Oh my, the holidays are fast approaching. I can hear my wallet crying out my name… “open me, spend money, do it! do it! do it!.
Fortunately I have a roll of duct tape in my car, so I slap a piece on and quiet it down. Duct tape is code for a ‘Financial Management Tool Box” (although I do really have duct tape in my trunk, covered a hole in my tire once and drove home, but that’s a story for another day) 🙂
In my financial management tool box I have a budget and a Christmas shopping list. And a dash of ingenuity. Christmas is about family and friends and lasting moments. I do my best to remind myself of that to avoid the temptation to spend, spend, spend and get just “one more gift”.
Recently I was asked for my three top tips for Holiday Shopping. I thought long and hard about the three steadfast rules I have incorporated over the years (mostly because I was financially-challenged for many years and had stockings to fill) and this is what I came up with:
Gifts from the heart are WAY more valuable than gifts from the wallet.
I make most of my gifts. Friends look forward to my annual Christmas ornament and preserves.
(Well, at least they don’t tell me any different) *grin*
Planning is of utmost important to avoid last minute spending.
I have a gift-truck and I start buying as soon as Christmas is over. Most people don’t buy seasonal decorations for themselves, so I buy Santas, Snowmen and the like when they are 75% off and tuck them away. This saves me oodles.
(Oh dear, now my friends will know what they are getting and how little I paid…oops!)
Let’s face it, people expect wine at the holidays. But why break your budget. I put a batch of wine on mid-year, bottle it, put some nice labels on it and viola! Red and White for me and my guests. Also great as a hostess gift or last-minute gift idea.
(Just need to figure out how to keep hubby out of the stash. OK, any maybe myself on ‘occasion’.)
So there you have it, three tips. Might be a tad late for this year but you can start the year off right next year.
Happy ‘Frugal’ Holidays! From the heart!