Friday, November 28, 2014

Gift-ivism Season is Upon Us! (A Vegan Food Gifts Giveaway)

Photo by Celine Steen

Gift-ivism
gif·tiv·ism ˈgif tə vizəmˈ
noun: the policy or action of using vigorous gift giving to bring about political or social change. In the case of vegan food gifts, to prove vegan foods can be delicious and fun, and that it is not necessary to kill or torture another living being in order to make a tasty meal or treat.

It's that time of year. The time where we are faced with buying, making, or in any case, giving gifts. I remember being a kid and absolutely thinking how wonderful it was to have a big family, because I got so many presents!  I mean, with divorced parents, I had two families, which meant I had two Christmases! (What's plural for Christmas?) The first year I celebrated Christmas as an adult, living in my own apartment, I had a complete emotional breakdown, because it wasn't until then, had I realized how hard it was on everyone to give so many gifts.


Soon after, my mom's side of the family adopted a "presents only for the kids" rule, followed by a you-can-give-a-present-if-you-want-to-but-only-if-you-make-it rule.  And it can't be expensive.

The year of the bottle cap magnets

On dad's side of the family, we opted for a draw names sort of system, and the gift also had to be home made, but that only lasted a year.  We quickly moved to the let's donate as a family to charity model, and my sister took the lead.  But we still were allowed to give eachother one present...not expensive, usually of the bottle-of-some-sort-of-alcohol variety.

The year of the scarves and homemade cutting boards
(with cookies and candies, of course!)

At home, my husband and I adopted a stocking stuffers only rule, followed the last three years by a new tradition of going to the mall the last few days before christmas, having a few cocktails, and then walking around looking at all the craziness surrounding us.  Holiday lights and a frenzy of shoppers is tremendous fun if you don't really have to go shopping.


Ever since we have adopted these rules. Holidays have been so much more precious, and so much less stressful.  Instead of worrying if we have enough money to get everyone a gift, we concentrate more on getting together and loving eachother.  It's pretty awesome.

I can't help myself.  I absolutely love the cheesy cello bags and
cheap festive plates from the dollar store.
But, I admit, I really love to give presents during the holidays.  So, I take advantage of the homemade rule, and every year I turn my kitchen into a cookie baking, candy making, drink mix mixing, pickle canning, liqueur brewing factory.

It's so much fun to give DIY vegan food gifts to people.  Especially when gifting to non-vegans. It puts the word, the idea, and, of course, the undeniably delicious treat right in front of their face and plants the seed of compassion.  Who knew a cookie had so much power?

Peanut Butter Truffles in homemade truffle gift boxes from Vegan Food Gifts

The idea of gift-ivism is what sparked my writing of Vegan Food Gifts.  I have always loved making presents. And I had (have) tons of craft books, yarn, fabric, beads, paints, mod-podge, scrap booking supplies (I know, I know) and just about any other crafting supply you could think of.  I wanted to share how easy it was to make really awesome vegan food gifts.

I started compiling all of the gifts I had made and given over the years and started working on new and easy projects.  I partnered up with Kurt Halsey to do all of the designing of the scannable gift tags and recipe cards, and to illustrate the how to instructions for the crafts and packaging portion of the book.

Various  DIY gifts in jars and bottles from Vegan Food Gifts

All in all there are over 100 ideas for DIY projects to give away to friends and family.  I would like to kick off this gift-ivism season by giving away a copy of Vegan Food Gifts to one person anywhere in the world.  Just follow the prompts in the widget below and I will pick a winner on Sunday, December 7, at 7:00pm PST.

And for thiose of you who don't win your own copy, here are a bunch of links to projects you can make rignt here on JustTheFood.com:

Jalapeno Jam (my favorite!)
Truffle Gift Box (with bonus peppermint truffle recipe)
Homemade Spicy Dill Pickles (super easy and a great gifts for the menfolk!)


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All recipes written by me, Joni Marie Newman, unless otherwise noted. Please feel free to refer to or link back to any of my recipes, but please ask for permission, and remember to give credit when reprinting recipes in their entirety. I do provide links to affiliate programs (such as Amazon) in which I receive a small commission for items purchased. I do not provide paid reviews. All reviews done on products or books are of my own unsolicited opinion. On occasion I may receive a book or product to review. I will note when this is the case, but rest assured, it will not affect the authenticity of my review. Thanks!--Joni