10 January 2012

Handmade Holiday: Sugar and Spice

Continuing with covering our handmade holiday this past year, (and hopefully being done soon and moving on with all the fun things we've been up to since!) we made some yummy rubs, soothing bath salts, and herbed olive oils. I made a couple of these rub sets, and I really wish I'd made some for us, too! They turned out pretty delicious, and now I am going to have to make some more.

I searched around the internet for blends that sounded tasty, and tried a few out. I used herbs from our garden and our little blade grinder to make them. I was happy to see them all come out different colours, too, made for neat little sets. These are the recipes I ended up following. They are "meat rubs", but, in reality, they are spice blends and are good sprinkled on all sorts of things, or used on tofu, and seitan, too.

We bought some little spice canisters, slapped some canning labels on them, and packed them up with some basic directions on portioning and so forth.

We also used dried herbs from our garden to make a few sets of herbed olive oils. They are so, so good made with freshly dried herbs! After the response we got from my sister-in-law and brother-in-law when gifting them a set for their wedding, we thought we could spread them around a bit more. I bought empty oil jars, filled them with herbs, and topped them up with extra virgin olive oil. I tied labels around their necks telling what each bottle contained.

Oh, the labels... I just bought a large piece of cardstock that was gold on one side and silver on the other, cut one tag shape to use as a pattern, then traced and cut the rest, using a hole punch on one side.

To that sister-in-law and brother-in-law, we made "refills" for the bottles we gave them before. We put them in containers they can hopefully use in their kitchen, and included a stainless steel funnel.

I also made quite a few jars of organic bath salts. My little ones love both making the bath salts, and also the dumping into the bath and mixing it around. I was going to try to describe to you here how we make them, but I think another tutorial is in call. I know I make the basic recipe relatively the same, and mostly just change what scents we put in, but I will have to pay attention next time we make it to what those proportions actually are, and get back to you. :) We Christmased this batch up with nutmeg, cinnamon, clove, and ginger until it smelled so much like gingerbread cookies that Kaia wanted to eat it, and Katalin did actually try it. (Not so great tasting, actually.)

I wrote directions for use, and the list of ingredients on the underside of the labels.

I think I can wrap of the holidays (mid-January!) in another post, maaayyybbbeee two, and then I can tell you about all the fun things I've been working on for Miss Kaia's Birthday party, in which she will be a unicorn, her friends fairies and dragons, and mushroom, rainbow, and castle decorations abound!


  1. I love this! I am definitely going to enjoy experimenting with the different variations and possibilities. And what a nice gift for friends and family too. Luv, Luv!

  2. Wonderful gifts, the spice rubs look delicious. Your daughter's party sounds like it going to be fun!

  3. Your gifts are beautiful. I love them. You have given me some great ideas. I am gladly following you now.

  4. Thank you! The gifts were all well received, (or, at least, they pretended, ;) )

    Yay! for new followers, I don't have many, glad to have you. :)

    And I am *so* looking forward to my daughter's birthday party, with my fingers crossed at the same time to get everything done and pulled together in time.


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