18 November 2011

Christmas: Baked gifts, Online shopping, Gift games/ alternatives, Recipe

Put the joy back into the festive season
If you often celebrate Christmas with your extended family, buying presents and being organised for Christmas can be more stressful than enjoyable.  Of course it is always nice to give and receive presents but is it worth the stress?  Often buying something that your extended family member, who you may not know very well, needs or wants, without it being exchanged after Christmas (even after all the effort it took you to buy it), can be very difficult and stressful.  Put the fun back into Christmas and perhaps try one of the suggestions below.

Make Yummy Gifts
Making presents can be time consuming but I find it a lot less stressful than going to the mall!  I love cooking and if you do too why not make some yummy things for your loved ones this Christmas?

This website has lots of food gift ideas

I think labne (yoghurt cheese) is delicious gift idea and it looks beautiful.  Caramelised onion marmalade is a great gift also and adds flavour to so many dishes.

See here for how to make labne.

See here for how to make caramelised onion marmalade

Make your own caramel (dulce de leche).  This is so decadent and beautiful and can be used in lots of sweet recipes, or you can stir it through ice-cream, or make caramel melting moments and spoon it between shortbread!

Or for a healthier gift idea, why not make some bliss balls?

Shop online
So much less stress involved in shopping online than going to the Mall which is so crazy at this time of year.

For Australian, handmade arts and craft goods have a look at:

For something fair trade, have a look at Oxfam

Kris Kringle
Sometimes it can take some coercing of other family members to come around to the idea of Kris Kringle, but once you have done the switch you won’t look back!  Remember to set a dollar limit for how much you will spend on each other...
  1. Put all names of those participating in a hat
  2. Pull out a name
  3. Keep it a secret
If Kris Kringle isn’t your thing why not try setting a dollar limit amongst friends and family anyway?

Dirty Santa Game
Another great present game is what is know as the “Dirty Santa Game”.
  1. Everyone buys and wraps up a present (best to set a dollar limit to $10 or whatever you choose), it doesn’t matter what it is. It can be funny, silly, useful...
  2. Write numbers on little pieces of paper corresponding to how many people there are and put them in a hat.
  3. The person with number one gets to choose their present first
  4. The person with number two can decide to open a new present or to take number one’s present
  5. Each time someone gets up, they have their choice of one of the unwrapped gifts or one of the wrapped ones.
  6. If a person gets their gift taken from them, they go back up to choose an unwrapped one. It goes on until everyone has a gift.

Spend time with Friends
Instead of buying lots of presents for all of your friends it might be nice to suggest that you all put some money aside and agree on spending time together after Christmas and doing something different that you will all enjoy, like going out for dinner, to the theatre, or to a concert...  It definitely takes the stress out of Christmas...  Less presents to buy and you will have a memorable time together.

Recipe: Summertime Salad
For a Christmas mango salad recipe suggestion see:

This post is brought to you by Kristie Ussher, acupuncturist and Chinese medicine herbalist at Ocean Acupuncture in Curl Curl on Sydney's Northern Beaches.

Ocean Acupuncture is a natural medicine centre of independent health practitioners. The views expressed in this blog are the author's only and do not necessarily reflect the views of the other Ocean Acupuncture practitioners.
The information presented in this blog, and on the Ocean Acupuncture website, is for interest and educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for health or medical information or advice. For health or medical advice, please consult your health professional.

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