We have some families we like to do a little something for at Christmas but I like to keep them super cheap because a) I am super cheap - you probably already know this and b) then there isn't any pressure for reciprocating or spending money on us.
If you can draw you could make your own wonderful version of this. If you are me clip art and colouring in pencils are your friend. I've made 4 cards in each set so that there is some variation. Print, colour, cut out laminate and you are good to go. If I am feeling generous I would also add a whiteboard marker and small brushed cotton cloth for each child.
Whenever children travel in our car they pick these up and comment on them.
I tend to save ours until we are a good hour or half hour into our journey and I can't bear one more round of eye-spy (I am that lazy). I often have a wee bag of treats to accompany the completion of the card too.
If you can't be bothered putting your own together but you want some flick me an email or leave a comment and I will email you my ones.
My sister made both my boys an A,B,C photo book for their first birthday. She combined photos and art (she can draw) to make them both a book that has been SO well loved.
You could easily put together one of these books on any photo printing site that does photo books too. Write the alphabet out and allocate something/one to each person. Take photos that are meaningful to the children (their holiday batch, them in a tent, a favourite toy, grandparents...) for each letter of the alphabet and play around.
Magnetic Story Board:
Another great idea from Leonie, who made my boys a nativity board last year. Take a large tray and draw/trace/copy the pictures from a favourite story. Laminate the pictures and stick adhesive magnets to the back. My boys have loved this so much and I mean to make more characters so they can tell more stories.
Super small and sweet. The boys love making these and they are a lovely, affordable gesture when you want to do something. Just throw a bag of jaffas and a couple of bags of chocolate covered peanuts in the trolley and you're most of the way there.
So do you have any cheap ideas that require not too much skill to make for family gifts? Do you ever make/buy gifts for other families or is it relations only? Do you buy gifts for your extended family?
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Love you more than half a bag of left over jaffas xxxx