Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Works for Me Wednesday - Frugal Graduation Gift

I'm going to try participating in Works for Me Wednesday hosted by Rocks in my Dryer. I get tons of good tips and tricks from this weekly feature and I'm excited to get in on the action!

A's cousin is graduating from high school next week in Minnesota. We wanted to give him a nice gift, but didn't want to spend a fortune doing so. He's going to be attending a University that's not far from his home, so he's not "going away" to college. Therefore a laundry gift basket, dorm room kitchen, and a fleece blanket for his dorm room weren't exactly practical. I received a popcorn bowl when I went away to college and thought I could adapt this idea so that it's appropriate for any graduate attending college - whether they're leaving home in the process or not.

Presenting...the Late-Night Study Session Survival Kit! Any college student can count on having more than a few late-night study sessions, so this should come in very handy.

I found all of this stuff at the Dollar Store and only spent $7.00. I bought the clear bag at Michaels and it was only $1 so this basket came together for $8.00 out of pocket (a couple of the items are things we already had in our pantry). I was so excited to find the plastic popcorn bowl at the Dollar store - it's perfect! However, if you can't find an official "popcorn bowl", you can certainly just use a large plastic bowl instead. Here's what makes up the rest of the gift:

- Big cup o' noodles (is below the popcorn so you can't see it)
- Twizzlers
- Sunflower seeds
- 5 bags of popcorn (we already had these)
- Ceramic mug with 5 individual servings of cocoa (already had the cocoa too)
- Box of Everlasting Gobstoppers candy - I made a tag for this that says "For those everlasting study sessions"
- Two candles (you can't see these in the photo) with a wick at both ends (buy a taper candle and remove about an inch of the wax from the bottom, being careful not to cut through the wick) - I made a tag for these that says "To use when you're burning the candle at both ends - literally"
- Toothpicks (in front of the cocoa) - tag reads "To prop your eyelids open when it's so late you can't stay awake"

You could vary the items based on what your store has in stock, the recipient's personal tastes, etc. I put the whole thing in the large basket bag from Michaels, tied it up with ribbon in his collegiate colors, and attached a tag that says "Late-Night Study Session Survival Kit." Voila - an attractive, practical, and frugal graduation gift - it definitely works for me!

For more Works for Me Wednesday ideas, head over to Rocks in my Dryer!


Amy said...

What a cute idea! We have several graduations coming up - I'm going to have to make some.

Shari Ellen said...

This is just the kind of idea that I love - creative and frugal.

JAN said...

I love this idea!
Thanks for sharing!

Shalee said...

This is a fabulous idea!

Shannon said...

Great idea!

Lisa said...

That's a very cute idea!

Melissa~ said...

Oh what a fantastic idea! It looks so cute too!

Hey thanks for posting my flower button!

♥ Melissa~
Pink Paper Peppermints

Ginny said...

I love these! If you are looking for a smaller gift, they make a smaller bucket as well. I made 2 of these as an extra Christmas gift to my daughters. They always turn out so cute, love that big bucket you found!

Tara said...

How cute!!!!!!!!! I love it!! Thanks for posting!!!!!

jen said...

That's so perfect! You could use that for so many different occasions, too.

You could also add a redbox coupon code (you get them free for signing up for email updates) and have a movie night gift for cheap!

Thanks for the tip!