This time of year it can be nice to take a break from the holiday craziness for a couple of hours and be creative, work with nature’s gifts, and maybe even a kid or two, to make something for yourself or others. I remember watching Little House on the Prairie and being shocked at how excited they were for their Christmas gifts which were always something like a penny and a hand-sewn apron for their one and only doll. Those days may be long gone but we can still appreciate the small things, the natural gifts that are crafted by hand that can add a sparkle of ‘special’ to a bath, a meal, or a daily routine. Kids love to be creative and make things, something that seems to happen less and less in school these days, so really if you are crafting with kids you are giving them a gift in the making as well as in the giving. Part of the fun is the labeling and packaging too, so let yourself or your young helper/s let out their inner artist. Including instructions with the gifts is also a good idea just to make sure the receiver remembers how to use the gift days later when all the chaos and hubbub of gift giving is over, plus it’s a sneaky little writing exercise for youngsters too, and can be awfully cute. It’s also a great time to share the value of reusing glass bottles and other containers, as well as why choosing ‘natural’ over ‘artificial’ is important. Some ideas to consider:
For the cook~ Bouquet Garni, Olive Oil and Vinegar infused with herbs (For the bouquet garni you will need cooking twine or muslin bags, parsley, thyme, and a bay leaf or two, plus other herbs if you want.) Use dried herbs only with the oil, but vinegar can take dry or fresh. See video below for more details.
For the yoga and/or meditation practitioner: Chakra oils (This link takes you to another post with a how-to tutorial.)
For men~ Cologne (video below but using a recipe from Wormwood’s The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy), body oil, hair growth blend (Links to other posts with the how-to info.)
For the cat fanatic~ Catnip pillow (you can do this for dogs too, just sick some treats in there instead of the catnip.) Link is to Pinterest how-to tutorials.
I really enjoy the labeling process (as you can clearly see by all the options I included) so here are ideas to get you started:
In case you can’t reuse the glass bottles and jars that you already have, here are a couple of options:
Enjoy being creative and fashioning nature’s gifts into self-care treats for yourself or others, and please share with anyone who might be looking for DIY ideas, especially if they have little ones they are crafting with. Kids love creating and especially love working with herbs and essential oils. They just seem to have an instinct for the ancestral authenticity of it. I hope your winter season is full of natural delights and plenty of rest and rejuvenation.