Holiday and Christmas time is an expensive time for most families. From buying gifts, stocking stuffers, decorations, and food most families budgets are stretched very tight during the holidays. How do you ensure that your family has a holiday and Christmas that they will remember without you paying for it for the entire next year?
The first thing that you need to do is to make a budget. Make a list of everyone that you need gifts for and then put a budgeted amount that you would like to spend by each name. This will give you an idea of how much that you need to save or come up with to buy all of the gifts that you need for Christmas. If this amount is more than you can afford, then you may want to consider reevaluating your budgeted amounts for each person or consider giving them something that you make yourself or something that you do for them.
Keep in mind when buying your children’s gifts that they do not need everything on their list. Buy the important things and then have them save for some of the others. This will make them appreciate their toys much more.
Giving gifts that come from you, whether a handmade craft or a service, is a great way to save money on Christmas gifts. If you are crafty, you can find any number of crafts that will thrill the person that you gift it to. Crafts mean a lot to others as they are handmade and come from your efforts, rather than your purse.
Services are another great gift idea. If your sister has kids and needs a babysitter, why not give her a coupon for a night of babysitting? Other service ideas are lawn mowing, fixing dinner, cleaning their house, washing their car, or anything else that you can think of. This idea can mean a lot to an older person who is not as able to do things for themselves and would be greatly appreciated. Plus, they will get to spend time with you, which is what they want the most!
Decorations can be easily made from pinecones, twigs, and other natural materials. Use what you have around the house already and update it to give it a new look and feel for this Christmas season! Kids love to make ornaments and they will make your Christmas tree look homey and comfortable! Decorations need not be expensive. What do you think the pioneers used to decorate? Take some ideas from them to make your home look beautiful this Christmas season.
Christmas spending does not have to cause you to completely empty your wallet. If you go closely by your budget, leave the credit cards at home, and use your creativity and imagination, you are sure to have a holiday and Christmas that everyone will love and remember.