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Five Under Five

BY Liz Luan

We all love the holiday season… until it comes to emptying our wallets on something that probably won’t even go to good use. It’s safe to say that a majority of the high school students on campus don’t have a steady income, let alone any. With tight budgets, it’s quite difficult to find a store-bought present for each family member or friend that shows effort, love, and thankfulness. Rather than giving your aunt a generic plaid scarf, try one of these ten budget-friendly homemade gifts. Not only can they show your effort and love, but can also keep you from emptying your wallet.


1. For Mom: Customized Tote Bag ($5)

Supplies Needed:

  • Reusable Cotton Bag from a local Dollar Tree ($1)
  • Transfer Paper ($4)

A customized tote bag for books or grocery shopping can be made with only two products! Personally, my mother loves going to the farmers market, so with a handy customized tote bag, she won’t have to limit her products to what her hands can hold.


2. For Sisters: Rings ($4)

Supplies Needed:

  • Jewelry wire ($4)

Classy designs with jewelry wire can be made with easy twists and turns that take less than five minutes.


3. For Brothers: Marbled Keychains ($5)

Supplies Needed:

  • Molding Clay ($3)
  • Metal Keychains
  • Pliers
  • Stamping Set ($2)

This project tends to take a bit more time than the others, but it’s my personal favorite. Every part of it is customizable, whether it’s what is stamped on the keychain or the color of the clay itself. As for metal keyrings, I use pliers to remove keyrings from my old keychains.


4. For Friends: Candles ($2)

Supplies Needed:

  • Colorful Tall Cylinder Wax Candles ($2)
  • Sharp Knife

Be careful when you’re making this gift! Most wax candles are easily cut, but not all are. I would recommend buying colorful candles, but plain white candles have a beautiful, modern look as well.


5. For Teachers: Homemade Chocolate Pretzels ($7)

Supplies Needed:

  • Pretzel Sticks ($1)
  • Meltable Chocolate in Two Colors ($5)
  • Sprinkles or Other Decorations (optional)
  • Treat Bags ($1)

This gift goes a little over the budget, but our teachers deserve it after such a long semester of grading. Decorations that follow the holiday season give a cute and simple look for the pretzels, and are also a delicious snack.

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