Home-made gifts with a technological twist
Making gifts with your children is a wonderful way of spending time with them and giving them something creative to do, and the recipient will always appreciate the results of the effort that has gone into them! A hand-drawn card from your grand-daughter means so much more than a shop-bought one, and a Mother’s Day card that your son has decorated with a picture resembling a demented scarecrow (but is meant to be you!) is something you will treasure forever.
Making sweets or a tin of biscuits and wrapping them up in a hand-decorated box, or planting up a pot with pretty flowers are gifts that have been given for years and still bring delight. However, there’s a new wave of online tools that can give you the ability to create a whole new generation of thoughtful presents.
Photo books are starting to become more familiar and less expensive, and are now easy to design and edit yourself. You can select photos with your children and upload them to the online template, then add captions, stories or messages. You can get the kids to write the words and scan these into the book, or let them write directly onto your screen if you have one with the capability. You can include pictures the children have drawn, poems they’ve written, anything that will add that personal touch and make the book more special.
Videos and DVDs
The accessibility of video cameras on smartphones means you don’t have to have specialist equipment to shoot your own film. The kids could act out a play, or do a variety show where they play music, dance, or do magic tricks – whatever they have a talent for. You could record them riding a pony, or their bike, and there are editing tools that allow you to turn your initial recording into an artistic masterpiece without too much difficulty.
If the children are musically talented, they could record their own CD, playing the music and singing, using songs they know or even composing their own. Once you’ve got your recording downloaded onto a disc, you can give it a professional feel by using an album cover maker to produce a sleeve for the disc with your own pictures and track listings.
There is an ever-increasing variety of objects that can be printed with a personalised message, from the familiar mugs, calendars and t-shirts to wall art, jewellery and baby clothes. For a project with your children, you need to create a design for your chosen object that you can then upload to the printing site. A drawing of the person who will be receiving the gift, or something they love like a pet or a particular food are good ideas, but the only limit is your child’s’ imagination.
These are just a few ideas out of the many clever ways to use technology and online resources to make very special gifts that your children will enjoy making and giving.
Look for more ideas online and have fun getting creative together.