8 Frugal Family Gift Ideas


By Molly Green

 

One of my favorite gift-giving strategies is to focus on family gifts rather than individual gifts. This approach is an effective means of saving both time and money, two very important resources, especially this time of year. Deciding on one large present is much quicker than choosing several individual gifts. One large gift is often less expensive and of better quality than several smaller, individual gifts. A family-oriented gift also encourages families to take time to have some fun together and enjoy one another rather than a “trinket” gift for each person. 

A little creativity in presentation can make all the difference between an average gift and a special one, so be creative. Over the years, I’ve built up a repertoire of gifts families love to receive. Take a moment to see if some of these gift ideas aren’t perfect for you. Present it with some creative packaging, I will guarantee you some happy gift recipients.

Movie night

The easiest and least expensive on the list is the Family Movie Night package. Take a white cardboard paint tub from the hardware store and fill it with a two-liter soft drink, several bags of microwave popcorn, some large boxes of candy from the dollar store and a movie rental coupon. Create a gift card to look like a strip of film or ticket stub. A tub like this can be made for well under $10 and is easy to mass produce if you have several families you’d like to remember. Bump it up a notch by using a large glass, plastic or metal bowl and including DVD(s) rather than a rental certificate. 

Super sundaes

Who doesn’t love ice cream—especially when you get to make it just the way you like it? This gift looks extra special when presented in a big basket (from the dollar store, of course). Include a bunch of bananas, various toppings, sauces, nuts, a jar of Maraschino cherries and a $10 grocery store certificate for the purchase of ice cream and toppings. Search your dollar store for inexpensive sundae glasses, banana split dishes or dessert spoons to give the gift some extra punch. Create a gift card that looks like a banana or tub of ice cream. 

Christmas morning 

We had a friend who gave us the same gift every year, and I always looked forward to it with eager anticipation. On Christmas Eve day, she would deliver her homemade version of Cinnabons along with a Mason jar of homemade hot chocolate mix. These yummy treats were to be enjoyed on Christmas morning. This gift was inexpensive and simple, but always my favorite to receive.

Fun and games

A family game night package can include inexpensive card games or a more expensive board game. Visit a game store, and you’ll find a surprisingly large selection of both types. Snacks could range from popcorn and candy to cheese, sausage and crackers to a batch of your favorite brownies or cookies.  

Get corny 

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love popcorn. Fortunately, it’s not too difficult to put together a gourmet popcorn gift basket. Make some caramel corn or popcorn balls, but don’t stop there. Search the Internet for “flavored popcorn recipes” and find everything from Jello-flavored, to pizza, ranch or cinnamon popcorn. Package each flavor in its own tin, box or basket and label appropriately. You can even go the extra mile and include recipes so the family can recreate their favorites.

Winter warm-up

Buy a great puzzle the family can work together. Include a cute and comfy pair of socks for everyone and some hot chocolate, and you’ve got the makings for a cozy winter evening. Include a wonderful apple pie or vanilla-scented candle to help set the mood. You could even bake them a real apple pie, for that matter.

Sports fan fun

Sports fans will appreciate a gift based around their favorite team or sport. Set the tone with a homemade Sports Fan Hand and include a mini-football, basketball or homemade pompoms. Depending on the sport being highlighted, you might include seat cushions, hand warmers, sun visors or knit caps, all in appropriate colors. Be sure to include water bottles, trail mix and peanuts.

Book basket

Do you have an active homeschooler or a family of book lovers? What about putting together a package with personalized bookmarks and book plates? These elastic bookmarks are unique and easy to make. An Internet search for “printable book plates” will provide you with lots of options. You could even make your own from scrapbooking papers or buy some at your local bookstore. Include a great family read-aloud or a favorite book on CD. 

Be the first to review this item!


Bookmark this

09 Aug 2016


Recent Articles more articles

Parkview’s Junior Beta Club Wins at Convention

in Sponsored Content

The Junior Beta Club from Parkview Baptist School won multiple awards at this year’s convention. Over 250 Junior Beta Clubs from across Louisiana gathered in Lafayette at the Cajundome for various competitions in early February. Twenty-seven members

Rare Disease Awareness Day is February 29, 2020

in Health and Wellness, Family Life, Local News

Rare Disease Awareness Day is February 29, 2020, and founder of nonprofit Garage 10, Ashley Gravois, will be selling wristbands to raise awareness and funds. Each bracelet will be sold with details about the organization and statistics on rare disea

Rolling with the Good Times: Navigating Baton Rouge’s Mardi Gras with Kids

in Things To Do, Ellen Mecholsky

When my husband and I moved to Baton Rouge, we had absolutely no idea about Mardi Gras. I mean, sure, we had heard of “Fat Tuesday” and had the vague sense that beads were involved, but the Louisiana Mardi Gras EXPERIENCE was a complete unknown. That

Valentine’s Day: The Holiday I Love to Hate

in Holidays, Family Life, Amy Delaney

When ranking the best holidays, Valentine’s Day has always been near the very bottom for me. My love/hate relationship with this lovely holiday began way back in high school. I was never the girl with lots of admirers, so I remember the flowers, cand

Featured Listings more listings

Louisiana Art & Science Museum

Louisiana Art & Science Museum

in Party Venues

Being a princess for a day, digging for dinosaurs, becoming a pirate...whatever your child is dreaming about for his or her next birthday, the Louisiana Art & Science Museum has it. Our birthday parties feature a variety of well­-loved themes in a un

Newsletter