whip it up in the kitchen
Once for a birthday party, I brought some special dog cupcakes to my Yorkie-loving friend. They were extremely time expensive, but were a big hit at her party. She even froze one so that she could keep it and show it to people later.
Weddings can get really expensive for the guests and their wedding party members! For a wedding I went to a few months ago, one bridesmaid really outdid herself with a time-expensive gift. She organized all of the bride's close friends in making a scrapbook. She gave us all paper on which we added pictures and stories about our memories with the bride then drove all over town collecting the pages. The bride really appreciated the book and honestly, when was the last time you saw a set of dishes or a toaster make someone cry?
Gifter beware... handmade gifts can easily turn into tacky "I can't even return this and I have to find some place to use it" gifts. Before giving a homemade craft, do the Etsy test: would you buy it if you saw it online? This doesn't mean that a crafty person can't give a crafty gift- just find an online tutorial with easy to follow steps.
the dogs came along too!
There are countless free and fun things that you could incorporate into a day of fun. Just make sure that you're the one taking care of all the details!
go the distance
My youngest cousin recently graduated from college and I really wanted to show him my support for such a great accomplishment. Unlike many other family members, I didn't have the funds to just write out a large check so that he could go buy furniture and other things he needed for his first apartment alone. I quickly realized that it was a perfect situation for me to give him a great time-expensive gift. While everyone else in the family was able to contribute monetarily, I was able to give him a great start by taking time off of work so that I could drive with him to his new home a few hours away and help moving become a much smoother transition.
This type of gift can range from driving across the state to help a friend celebrate a bachelorette party to driving across town to pick up your husband's favorite sandwich. They won't believe that you would go so far just to show that you care.
Do you have any time-expensive gifts that you like to give?