Disclosure: Thanks so much once again to OnlineLabels.com for sponsoring this series of Holiday Gift Hangouts on Air! The selection and variety of labels is simply amazing and I find them so handy to keep on hand for all kinds of household needs and DIY projects.
In this video, I have three different super quick and easy gifts you can make for the holidays. These are really easy to whip up in batches and take so little time, they’re perfect for those last minute gift giving emergencies. They make ideal gifts for neighbours, friends, co-workers, and teachers and you can definitely get the kids involved in making these!
Here are the recipes and printables you’ll need to make these Three Quick and Easy DIY Holiday Gifts:
Snowman Soup (Potato Soup Mix in a Jar) Recipe: Simply combine 2 cups potato flakes (instant mashed potatoes – I used Roasted Garlic flavoured this time but usually I just use the plain), 1 3/4 cups powdered milk, 2 T. chicken or vegetable bouillon powder, 2 tsp onion flakes, 2 tsp. dried parsley, 1/4 tsp. dried thyme, and 1 1/2 tsp seasoned salt PLUS my secret ingredient that I’m sharing with you because I love my readers – 2 T. Molly McButter. I think it adds a extra little flavour and richness to the soup.
You can also experiment with other seasonings – I love adding some black pepper to this and I think rosemary tastes quite good in potato soup but some people don’t like the texture. If you want it to be more like a loaded baked potato soup taste, you can also add powdered cheese (Molly McButter has a cheese flavouring as well or you can often find it at your local bulk food store) and bacon bits (you’ll need to use the soy kind – the real bacon bits have to be kept refrigerated after opening and have a much more limited shelf life).
You might notice that my soup looks a bit yellowish. They didn’t have my usual brand of potato flakes at the store which are much whiter and I think look better as a snowman. Also, to maintain that white appearance, if I add any items like the cheese and butter flavourings or the bacon bits, I don’t stir them right into the mix. Instead, I make a “well” in the middle of the mix once I’ve put it in the jar and add those ingredients there so that they’re kept hidden. Just be sure to include instructions telling the recipient to give the jar a good shaking to mix it all up before using. Also, let them know that the basic rule of thumb is 1 cup hot water to 1/2 cup of the mix.
Instructions for the Candy Cane Bath Salts: To make 6 (8 oz each) jars of bath salts, you need to mix together, about 6 cups of Epsom salts and 2 cups of sea salts. Sprinkle in some peppermint scented essential oil. I would start with just 2 drops and then stir it up. Walk away and come back to smell it again and add more if needed. If you’re making this ahead of time, go just a little bit stronger than you think you need it to be as the scent will dissipate a bit over time. You can also open the jars and just drip in one last drop before giving them to your recipient if needed. Divide this mixture in half and colour one half with red food colouring. If you use the basic food colouring, you won’t get a true red but more of a dark pink instead. Use paste food colouring for redder results. As I said on the video, I’ve been making this for at least 20 years now and I’ve never had this mixture stain a bathtub or stain me and those I’ve gifted with this, say the same. If you’re concerned though, go to a craft supplier where they sell DIY bath and beauty ingredients and get your colouring from them.
Instructions for the DIY Liquid Hand Soap: Grate a bar of soap (something like Ivory soap is ideal). Boil 4 cups of water and remove from the heat. Add the grated soap and stir it until thoroughly melted and combined. Let it thicken and cool for about half an hour and give it another good stir. Leave overnight (or at least 4-6 hours). If it’s too liquid, you can heat it up again and add more soap. If it’s too thick, you can heat it up again and add more water. Add essential oil for fragrance and colouring if you’d like but this isn’t necessary. Use a funnel to decant into your soap dispensers.
To get the printables for the labels that I used in the video:
The potato soup and candy cane bath salts are great ones to let the kids help with (just use caution with the peppermint essential oil as you don’t want your child to get it on their hands and then accidentally rub some into their eyes!). If they’re a bit older, you can even practise some math skills with the measuring. For the hand soap, of course if you’re making it yourself, it does involve the use of the stove so please take all necessary precautions. Little ones can help decorate the tree stickers and if they’re a bit older, they can practise their pouring skills by putting the soap into the dispensers.
IF YOU HURRY, YOU HAVE TIME TO ENTER THIS GREAT GIVEAWAY FOR OVER $400 IN TARGET GIFT CARDS (unfortunately, it’s only open to US residents). Giveaway ends Saturday November 1, 2014 so don’t delay!
And be sure to head on over to Crafty Hangouts to check out all the other fantastic DIY holiday gift videos there! SO MANY GREAT IDEAS!!! You can click on the image below to go there.