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Thread: 2012 Christmas Club

  1. #31
    Hmmmmm
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    I do baking gifts every year - about 4-6 different cookies, all done the week before Christmas so they are fresh (plus I don't have a freezer and they would be eaten on me otherwise). That gets tiring. Looking for something different this year, reckon I will have to start in July for anything I make. But first I'm keeping my eye out for a nice sewing machine deal.

  2. #32
    Canadian Genius Insane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EricsMom View Post
    I would love to hear how you make your vanilla and sugar. I go through a TON of vanilla and it's soooo expensive ... I bake cakes on the side to make some extra $$$.
    Quote Originally Posted by bgheuchert View Post
    OK! Here it is, the SECRETS OF HOMEMADE VANILLA and VANILLA SUGAR!!!


    1)Go to the liquor store
    2)Purchase a 66 of vodka, rum, or brandy
    3)Go to Costco and buy some vanilla bean (they are the freshest and cheapest there, excellent quality)
    4)Go home and pour yourself a double (seriously you will need the room in the bottle)
    5)Stuff the bottle with 10ish beans that you have cut in half
    6)Now put the lid on and steep for min 6 weeks, although the longer you let it sit the richer it gets, and it never goes bad. Now TRY not to "SAMPLE" it too often, as it will be the best vanilla extract you have ever smelled and tasted...and you do want SOME for christmas presents, right??!!

    Now, after you have drank your double, waddle over to the closet and get a quart sized jar, put 2ish vanilla beans in it that you have cut in half and fill it with sugar. Lid. DONE. You will be able to start smelling it after about 2 days, but honestly same as the extract the longer it sits the better.

    SO EASY YOU GUYS!
    p.s. i had a person ask me once if you could just steep the beans in water, NO, they will only steep properly in alcohol, sorry but ALL vanilla extract is made from alcohol, although I am not complaining Try making a double out of the extract after it has steeped for like 4 months, holy heck AMAZING! I've had stuff that has steeped for a year, PURE HEAVEN!
    I'm currently making vanilla extract too. I had no freakin' idea Vodka was so expensive though!! Goes to show I don't buy it often!

    I got my recipe from here:
    http://heavenlyhomemakers.com/making...allon-of-vodka
    http://heavenlyhomemakers.com/how-to...anilla-extract

    My plan is to then use the beans (I bought off ebay) to make the vanilla sugar. And then I will bottle it up (haven't found a good deal on amber bottles yet. Does Michael's sell them? I'll have to find some when I go to Ottawa in the summer) and attach it to the recipe cards that she sells on her site and print them off somewhere cheap. http://heavenlyhomemakers.com/what-t...cipe-card-pack
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  3. #33
    Canadian Genius Insane's Avatar
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    Some of these are really cool....

    http://heavenlyhomemakers.com/wp-con..._in_a_Jar1.pdf
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  4. #34
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    those are really cool!!!!! I will be using some, a for gifts, and B for my pantry. thanks for sharing

  5. #35
    Wishing for coupons! lucy16076's Avatar
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    I heard a great idea last year when someone posted that they put $5 on a Walmart (or whichever store you prefer really) g.c. on every shopping bill...use the same card, rack up $5 at each shopping trip throughout the year, & then use the g.c. to do your Christmas shopping when you're ready! Makes saving up easier! Or use the g.c. as a gift for someone instead of it being a savings program! I thought that was a great idea & had to share...

    As for shopping...haven't started that yet as my DD & DS often change their minds as to what they'd like! Last year I did baskets with all sorts of goodies that were free or next to it. No one complained so they must have been ok I may follow suit this year.

    7 months until Christmas!!!
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  6. #36
    Coupify! Granger's Avatar
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    Love Christmas. Bought a few stocking stuffers tonight and put them away.
    "There are more important things--friendship and bravery...."
    -Hermione Granger



  7. #37
    Mastermind bargain_hunter_lola's Avatar
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    Bumping!

    Just getting started on my Christmas shopping and planning. Feeling behind already! lol

    Love all the idea's and I just joined pinterest too. WOW, I was missing out on A LOT!!!
    AmberLab and lucy16076 like this.


  8. #38
    One Awesome Domestic Diva MrsSunshine's Avatar
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    after ALOT of discussion last year, we finally decided were not doing anything this year gift wise. at the least for our parents. more likely to do a donation in their name or scratch cards. they love those. they really have everything they need at 70+ and 80. as for our kids. well. we might just give them money. let them pick out what they want. its so much easier. i even bought a wee 2 foot xmas tree at a garage sale this year. thats all im putting out. heck we may even go away somewhere for xmas.
    Be Strong
    Be True
    Be You.
    Simple as that!

  9. #39
    Mastermind bargain_hunter_lola's Avatar
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    Oooh, I love the idea of going to Hawaii or something on Christmas!

    But with little ones I'll be waiting a long time for that. They want the real thing with snow. lol.

    I'm getting excited though, can't wait to put up my pink tree on my desk (got it for $1 at michaels).

    lucy16076 and PurpleBunny89 like this.


  10. #40
    Mastermind bargain_hunter_lola's Avatar
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    I am making DD a "tickle trunk" for Christmas. She's really into dressing up (turning 4 right before Christmas), so I've been buying any dress up items when I see them. I have a bunch of high heel shoes, fancy gloves, tiara's, wigs and I even found some old halloween left overs at Michael's last year (got a dino, elephant, monkey and cat set, each came with a head set and tail). Hoping to find more after this Halloween!

  11. #41
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    All the male type stocking stuffers have been bought. Dove for Men, Dial, Lever2000 and Vasoline for Men. It was a real hit with the guys last year, so it's going to happen again this year.

    BTW, we have never ever been this organized for Christmas in the past.

    OP, thanks for the thread.

  12. #42
    Canadian Guru jasperandchar's Avatar
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    well late for the party but well on track (lol)...

    Got a whole bunch of stuff for the stockings....

    I'm thinking of buying the boys there own LCD tv's as they have really come down in prices....I could get one for free with my WM Mastercard (lol)....I don't like buying gaming systems as they get outdated so quickly and the games cost an arm and a leg.

    As for my parents we give them US dollars as they are in Arizona for the winter anyways and atleast they can buy what they want as they certainly don't need anything.

    As for my inlaws it usually a token gift along with a GC but may rethink that as last year was a GC year for them. They don't really need anything and what they want we can't afford.

    Hubby is always easy but so expensive....diva
    2019 is the year that we continue to save before we buy!!!

  13. #43
    Canadian Guru jasperandchar's Avatar
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    Does everyone have a set price for who they are buying for?

    We do, I don't know how some people can spend $200-$300.00 on each person, we can't.

    Thanks
    2019 is the year that we continue to save before we buy!!!

  14. #44
    Mastermind bargain_hunter_lola's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jasperandchar View Post
    Does everyone have a set price for who they are buying for?

    We do, I don't know how some people can spend $200-$300.00 on each person, we can't.

    Thanks

    We usually set our immediate family (DH & I and each of the kids) at $300 max each. But I try to get things much cheaper by shopping all year long and using any points/rewards I can.

    Everyone else is $50 max.


  15. #45
    Smart Canuck dreamcatcher1962's Avatar
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    I'm going to try making a few "surprise balls" for christmas and put small silly items in them.
    Looks like a fun stocking stuffer. My DD once told me all the best gifts are in the stockings, lol.
    Saw the idea on pinterest. If you're interested, here's the link.

    http://pinterest.com/pin/95068242104525643/
    DianneS likes this.
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