Monday, January 4, 2010

When all else fails, get your siblings drunk

You remember the extreme limitations imposed upon my family gift-giving this year, don't you? After trying and failing at a few different ideas for my siblings and their SOs, our highly scientific thought process went something like this:

Without further ado, our Crafty Christmas:

To set the theme, I made booklets for each couple that were printed on cardstock, hole-punched, and tied with holiday ribbon. I forgot to take a photo of the finished products, but here are the jpgs. Read them vertically, and click for a larger version.

Vanilla-infused vodka and homemade vanilla sugar

Jalapeno-infused vodka and a mini Zing Zang bloody mary mix

The spread at my sister's house the next night, where the goodies were liberally sampled:

Being the Photoshop wannabe that I am, I had a blast making the cute labels (thank you DIY blogs with your endless inspiration and templates!). Admittedly, we went over the $20 limit (even before I shipped everything to NC... trying to get past security with four bottles of homemade booze in my purse wasn't my idea of a good time on Christmas morning), but I think it's the effort that counts, don't you? With more advance planning, I know I could've found cheaper vodka bottles and vanilla beans, which were the big expenditures (thanks cheap booze that tastes great when flavored!). Here's the breakdown:

Sugar and Spice Gift Box
Sugar jar: $1.25
Sugar: free from my pantry
Vanilla bean for sugar: $4.99
Two glass bottles for vodka: $9.00
Vodka for both flavors: $7.50
Vanilla bean for vodka: $4.99
Jalapeno for vodka: $.50
Mini Zing Zangs: free (we had these on hand, but they retail for about $5 each)
Printing/cardstock/labels: free

Final cost: $28.23
Crafty Christmas with boozy sibs: Priceless

PS: My sister promptly entered the One-Upsmanship Hall of Fame by opening up her booze box from us and then gifting a painting of our niece on canvas to my brother. I made labels and added things to stuff. Lisa painted Taylor in a beach scene, walking down to the ocean's edge. Food for thought.


  1. ummm are you the next martha stewart because at this rate you're well on your way. there is no way in hell i could have pulled something like that off!! nicely done!

  2. Infused vodka! Great idea. Love all the labels.

  3. I want to come with Christmas with y'all!

  4. hee hee! It was tons of fun. The jalapeno vodka was amazing in a bloody mary (if you like them extra spicy, like we do), but the drink of the night was ginger ale with vanilla vodka in a glass rimmed in vanilla sugar!

    Also, MM, yes you could have done it! I should do a step by step post showing how ridiculously easy it was.

  5. Also, I totally glued the labels on the bottles. Team effort, woohoo!!!

  6. Brilliant! Been eager to see the $10 gifts. Well done!

  7. We loved the gift! Thanks again! So crafty and fun! You've totally inspired us with the infusions and we keep coming up with different stuff we want to try out! Great job, M&T!

  8. Good job Maggie and F-Word (although T, you are totally mis-representing yourself since you are the H-word now)!

    I've taken to making my own vanilla extract for cooking, I think the directions came from Chocolate & Zucchini. Super simple, fill a dark bottle with rum, scrape and insert one or two vanilla beans, and leave in your cupboard for a few months. And totally safe for guzzling while you bake if you happen to be having a bad day.

  9. They look so great! I love the way you pulled it all together. Crafty Christmas can be pretty fun... and I am sure opening gifts was on a whole different dimension as you got to see what everyone made.

  10. You are so clever! I might have to steal this idea for a future gift.

  11. Awesome! Where did you find those glass bottles for your vodka? I make my own vanilla extract and those would be perfect for it!

  12. Hey Grits! The vodka bottles are from the Container Store. They have several styles and sizes there to choose from. Happy shopping!

  13. I, too, can attest to the fabulousness that is jalapeƱo infused vodka! OMG so good! Never underestimate the craftiness of Ms. Adams :)


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