Tuesday, December 18, 2012


If you're a long time follower of my blog you know that when it comes to Christmas gifts my children receive the number to some may be qualified as small, but to us it seems just right.

We've always given our kids 4 gifts, one from each category (want, need, wear, read).  For more info on this method click HERE for a more in depth post about the way we do gifts.
This year, when planning and deciding what to get each child I felt like we needed to add a fifth category/gift for the kids.

I love seeing my children's minds work.  Seeing a robot they have drawn with instructions on how to build it, then watching them gather the materials to build the robot makes me smile, or reading a book they've written and illustrated themselves on printer paper and stapled together.  These are the things I save.  These are the things we love.

Bret and I both thought it made sense to add another category for the kids gifts.
As I stamped the word onto the gift tags I was excited.  My head filled with so many ideas for things to get the kids under this category. 

The kids were just as excited.  Verification of this excitement was given when Mailee and Ella both screamed "FIVE presents!?!  YESSSS!!", with high fives exchanged between all 3 kids. (if you didn't click to the link about gifts above, let me clarify they do get more then 5 presents.  Usually Santa brings one or two gifts and then there is one large family gift).

I can't wait for them to see what we got them for their "Create" gift this year.  I found blank, hard back books for them to fill with their stories.  For them they will love that it's more "legit" than the printer paper stapled together, and for me, I am happy that they will be easier to save
Speaking of gifts, this is the first year I have done the same neighbor/friend gift as the previous year.  I think I will do this butter every year.  It's yummy and easy for the kids to make.

Cinnamon Butter

2 sticks butter softened
1 - 1 /12 cup powdered sugar
1 cup honey
2 teaspoons cinnamon

Whip butter until fluffy. Add sugar, then honey, then cinnamon. Whip all ingredients together until fluffy and well incorporated. Scrape down the sides and whip some more.

I used 4 ounce jam jars which you can find by the canning items at your local grocery store.

Fill a piping bag (or ziplock bag with a corn cut off) with the butter and fill jars. I found this to be much easier than attempting to spoon the butter in the jars (which I did with the first two until I thought of the piping bag).
Yields: six 4 ounce jars

*Suggested uses:
-on warm bread/rolls
-pancakes, waffles, and french toast
-stirred into oatmeal (a favorite use for me)
-eaten with a spoon (cause it's that good)


Carrie said...

This is the first year we adopted the "want, need, wear and read" for the kids and I have loved it! I feel like it really helped us reign in the spending and give us more time/energy to focus on the important side of Christmas. Thanks for the great idea. :)

jessiewessie said...

You guys are so great at "keeping it real" for your kids. What great examples! Also, since you posted your recipe last year I make the butter allll the time. It is super yummy!

Kaye said...

Hi! ive been an avid reader of your blog :)

I'd like to ask what do you use to create the tags?

Thanks! :)

{Erica} said...

Hi Kaye! Thanks for commenting!

I found a couple set of individual letter stamps (one stamp per each letter in the alphabet) years ago at the Dollar store! I love how the letters don't all line up perfectly because I'm stamping each word one letter at a time.

The tags I ordered from a paper supply company in bulk. I use the tags usually for my Etsy store (earrings and hair pins), but also use them as gift tags.

I store the letters and the stamp pad in the wrapping/Christmas ribbon tote until they are needed again.

I do have thoughts sometimes during the stamping/tag making process to just get on Etsy and have stamps created for the tags but never get around to it.

Hope this answered your question.

Caroline said...

Hi Erica,

I have been looking for the perfect gift to give my co-workers. I made a double batch of the cinnamon butter and gave them out today. It was perfect!!!