Christmas gifts you can make for your family and friends and kids that they will love. No crafty skill necessary! These gifts save you money and come straight from the heart. Your family will adore these gifts.
As a single parent, we often have to trade saving money with quality. But no one wants to do that for Christmas! The average American spends almost $1,000 per year on Christmas. If you’ve budgeted for that, great! But if not, I urge you not to go into debt.
I also know that not everyone is crafty. So I’ve got some ideas your family will ️love, but it will take some planning from you.
There’s always a trade in life:
- Go in debt or give fabulous huge presents.
- Give cheap presents your family will secretly throw away but stay within budget.
- Budget throughout the year for Christmas and give lovely gifts.
- Spend time planning and creating your own gifts with your loved ones in mind and knock their socks off.
If you didn’t do #3 and suddenly it’s December (or even if you did), no sweat, #4 works for everyone.
I’ve gathered some of my favorite low to no-cost Christmas gifts I give every year below and created a printable pack to help you make these gifts.
Have fun this year, giving from the heart!
easy Gifts for Family and Friends you can make
12 Days of Christmas
This is a fun activity for young kids and perfect for social distancing.
Gather 12 gifts and drop one off at your family member or friend’s door for 12 nights. Kids love being a part of this. They can help gather the gifts and help you surprise your loved one.
You can make this gift expensive or get all your gifts at the dollar store! Or you can collect items throughout the year, or even give a loved one sentimental items. It can literally only cost you your imagination.
And maybe gas.
Your imagination is the limit here.
The planning printable is included in the Christmas Mini-Bundle.
DIY Subscription boxes
Instead of paying for a generic subscription box to be sent to your mom or best friend, you can create your own. And it’s super simple.
Again, this gift can cost a lot of money, or I’ve given (my favorite) used books, which cost me nothing.
Think of a theme for your loved one, then think of 12 gifts you can give them. Wrap up the 12 gifts, then put a label of January through December on the gifts.
Each month the recipient opens a new gift.
I like to include a teaser on each label that personalizes it more. Under the month name, I explain why I’m giving this particular item to my friend or family member in a couple of sentences.
This works particularly great for sentimental items that you’re giving away, such as books you’ve read, and what you think your friend will like or old jewelry items or family heirlooms.
This extra note sets this gift above all others and makes it more impressive than a subscription box you buy from a retailer.
You can get the gift tags from the Christmas Mini-Bundle. Also included is a certificate you can hand them on Christmas Day, so they have something to open.
Gifts for Your Kids you can make
Activity of the Month or Monthly Experience Gifts
My favorite way to give my children gifts AND save money on Christmas is through what I like to call “Activity of the Month.”
The concept is simple, but the sky is the limit.
You gift your child 12 envelopes on Christmas Day. One for each month in 2021. Inside of each envelope is an activity you’ll do with them in the upcoming year.
“Activity of the Month” is great because 1) you control the cost from $0 to whatever! 2) Christmas lasts all year long 3) it forces quality time with your child each month 4) you’re not spending a ton of money in December.
Your child won’t be disappointed he’s not opening a toy, either. I’ve been doing this gift for FIVE years, and it’s hands down my kid’s favorite gift each year.
You can get all the details and lots of ideas here.
In my kids’ stocking each year, I give them coupons. They no longer look forward to these so much as expect them. The kids hold onto these all year long and ration them, so they last until next Christmas.
I have blank ones inside the Christmas Mini-Bundle you can print off because depending on your kids’ age, you’ll have different things you’ll want to offer them.
These coupons are another great opportunity to add activities to your kids’ lives that are no or low cost. You can also add things like additional electronics time as a treat that they can use a coupon to turn in.
I have the kids make some Christmas coupons to give to Grandma or Grandpa as a gift. They include stuff like
- watch a movie with me
- walk your dog
- bake cookies together
- have a sleep-over