Don’t you blame the messenger for this one! Christmas is about two months away and closing fast. I see you rolling your eyes like a teenager that was asked to put her phone down for like five minutes! Anyway, that isn’t going to change the calendar. So, instead of holding your breath in a silent scream, lets have a Merry Frugal Christmas without a trip to the land of misfit and broken finances. Remember to have fun!
1. Start Early
Maybe this piece of advice is offered a bit late for this year but as the professional athletes say, it is what it is. Two months will fly by, but it is still plenty of time to prepare for Christmas. Just start now. You may have 4 pays or 8 pays before Christmas. Figure out how much of each pay you can dedicate toward Christmas gifts or decorations or all the holiday accoutrements. Maybe you are like me and you don’t have enough to purchase a lump of coal that each of your family members richly deserves. (Sarcasm.) Well, time will help you find other ways to please those ingrates (sarcasm) with gifts that don’t require a big purchase.
2. Let It Be Known
For those of us with children, have them make up a wish list as early as possible. For aunts and uncles and grandparents and anyone intending to purchase Christmas gifts, they want answers! Make it easy on them! Don’t let them wander lost up and down the aisles of some store or endlessly scroll items online wondering, without a clue what to get for your kids. They are begging for answers so go ahead and give it to them. Send out a family email with a list of potential gifts for your kids. No obligations of course but most of us appreciate having a clue to make our shopping easier. Everyone wins.
3. Make It Pretty, Not Expensive
Even if you don’t consider yourself a “crafty” person, you can find lots of easy inexpensive projects online. Recruit the family to help you assemble the gifts. Ribbons and bows are inexpensive. Your can decorate jars filled with homemade cookies and your neighbors will be thrilled. You don’t need a whole party plate filled with treats. Pretty containers of 3 to 6 cookies or other treats will thrill your friends and family alike. Seriously, keep your piles of sugary sweats away from me! No one needs that temptation sitting around the house for too long.
4. Have a Budget
Sure, it goes right along with planning. Okay, you caught me! I am repeating myself, but it is important. You must to know how much you can spend before you spend it. Once you have your number in mind, stick to it. Remember to keep it about the gift giving rather than gift shopping and buying. Your friends and family are your friends and family for a reason and I’m guessing it isn’t for the Gucci!
5. Host a Potluck Party
It’s fun to have dinner parties for Christmas but that can be a budget buster. Invite friends over and let everyone help. Potluck dinners are the best because you usually get to sample the best dishes or sides that your friends and family have to offer. That makes for a delicious meal plus, it’s just more fun. We love going to our friends and bringing a side or even a choice cut of meat to contribute to the meal. Nothing is better than gathering with friends around the dinner table and sharing jokes and stories and food!
Christmas isn’t a competition and it isn’t about status. Focus on your friends and family and fun and your bank account will stay high while your stress levels stay low!
Finally, since you likely will be celebrating Christmas again next year, don’t forget to check out the discounted Christmas everything on December 26th! Remember planning ahead is the surefire way to keep expenses in check. Happy frugal Christmas!
Have a frugal Christmas by creating a holiday spending budget. Click below for the tips: