and candy canes.


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Keeping a Christmas Journal to Plan for Next YearThe Christmas season moves by so quickly. Oftentimes I come across ideas that I would love to do, but I run out of time. This year I have started a Christmas journal. I've added my Christmas card list to it, along with new craft ideas and recipes that I will try next Christmas!


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Themed Stocking StuffersTired of the same old stocking stuffers? Here's a horse of a different color idea. Instead of using a traditional stocking why not use something entirely different.


A plate of cookies and milk for Santa

How We Keep the Santa Magic AliveOur daughters are now 13 and 20, but neither one has ever asked us if we are Santa Claus. From the time they were very young we tried to do magical things to keep the spirit of St. Nick alive.


Cookies stacked in 8 oz. water bottle with ribbon and decorations tied around the center.

Water Bottle Holiday Gift PackageThis is a great way to use some of those empty water bottles. Fill them with treats then decorate them up a bit, and you have a great package ready for gift giving.


Beautifully Decorated Upside Down Christmas Tree

Upside Down Christmas TreeThis is my upside down Christmas tree. It is artificial and with bigger branches on the top. I put 1200 LED lights and 400 regular lights (so the ornamotions will work).


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Stock Up On Candy CanesCandy canes may be one of the least expensive holiday decorations and treats you can buy. Purchase a supply to incorporate into your holiday decorations. You can find various craft ideas that include candy canes.


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Holiday Digital Scavenger HuntHere is an easy, free idea for your next party, a digital scavenger hunt. It is great for all ages and has the added benefit of providing a great mix of entertaining family memory photos.


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Christmas PillowcasesThis year, I am giving each of my grand-nieces and nephews a personalized pillowcase made of Christmas-print cotton fabric. My daughter is putting the names on the opening edge, so everyone will know whose is whose.


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A Christmas Cake for JesusWhen my children were very small, I wanted them to have fun with Christmas and Santa, but I also wanted them to understand what the true meaning is behind this holiday.


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Peppermint BarkTwo ingredients and super easy!


Larger Than Life Christmas Tree

Larger Than Life Christmas TreeDue to the economy, we decided to get a tiny Christmas tree this year. Even though it's still adorable and just as loved as a huge tree would be, I giggle at how small it is.


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Left-Right Christmas Gift ExchangeThe soon-to-be here Christmas holiday often has people wondering how to do a gift exchange. Here's a fun way that's good for parties, group gatherings, teens and adults: Have everyone bring a gift ($10 or less) and sit in a big circle holding their gift.


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No Toys As Gifts For The HolidaysDespite the fact that one of her sons thinks she is the meanest mom in the world, a good friend has informed the grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. that if they want to buy her children gifts they must be books, clothing, gift cards, etc.


Christmas Card: The Strom's of NorwaySince I am an art director and graphic designer, I thought it was about time to do something for my family instead of everyone else! I used a photo of an evergreen tree branch, Norway flag, Norway shield, Christmas ornament top, and of course two different pictures of my kids, Dawson and Chloe.


A girl holding two paper dolls.

Christmas In a BoxMy grandchildren have plenty of toys, and sometimes, like other children, would rather play with the box the toy comes in than the actual toy itself. As a result, for their Christmas and birthday presents, I have put together craft projects.


Christmas: Shepard Cat

Christmas: Shepard CatHere is a picture of our cat (his name is Desmond Morton) in the middle, dressed like a shepherd with my sheep.


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Used Books Make Great GiftsBirthdays, Christmas, Mother's Day, etc. All of our charity thrift shops sell used books, for children and adults, usually priced at $.50 for paperbacks and $1.00 for hardcovers. Our library does, too


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ThriftyFun Link as Free Christmas PresentI'm sending this website's URL as a Christmas present to all my friends who send me e-mail.


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Baby Stockings for Christmas OrnamentsYou can find inexpensive packages of red, green or Christmas decorated baby and toddler socks and/or booties on sale now. Just sew a loop at the top of them to hang on your Christmas tree.


A stocking full of little gifts

How to Fill a Holiday Stocking for FreeStockings don't have to cost anything and are supposed to be filled with small trinkets and goodies, not things like $50 gift cards and iPods! Remember when we used to get clementines in there? What happened with that?


Two boys crying in front of tree

Crying Children Christmas CardSometimes you just gotta go with it!


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Ease Your Christmas Grocery BudgetI start grocery boxes at the end of February for the next Christmas holidays. I keep a list of things I buy regularly, then wait until they are on a super sale and stock up on them.


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Create a Tree With Your ChildrenInstead of a tree that may shed, cause allergies, or one that you have to pay $300 for, why don't you make your own? This is a money AND space saver.


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Have Kids Pick Their Presents from SantaWith the holiday season coming up quickly it reminds me of what I did when my daughter was little and in grade school. On Thanksgiving evening, I would break out several magazines like Sears, Penny's or even Kmart/Walmart advertisements.


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Use Photos as Gift Tags at ChristmasI have a Christmas package tip to share: My niece, just turned 5, loves to pass out the gifts on Christmas morning at my house.


Christmas Tote Bag

Christmas Tote BagThis is a Christmas tote bag made of quilting scraps. I made this tote bag from two squares of 30 by 30 inch material with batting in the middle. You then quilt them together and put a binding around the raw edges.


a person doing a crossword in pencil

Frugal Crossword Puzzle Gift IdeaThis is a frugal holiday or birthday gift idea for people who like crossword puzzles. If you get the daily newspaper, or have a neighbor who does (and doesn't do the crosswords), do this:


two beautifully painted gourd angels

Gourd AngelsPick your gourds, wash in dish soap and bleach, let dry, about an hour. Pick which colors of acrylic paint you want to use on the dress, and skin tone for the face and you are ready to paint. When you are finished painting, set aside and let dry, I always let them dry overnight just to be sure.


Christmas wreath made from crafting scrap fabric pieces.

Scrap Fabric WreathI made a yo-yo quilt for my mother-in-law for Christmas and had 4 bags of scrap material. I made a fabric wreath using the scraps.


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Make Rules for Next Christmas NowStart new rules for Christmas gift giving... now! Now is the perfect time to discuss with family and friends that maybe it's time to rethink gift giving for next Christmas.


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Making Curlicues from Shredded PaperTo make curlicues out of shredded paper for Christmas presents; you take regular shredded paper and wrap it around a knitting needle, or larger bamboo skewer.


Formula Can Snowman

Formula Can SnowmanI made this snowman out of empty formula cans and an empty pudding cup. I took empty 12 oz. and 25 oz. formula cans and painted them white.


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Thrifty Gifts For The FamilyI have been trying to think of "thrifty" presents for my immediate family. I am also planning to buy them modestly priced "new" items but I thought a thrifty gift would also be special, because they know I am into that kind of thing. Here is what I have come up with. I hope other people will also contribute their ideas.


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Ordinary Box As A GiftHere's a great way to save money on gifts and get the kids involved too. This particular gift idea is so easy and says "I love you" so well. Make several of these keepsakes and give them to grandparents, aunts, uncles, and anyone who needs a smile.



Photo Christmas Keepsake OrnamentI had photo made on transparency film at Kinko's. Then I cut it out in a 3 inch circle. Rolled it up and inserted into the top of clear glass ball. It flattens out by itself. I added some angel (or glitter) hair, poking it down with a pencil, on each side of the film.


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Easy Yule LogsEasy Yule Logs. These make great Christmas gifts with just a little work.


Snowman made from a coffee can.

Coffee Can Snowman Craft ProjectI spray painted an old coffee can with white spray paint then sponged white acrylic white paint for a textured look. I painted on black eyes, glued on a button nose, and drew on a smile. . .


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Reuse Tissue Paper and Gift BagsA few years ago my husband and I decided we were not wasting any more wrapping paper at Christmas time. It seems such a waste of money and natural resources to be throwing all that wrap out.


A Christmas ornament made from a recycled CD.

Recycled CD OrnamentMake a beautiful ornament with an old CD. This is very simple and easy to do. Let your imagination soar!


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