Homemade treats make wonderful gifts anytime of the year!

This week the Juice discussion is about giving more and getting more out of relationships.  I watched the video with Christine Koh from Boston Mamas and she had some great tips for how to reach out to others including practicing random acts of kindness and making homemade gifts for friends.  As a mom to three, I wanted to be able to incorporate both of these activities into meaningful lessons for my kids on a regular basis.  That's when we came up with the idea of cookie baskets.

It's a simple concept really.  My kids love making homemade cookies so every so often we'll double the batch we're making, put the extras into a nice basket and then share with neighbors and friends.  Since I'm an organizing junkie with a crazy PASSION for baskets and containers I have an abundance of pretty wicker baskets in my basement that I keep specifically for this purpose.  I'm always on the lookout for them at garage sales and thrift shops and can often find them at great prices.  After we've added a pretty flower or two, or maybe even a few candies, we head on out to drop them off.  Everyone is very appreciative.  It's a small thing but it's nice to know my kids are learning generosity at such young ages and hopefully it will be something that carries with them into adulthood.

Some of our favorite cookie recipes are:

Best Big, Fat, Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

We've also done this with biscuits and cinnamon buns as well.  Favorites are:

Cheddar Dill Biscuits

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls (using biscuit dough)

Another wonderful, easy and inexpensive gift idea for any time of the year for friends and neighbors are these yummy popcorn recipes from Homebased Mom.

Mother Goose Popcorn - this would be perfect colored to suit any occasion

White Chocolate Popcorn

I'm also thinking this simple Peanut Butter Honey Fudge recipe with only three ingredients would make a super gift idea as well year round.  Or how about these "I can stop drooling" Cookies and Cream Rice Crispy Treats.  Oh my word and they only take five minutes to prepare!

It doesn't have to be a lot or even extravagant.  The message is to let someone know you are thinking of them and you value their friendship.  It doesn't get any easier than that!

So often we only think of giving homemade treats at Christmas time but I say why wait until Christmas, surprise a friend today!  Get your kids involved and have fun :)

Do you have any other easy homemade treat gift suggestions?

PS:  Don't forget to enter the Juice giveaway to win a Samsung 10.2 Megapixel Digital Camera!

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