By Dara Ekanger
It’s always challenging to come up with Christmas gifts for the male members of our family … especially inexpensive gifts that the kids can make themselves. Grandmas and aunts are easy—handmade jewelry, decorative items, even little sewing projects are received with joy and enthusiasm, but what to create for those beloved uncles, grandpas, brothers, male cousins, and daddy?
Well, you know what they say: “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” With that in mind, last year my 7-year-old daughter and I hit on a winner!
It started off when we were delicately probing for gift ideas and my sister-in-law mentioned that she was no longer buying socks for her four teenage sons, and that’s what they were requesting for Christmas!
Hmm … there had to be a way to fulfill their wish and make it unique too. The creative juices started flowing.
Soon, we were headed to the store where we picked up several bags of white ankle-high men’s socks and extra-large chocolate candy bars … enough for four cousins, three uncles, two grandpas, and one special daddy.
Back at home, we dug through the craft supplies and found googly eyes, orange buttons, glue, rubber bands, and assorted “masculine” fabric. My daughter carefully put one sock inside the other, slid a chocolate bar inside, smoothed out the wrinkles, and twisted the top shut with a rubber band. Then, with a little assistance, she cut out a 9″x5″ piece of fabric and a matching 12″x1″ strip of fabric. Then the fun really began!
She tied the narrower strip of fabric about two-thirds of the way up the sock. Then she cut fringes about an inch deep into the long side of the 9″x5″ piece of fabric and tied it around the top of the socks, fringes pointing up, covering the rubber band. A couple of drops of well-placed glue, googly eyes and button noses applied, and we had adorable snowmen that were functional and edible to boot!
All of the men/boys were thrilled with their gifts and my daughter was thrilled that she was able to make something herself to show her love for her wonderful family members!
Of course, chocolate snowmen aren’t just for men. Ladies’ socks would work equally well. And why just snowmen? Buy brown socks and brown pipe cleaners and see if your kids can create Rudolph the Reindeer or any of his friends.
These adorable creations would make perfect and inexpensive gifts for Sunday School teachers, coaches, friends, and neighbors. Break out the crafting supplies and let your kids’ imaginations go wild!
Dara Ekanger is a homeschooling mother of three living with her children and hunter-husband, Talmage, in the frozen tundra of South Dakota. She helps coordinate her local homeschool organization; loves gardening, Pride and Prejudice, and getting paid to read fabulous Molly Green Magazine articles as the publication’s senior editor.