They say it’s better to give than receive, but living up to the old adage can be expensive. This holiday season, keep your wallet full—and your stress level at a minimum—by going the DIY route with your gift-giving. You don’t have to be an expert crafter or pro chef to create a gift that’s memorable and meaningful, and these ideas are proof—even if you're putting them together at the very last minute!
Put together a gift basket. Who wouldn’t want to receive a beautifully presented gift basket during the holidays? You can customize a gift basket for every recipient on your gift list, from the foodie to the spa-goer. After deciding on a theme, grab a few inexpensive wicker baskets from the craft store, then fill it with goodies that follow the theme. For the home chef, for example, you could fill the basket with a dish towel, oven mitt, gourmet non-perishables, and a cook book.
Whip up something sweet. The holiday season isn’t complete without a bite of a homemade treat, so pick a recipe that’s easy to make in large batches, and get to work! Fudge, caramels, brownies, and cookies are always welcome gifts, especially when presented in a whimsical tin or jar that can be reused after the treat is gone.
Treat them to a day at the (home) spa. Everyone could use some tranquility during hectic holiday season, so give the gift of R&R in the form of bath and body treatments. Sugar scrubs, bath bombs, and soaps are surprisingly easy to make, and the ingredients are inexpensive and readily available. Arrange the goods in a beautiful glass jar tied with a ribbon.
66 DIY Christmas Gifts to Add Heart to Your Holiday [Good Housekeeping]
85 DIY Christmas Gifts That'll Mean so Much to Your Friends and Family [Country Living]
60 DIY Christmas Presents Your Friends and Family Won't Re-Gift [House Beautiful]
Located within the Silver Spring Whole Foods, PLNT Burger is a fast-casual burger joint with an entirely plant-based menu. But don't mistake this for some kind of health-food salad bar. PLNT wouldn't have the overwhelmingly positive scores that it has on sites like Yelp and UrbanSpoon if it couldn't make great-tasting burgers, fries, and milkshakes that stand on their own. DC celebrity chef Spike Mendelsohn serves as both the owner and culinary director, and helms an operation that utilizes products that are appealing to vegans and carnivores alike. The burgers come in a range of varieties, from your basic cheeseburger to a mouth-watering double-barbecue mushroom bacon burger.
If you don't feel like a traditional sandwich, you can drop the bun and order anything in a chard wrap, or choose an all-green meal from the rotating salad menu. And make sure to order yourself a side of Bloomies (bite-sized fried onions) or some herbed fries on the side.
Brookside Garden’s Garden of Lights is a nature lover's winter wonderland. Each year, the beautiful gardens transform with one million twinkling lights to highlight the current structures and make new art forms. Billowing flowers, colorful animals, and other wonders of nature are created with expert precision, along with enhancement to the already-breathtaking trees, fountains, and wintery scenes. After a brisk walk through the outdoor gardens, be sure to visit the Visitor’s Center to grab a hot drink, and then the Conservatory to see the model train chugging through a seasonal landscape. You can even grab a few last-minute presents at the gift shop.
The Garden of Lights is in its 22nd year of bringing the holidays to life, and is a tradition that your family will look forward to seeing year after year. Visit Brookside Gardens in nearby Wheaton, Maryland, just a few miles north on the MD-97. Admissions begin at 5:30 p.m. nightly to take advantage of the dusky evening hours, and continue until 9 p.m. (select days until 10 p.m.)Read More