|It looks like Christmas at my house!|
The thought crossed my mind that "a dollar flashlight is better than nothing in an emergency". What ummm.... deep thinking.
Actually, I am giving a very good flashlight as a gift this year to one who had no flashlight when I was at their home and one was needed. I gave them the flashlight I carried in my purse just so they would have one! That same person is receiving a few emergency supplies for their car for Christmas as they are on the road quite often in bad weather.
I also want to send out a reminder that if you have loved ones on a very fixed income (for instance... grandparents or single mothers), they would most likely love a gift card to their grocery store, a national store such as Target, or a favorite restaurant. If they shop through Amazon at all... an Amazon gift card is absolutely amazing. And if they have e-mail and they live far away, how simple it is to send them a gift card online!
When you are working full time and bringing in a regular income, it is difficult to imagine that someone would appreciate a gift card to a grocery store, a gas station, or anything so practical. I cringed last year when I was watching a TV program where the "expert" put down the giving of gift cards, saying she had a tendency to set them aside and lose them. Obviously this young woman has never had to count her pennies!
Even those on a slightly tight budget usually appreciates such a gift. I was talking to a friend recently who told me she loved getting such gifts because her family's income has to go to necessities. It is truly a gift for her to have the freedom to do a little shopping. Her husband has worked at the same place for more than a decade but his salary is modest.
Here are some gifts I am making this year:
I can only find sumac at the Asian food store but a couple grocery stores carry the small bags of garam masala. Both are quite inexpensive when purchased this way.
I have researched sumac since buying the bag for only a couple recipes and found out it is used a great deal by various chefs for its' citrus-y flavor. I not only have it in a jar but I placed some in a shaker for when I want to sprinkle it over hummus.
I made a small batch of this cinnamon maple butter for gifts this year. It is delicious! It is not only good on toast and biscuits but it would be wonderful on baked sweet potatoes and squash.
The recipe is on one of Elizabeth Foss' blog posts, just scroll down and you will find it... here. Note: This is a different link than I gave here last time to her blog for recipes.
This afternoon I will be making a few batches of shortbread in this delightful Christmas-y mold. I purchased some course sugar at the gourmet shop a few months ago with this recipe in mind.
I sprinkle it over the "warm from the oven" cookies and press in ever so gently so it sticks. Of course, shortbread and sugar cookies not made in molds would have a sprinkle before going into the oven. :)
Sooo... nothing really new or exciting but hopefully will spark a few ideas. And do check out that recipe on Elizabeth's blog for the cinnamon maple butter! Yum...