12 Days of Christmas Blog Challenge: Day 4

Friday, November 26, 2010
I think one of the biggest changes we've made lately to help the budget side of the holidays is that we've just had to make the decision NOT to buy for every single person we know or are related to...after all it isn't about the presents, right! Some families draw names, others just play the game (we do that as I've mentioned in another day on the challenge), some families have other traditions related to gift giving. We have drawn names before, but as our family has grown it's pretty much been decided that other than playing the game, the gifts will just be for the kiddies and the adults really don't need anything else. That may sound sad, but actually it's made it better b/c in my opinion we concentrate on the real meaning of the holidays and not the material & commercial side of it...now, don't get me wrong. We still buy a few presents, but our lists have just really been culled down to be more reasonable. Now the holidays are more about the fellowship and the together time with family & friends that makes the holidays so special.

Another thing I have to say I do now is shop online - I know that isn't anything new to anyone, but I bet at least 75% of my shopping these days are done online. It saves so much - time, money, sanity!!! The problem it creates is that if I buy something too early, I have a hard time hanging on to it until Christmas!! LOL! I love to order things online b/c when it shows up on the doorstep a week or two later it's almost like I'm getting a gift - even if it isn't something for me personally!!!

I love shopping on Amazon.com - it's my go to place for all my shopping. Anytime there is something I want to buy Amazon is the first place I go to compare prices. And usually shipping is free if you spend $25, which isn't hard to do at all...and if I don't have $25 worth of merchandise I usually just keep things in my shopping cart until they add up to $25.

One last thing I try to do to help the November/December spending is that throughout the year when I buy a birthday present for someone, if that is a person that I usually buy a Christmas present for I try to pick out two things for them...then I just put one away in the closet so it's there ready for me to wrap up for Christmas. I can't wrap it early, though b/c chances are I'll forget what it is!! Ha ha!! But spreading out the spending really helps a lot! And if I run upon a good sale going on earlier in the year that's great Christmas shopping!! 


Day 1: Christmas/Holiday traditions
Day 2: Black Friday/General Shopping Tips & Tricks
Day 3: Most meaningful gift/best gift you've received
Day 4: Tips/Tricks to a Budget Friendly holiday season
Day 5: Favorite Holiday Movie/TV Show Special
Day 6: Gift ideas (what do YOU want? We all have family/friends reading our blogs...so let them know!)
Day 7: Holiday Craft/DIY  (If you don't make anything, what do you WISH you could make?)
Day 8: Least favorite thing about the Holidays
Day 9: Favorite Holiday recipe
Day 10: Favorite Christmas Songs/Caroles
Day 11: New Year Resolutions
Day 12: Show us your decorations (indoor/outdoor)
Day 13: Favorite Cookie Recipe
Day 14: Oprah's Favorite Things: What item(s) would you want if you were in the audience?