It's that time of the year!! Christmas lights up on homes we drive by, Christmas music playing everywhere we go, festive gatherings with friends and family.... it really is the most wonderful time of the year. I admit it. I am a sucker for Christmas. I listen to Christmas music from the time I finish my Thanksgiving meal until I go to bed at night on Christmas Day. I love all of it from the cheesy Hallmark movies to sitting by the Christmas tree at night with a glass of wine (like I am right now) and a good book. To me, Christmas is about friends and family, giving and sharing, and all things good and kind.
One of my favorite things to do is make gifts for people. I absolutely love it and love to encourage others in exploring the magic and satisfaction of making their own gifts too. Something happens when I create handcrafted gifts that puts me into a different state of consciousness and I enjoy it. I become more introspective and think about how I want to be as a person in this life. About being selfless, patient, compassionate, kind, and loving. I think about the people that I love and am making the gifts for. It's a special experience and I hope you can find joy in it too!
So if you are in search of a last minute gift that is unique and handcrafted, check out this lovely guide that I put together for you! When you are making these maybe you too will feel the magic that I described. I'd love to hear about your experience! Below are 4 easy herbal minded gifts you can make for friends and family this holiday season. My Dad and Step-Mom love number one and look forward to a new batch every year.
1. Herbal Dipping Oil
- 750 mL of olive oil
-3 fresh sprigs each of thyme, sage, and rosemary
-3 dried sprigs of thyme, 1 dried sprigs of sage, and 2dried sprigs of rosemary
-16oz. bottle (clear swing top)
Fill the top portion of your double boiler pot with your olive oil and lower section with water. Then add your herbs and spices to the oil. Cover and let it all infuse together for about an hour on low heat. While this is doing it’s work, put the dried sprigs of thyme, rosemary, sage, and peppercorns into the bottle. When your oil is done, let it cool completely. Strain and funnel your oil into the bottle.
2. Herbal Christmas Tea
-3 parts Cinnamon stick (chopped)
-2 parts ground Ginger
-1 part whole Cardamom pods
-1 part whole Pink Peppercorns
-1 part Chicory root (chopped)
-1 part whole Star Anise
-1/2 part whole Clove pods
-1/2 part roasted Dandelion root
Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Fill them into pretty glass jars (click link above for the jars I like best for this project). Make a little label with cooking instructions:
Add 2-3 tsp of blend in a tea infuser like this one here that I love. Steep for 10 minutes in your favorite mug. Once strained, add honey or maple syrup and some milk to taste. Enjoy!
3. Herbal Bath Salts
-1 part Epsom salts
-1 part Mineral salts
-1/4 part Dried Lavender petals
-1/4 part dried Rose petals
-1/4 part Calendula petals
- couple drops of an essential oil such as lavender, orange, or a blend that you like.
Mix all of the ingredients together and put into your jars. I like these ones here. Label them with instructions:
Add a few scoops of salts to your hot bath water. Relax and enjoy!
4. Relaxing Herbal Bath Tea
-1 part dried Lavender flowers
-1 part dried Linden leaf and flower
-1 part dried Chamomile flowers
-1 part rolled oats
-1 muslin bag
Mix all of the ingredients into a pretty jar put muslin bag in top of the jar before putting the lid on and make a label with these instructions:
Fill bag with Bath Tea and add to a hot bath. Squeeze the bag while it is submerged in the water to allow oatmeal and herbs to infuse into your tub water.
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