Thursday, December 18, 2014

homemade christmas {part 3}

We like doing little homemade gifts for the extended family since we can't afford to buy everyone something. Even though it's not an expectation to be given a present, we do enjoy giving them. In 2012 we made Elden's first ornament for everyone. In 2013, we made homemade hot chocolate powder in mason jars to give away. This year we're taking a little bit of a different approach--instead of making one thing per family we're giving one thing to the women and one to the men. I wanted to try homemade whipped body butter because winters in Ohio are nothing if not brutal on the skin. I also needed the shea butter for Jon's shave soap and the rest of the ingredients were sold from the same online retailer I used to get his, so two birds. I used this recipe, which I reiterated below.

Ingredients (I got everything except the coconut, olive and essential oils from Bulk Apothecary)
1/2 c. shea butter
1/2 c. cocoa butter
1/2 c. coconut oil
1/2 c. olive oil
essential oils for scent
glass bowl

Place everything except the essential oil in the glass bowl, which should be sitting in a hot bath over low heat on the stove (just like the shave soap).
Stir constantly until completely melted.
Remove from heat. Add essential oil for the desired scent and mix it in; place in fridge until it sets but doesn't get TOO hard. It actually took mine a good couple of hours to get to the point where I thought it was ready.
Remove from fridge. Using a hand mixer (and spatula to scrape the sides of the bowl), whip for 10 minutes until fluffy. The original recipe then suggested returning the mixture to the fridge for ten minutes to set, but I was worried if I did this it would be too hard to scoop into the individual glass jars I had on hand (thank you, Dollar Spot at Target!). I divided the body butter into the jars--this recipe made four; I need to do another batch--placed the lids on them, and returned them to the fridge to set.
They weren't quite as fluffy as I would have liked but I think I probably only whipped them for about 5-7 minutes so maybe those last few minutes would have made a big difference. In any case, I'm really happy with how they turned out and I'm going to finish these with a label of some sort that I haven't decided on yet.

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