Here’s a really great homemade gift idea for the kids on your list – couple it with a coloring book and everyone will call you Martha. My daughter calls this “fixing my broken crayons.”
These are very easy to make. Take your broken or unwanted crayons and remove the paper label. Soaking them for a few minutes in warm soapy water will make that easier. For the really tough labels, I used a paring knife and just peeled it off – I think that was easier than soaking them.
As for melting the crayons, there are several methods – and each will give you a slightly different result. For these, I melted the crayons in a small loaf pan set in a larger pan of water on the stovetop. When they were melted, I poured the wax into a Christmas tree ice cube tray that I picked up at the thrift store for 50 cents. Let them cool on the counter until they are hard and then put into the freezer so they will release from the mold more easily. But don’t cool them in the freezer, they crack.
I put them in a cellophane bag and made a little topper with scrap paper and a Sharpie. Ta-da!
Helpful hints about color: I used various shades of red, pink, blue, and purple for the purple crayons. I also added white to soften the color a bit. Same with the green (except I used blues, yellows, and greens obviously). By the time I got to the red ones, I was out of red crayons. But various shades of pink, orange, and a touch of brown combine nicely to make red.