I have had a wonderful time with my family this week and just wanted to share a few of the homemade gifts I made in case you want to bookmark them for next year.
Vanilla Bean Infused Honey:
I found this idea for Vanilla Honey on Gutsy. She combined the seeds and pod of a vanilla bean to a pint of honey and let it infuse in the sunlight for 1-2 weeks.
I bought these little containers on Amazon. The set comes with 6 (1.5 ounce) jars. I also buy my vanilla beans in bulk on Amazon. I filled each of the jars with honey (I used orange blossom honey) and split the seeds from one vanilla bean between the jars. I used a toothpick to swirl the vanilla throughout the honey. I cut the vanilla pod into 6 pieces and stuck a piece into each jar. Store in the sunlight 1-2 weeks before placing in cabinet or wrapping as gifts. The vanilla tends to float to the top, so stir again before serving.
Hot Chocolate Mix:
I wanted a reason to make more marshmallows (first time was making the Frozen S’mores), so I found this idea for diy hot chocolate mixes at Uproot from Oregon. Since I had large jars (found them at Walmart), I doubled the recipe for the mixes: adding 1/2 cup dutch processed cocoa, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1/2 cup chocolate chips to each jar. I filled the rest with homemade marshmallows. I used Alton Brown’s recipe for the marshmallows and added the seeds from a vanilla bean during the final 12-15 minutes of mixing to make Vanilla Bean Marshmallows. The marshmallows will last in an airtight container for about 3 weeks (1 week for mini marshmallows).
I found this idea from Little Bit Funky on Pinterest. I bought blue round ornaments from Walmart. I put a thin layer of acrylic paint on a paper plate and had Evan coat his hand, then grab the bottom of the ornament. It took about 4 tries to get a few ornaments. He would always smudge his hand print on a couple of them. As long as you wash ornaments with water before the paint dries, it is easy to clean and start over. Evan absolutely loved making his hand print and didn’t mind remaking them over a couple of days.
I set the ornaments with a good hand print upside down on an egg carton to dry. Once dry, I used colored sharpies to write Evan’s name on the bottom and fill in the details for the snowmen.