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Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Um, I'm Thinking of Christmas Already

Confessions, I am planning Christmas 2017 already.

I found these canning jars on closeout at Fred Meyer a week ago, for $6.69/dozen. That's 55 cents per jar. I know, I can get canning jars for 29 cents each at Goodwill. But, those don't have brand new lids.

To give you a cost comparison --The value of the lids and bands, alone, is about $3.59 (at Target, for a dozen regular lids and bands). At Target's price for the lids, plus Goodwill's price for lid-less jars, these jars, with brand-new lids would have cost 59 cents each (4 cents more than this case of new jars/lids), if I had bought them that way.

In addition, this particular jar size is hard to come by, second-hand. It's the 4-ounce squat jar. This size is not terribly practical for preserves for the family. However, it's the perfect size for many homemade gifts.

One of my gift plans is homemade beeswax candles. I've been acquiring beeswax from Michael's when I have 60% off coupons. I have two pounds, so far, which should be enough to make about 8 candles in these jars.

If I use some of these jars, along with my coupon-purchased beeswax, I could make beeswax candles for about $2.75 each, wicks included.

This similar beeswax jar candle sells for $6, plus $7.00 shipping, on Amazon. And that's a "good" price for beeswax candles.

Anyways, am I the only one thinking about Christmas, already?


  1. Nope. Not thinking about Christmas yet. Trying to figure out where to hang some of our artwork while we get ready for an open house this weekend with about 60 people.

    Wish I had a plan like you do. Maybe someday.

    1. Hi live and learn,
      oh my goodness, that is a big crowd! I hope all goes well, and that things come together such that you can just enjoy being with family and friends. Have a great day, live and learn.

  2. Yep! You may be. But good for you! Summer is looming so I'm figuring out camps/costs/other inexpensive activities. Then it will be back to school stuff. Then maybe Christmas. If I find something great along the way I may put it aside for Christmas, though.

    1. Hi Cat,
      so I'm a little ahead on the calendar. It doesn't help that Seattle can't seem to break out of this rain pattern, this spring. It feels autumnal, here. I wasn't actively seeking Christmas, but opportunities arose, and put my mind there.
      Have a great day, Cat!

  3. Yes,,already doing some crocheting. Also, my strawberries are now ripening and it will soon be time to make jam that a good part will be for gifts. And I am keeping my eyes open for ideas that I can do that will be useful to the recipient and economical and easy for me to make.
    On another note, I am blown away at how expensive the jar lids, flats and jars are. I give away several jars of jam yearly. A few give me back the empty jar and ring so I can reuse them. You can bet they stay on my list of jam recipients.
    I think it would be so nice if readers submitted ideas they have or have used for nice gifts to make or craft for gifts for Christmas, birthdays, or other special occasions we give gifts. I know I am one that would certainly welcome new ideas. I sure always enjoy the ideas you share with us and am often inspired to be a copycat:). Thanks!

    1. Hi Linda,
      The lids especially seem to have gotten expensive in the last 10 years or so. That's nice that a few of the people on your list have given you back the jars/rings. I've only gotten jars back in exchanges with others. I sure hope that people don't put the jars in their recycle bin, but at least donate them to thrift stores if not using them.
      Your crochet work and jam will make lovely gifts. Have fun putting it all together. And you're right, that's an excellent idea to have people post gift ideas that they intend, have done or are considering. Hmmm thinking on that one.
      Have a great day Linda!

    2. Yeah. I've often wondered what happens to my jars that don't get returned. My jams go far & wide, so I don't feel right about asking to get the jars back, but my fruit jars I only distribute to family & those who are in need of a meal at our church. I've starting labeling these on the bottoms with my name, as a hint that I need them back. Melissa

    3. Hi Melissa,
      I think that's a really great idea to label the jars on the bottom, especially for family and close friends. I'm going to remember that.
      Have a wonderful day, Melissa!

  4. Very good idea!!! I think of Christmas year round! And the older I get, the faster it arrives!!

    1. Hi Penpen,
      It does seem to come sooner each year! I can't believe that May is half over already!
      Have a great day!

  5. Good Job on the planning ahead. We don't do any kind of gift giving or exchanges anymore. No, I'm not thinking of Christmas just yet. I have longed for spring and summer and I'm going to enjoy this right now and worry about winter when I need to.

    I hope to make plenty of strawberry/rhubarb jam for the freezer. I might even add some blueberries since a Strawb/rhub/blub jam was very popular this winter. Later I'll do peach jam since that also is very popular. Probably not enough to give away though.


    1. Hi Alice,
      if only the weather would cooperate where I live, I might be able to think about spring and summer, too!
      Strawberry/rhubarb/blueberry jam sounds really delicious. I love blueberry in just about everything. I hope you are able to make lots of jam for your freezer this year.
      Enjoy the lovely weather, Alice!

  6. I think it's fabulous that you are thinking about Christmas already. I have my sights on back to school needs, so I'm right there with you.
    My boss makes huge amounts of jam. One day a co worker was in the library when I returned a jar and the coworker said, "You can REUSE those??" If there is an appropriate was to let people know you welcome the jar if they don't have a use, I think that's OK!

    1. I usually say to someone that I am likely to regift again with more jam..."if you return it, I just might refill it." That is either usually either responded to by a smile or a deer in the headlights you can reuse this thing??? Ha!

    2. Hi Jen,
      Oh my goodness. I guess that just shows you how far removed we are becoming as a culture, from the past of our great-grandmothers. My own mother didn't make jam every year, but her box of jars sat on the floor of the pantry. I think maybe a lot of people don't have that memory, so thinking a canning jar could be used again is a novel thought to them.

      Great job, thinking ahead to school needs. August rolls around so quickly. Have a great day, Jen!

    3. Hi Linda,
      I love that! That phrase would make a great label for the bottom of jars, as Melissa says she labels ones going to family and close friends.
      Have a wonderful day, Linda!


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