3 Great Gifts That Don’t Cost a Thing

Money-saving, heart-warming ideas from Wake Up Yoga's Corina Benner

A gift from the heart could end up being the best package under the tree.

Some of the most treasured items I’ve ever received weren’t found in a store, and they cost the giver not much more than some time and thought. This season, take a moment to create a gift that truly shows the recipient how much they mean to you. Not only will you save yourself the stress of paying off credit card bills in January, but the heart-warming, soul-satisfying return you’ll get both from making it—taking the time to do something meaningful requires you to slow down and really think about the people you love, which is good for your body on so many levels—and the look on your loved one’s face when they open it will make it feel like Christmas so much more than any gift from the mall ever could.

Here, four fun ideas (three are free and one costs less than $10!) from a person who truly understands what it means to be mindful: Wake Up Yoga’s Corina Benner.

1. “Rather than buying a token gift for the people on your list, write each one a heartfelt card. Detail the things you love about them, write out your favorite memory of them, include a poem or the lyrics to a song that reminds you of them, or tell them the way in which you are inspired by who they are or what they do in the world. If you have artistic talent, create the card yourself.”

2. “You can also plant a tree as a gift that will grow and enrich the planet. I’ve used this organization in the past: treegreetings.com. You choose the kind of tree you want, they send an animated email card that you choose, and trees start as low as $8.95.”

3. “If you enjoy cooking, you can put together a list of your favorite recipes to share with family and friends.”

4. “You can give the gift of inspiration by gathering quotes and poems that speak to your heart, printing them out together and offering that as a present.” — Reporting by Grace Dickinson

What was the best homemade gift you ever received, Philly? Are you making any this year? Tell us in the comments below!