Thursday, December 20, 2007

Frugal Christmas gifts

With Christmas creeping even closer, I have been taking time to do some baking. The recipients of my gift include my colleagues, my grandparents and my neighbors. Since today is the last day the majority of my colleagues will be at work, I needed to get all my baking done in time. My current selection includes gingersnaps (a favorite of my mom's father and I like their bite), chocolate peanut butter cookies (Reese's chips in a chocolate cookie) and Danish cookies. I made a fourth cookie but most of them were a failure. I am not sure where I went wrong but when I try something different, the results can be mixed.

However, my most frugal gift is to a friend at work. She likes to knit and create silver jewelry among other arts and crafts. My aunt had tried to crochet, decided it was not for her and then asked her relatives at Thanksgiving if anyone wanted the yarn she purchased. I took it because I thought of my friend. She had a tall kitchen garbage bag full of yarn in four colors. I also asked if anyone in my family had any silver jewelry they no longer wanted and my sister contributed two rings. Other than a cost of a few minutes of my time, I am giving my friend a gift of free stuff but they are all items she will use.

I intend to bake two more batches of cookies and two loaves of lemon poppy seed bread to make sure I have enough for my neighbors and family. My neighbors are getting gifts because they have been kind enough to help me throughout the year whether snowblowing out my driveway, mowing my lawn while I was overseas or allowing me to borrow a wheelbarrow. These efforts save me time, money and my body so I want to show my appreciation.

Other than baking, all I have left to do is wrap three more gifts, pack up the baked goods and write out a couple cards. Despite my tone, I am feeling some stress and am looking forward to my time off. Hopefully, you are dealing successfully with holiday stress and enjoying being with family and friends.

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