Friday, January 16, 2015

DIY Christmas Projects

I had a very home spun kind of a Christmas. Last year we gave everyone a bottle of wine or two from Chris's favorite vineyard. It stunk. I wrapped everything and he got mad because the wine I wrapped for each person didn't match their personality. I gave my boss a bottle just to find out he didn't drink, etc. This year I made my own wrapping paper and my own gifts. Much better!

I bought red and black bags and wrapping paper and went nuts with my chalk marker:
 I also ended up using the marker to redo what I'd messily written with old fashioned chalk. 
 So here are the gifts I gave. For the non-drinkers I had candy cane hot chocolate and peppermint bark.
 I bought the jars and black labels at The Container Store. I held everything together with this tape and tied it all together with this twine. 

 For the drinkers I made candy cane vodka and peppermint bark. Then I included a gift card in addition to the edible gifts. 
 I bought the bottles at The Container Store too. Here's how to make Candy Cane Vodka:
- Add a few candy canes to a glass bottle with a hermetic seal
-Cover with vodka. It can be inexpensive, but not so cheap that the flavor overpowers the taste of the candy.
 About an hour later this is what it looks like. By the next day the candy will have completely dissolved and the vodka will be pink. I couldn't taste test it due to baby girl but I've heard some rave reviews!
 I used this recipe to make the peppermint bark. 
 It was delicious and also highly reviewed! 
 I then put it in a jar, used my chalk marker, and tied it off with some twine. Overall I think I knocked this year's gifts out of the park compared to last year's! 
We also got our first live tree this year! I've always wanted my own live tree. I think I only convinced Chris it was worth the hassle because we were away for our first anniversary and I was massively pregnant and gave him those big "please" eyes. We got it in Michigan and prayed our way back to Illinois that it would stay on the roof!
When we made a fresh cut to the bottom I saved the little stump for the tree:

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