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Handmade versus Store-Bought Gifts

kawaiidaigakusei at 12:00AM, Dec. 15, 2014

The tradition of creating handmade gifts began sometime in elementary school when it was not only appropriate, but expected, to give our parents original creations. Eventually, a handmade knick-knack has a difficult time competing with the latest smart phone or drawing tablet and is pushed aside to make room for other items. I have seldom heard of a grade-school aged kid write “handmade arts and crafts” at the top of their gift wish list.

As webcomic creators, we are gifted with the ability to draw and create original art. Irregardless, more often than not, around the holidays, we find ourselves scrambling to find the same mass-produced merchandise as every other crazed mall shopper. The truth is, homemade presents and original art are absolutely awesome because more thought is placed into the gift when there is a specific recipient in mind.

So, the next time you are faced with the decision of what to buy or give at the next Hanukkah or Christmas gift exchange, think about creating original webcomic art, framing a photograph, or a making a handmade treasure from scratch and it will make the holiday a bit more special.

Do we have any handmade gift purists? Or is getting the latest gadget the best part of the season?

Happy Early Chanukah, Ducks! Eat lots of latkes and donuts cooked in lots of oil on Tuesday.


The Secret Santa gift exchange is now under way in the forums and the gift art submissions have already started. You can check out the gifts people have been receiving even if you did not sign-up to participate this year (Yes, I mean, YOU!).


Remember, if you have signed up and know who is going to receive your gift art, please turn it in by December 25th, 2014, so the Dead Beat Watch committee does not have to disqualify you from next year's Secret Santa art exchange.


This week I decided on the simple rich, decadence that only drinking hot chocolate can provide. This is the best drink to warm up on a cold night, and a small amount goes along way because it is meant to be sipped slowly. Compared to regular hot chocolate, this recipe includes a bit of cornstarch to achieve the extra thick drinking consistency.

Thick, Drinking Hot Chocolate

3 cups milk
1 cup evaporated milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
Pinch ground cinnamon

What's Quacking?
Do you have any original art to contribute to our stock image database, announcements, community projects, ideas, news, or milestones to report? Please leave general comments below or send a PQ to kawaiidaigakusei. Email me at kawaiidaigakusei(at)gmail(dot)com.



HippieVan at 4:11PM, Dec. 15, 2014

I like to do both! Hand-made presents are definitely special, but I think store-bought presents can be special as well. Throughout the year, when someone mentions something they've been wanting or I just happen to see something that someone would like, I note it down. Then when it comes time for Christmas or a birthday, I just take out my list and I can get my loved ones awesome and unexpected presents. This year for my little sister I made her a doll of Naboo from the Mighty Boosh (to go along with last year's Vince doll) and also bought her a bunch of little things. :)

usedbooks at 9:22AM, Dec. 15, 2014

I've been broke for too many Christmases. Mostly just for my parents, but I gift old paintings I made. One year, I wrote my mom a poem and put it in a cheap frame with dried flowers I had from my plant taxonomy class. I've gifted old textbooks from literature class. I wish I could say it was thoughtful, but it's just me being broke. :P This year, I am giving Mom a painting I won (like a door prize) at an employee meeting this summer.

KimLuster at 6:31AM, Dec. 15, 2014

What a great topic here!! . Hand-made Gifts have become the special way our family shows we're trying haha... We still buy all the mass-merchandise so many do at Christmas, but we also have some traditions they can't replace... . For example, we have a big get-together every Christmas and everyone is strongly encouraged to create a hand-crafted Christmas Ornament (can't be bought - gotta be made) and we play Dirty Santa with them. We had 15 participating last year. Some of the creations have been incredible (my brother made an fantasitc 'Elvis' out of clay last year!)... . Also, while I buy my kids Christmas presents, it's the Hand-drawn Personalized-for-them Christmas Cards (and Birthdays too) I make for them each year they most look forward to!

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