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Budget & Bargains Here's a spot to discuss budgeting for holidays and also bargains you may discover and wish to share with other members.

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  #21  
Old 11-19-2010
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Well, I keep stretching the ole dollar .... actually, I went to the Dollar Tree and found some great items for the stocking, sugar free hard candies for the grandparents, horse wall calendar for DD, CARS items for DS, car/tools thingies for my dad, lotions and bath gels, socks for DH ... etc. Lots! Even Christmas card packs for 2011!

Otherwise, we have a Christmas Wish List with our homeschool families. Families post what they "wish" for, and other families who want to pass down items to others may do so! I just post this in our newsletter every so many days. It is wonderful how needs are being met. Amen. It was an idea of a mom last year. So, this is our 2nd year of doing it.

We also, last year, took over a room in a nearby church and everyone brought their unwanted items. Then it was like a FREE garage sale. Everyone could come take home other "treasures" for Christmas. We asked that items be "gently used".

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  #22  
Old 11-19-2010
dreamto dreamto is offline
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We, too, are scaling things down this year because of necessity.

All our kiddos are grown with familes of their own. We have 10 grandchildren and 1 gr-grandson. So THEY are the ones I mainly am going to concentrate on. I plan to buy them one outfit (2 if I can afford it) and a decent toy (abt 30-40 dollars) I have been watching the sales and only buying if it has a really good price. So far I have maybe 25% of my gifts purchased.

My kids understand things are tight and so don't expect anything this year. Dh and I wont exchange gifts this year either.

I am still doing stockings for all but they will only contain cheap stuff.

It takes some thinking and watching but I am pretty happy with my purchases (and prices) so far. We usually spend around $2500. This year will be under $800.
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  #23  
Old 03-20-2012
SparkleNana SparkleNana is offline
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I found this thread... and it has wonderful thoughts and ideas! This weekend is our March Rudy Day Weekend! So..... "Christmassy thoughts have been creeping into my mind......"

AND... as I have posted on other threads.... dh and I are "revamping" our finances.... and thus.... also "revamping" our life style. I was doing some.... major "financial inventory" work.... and the rising cost of living... is pretty staggering!

Preparing for Christmas 2012.... is going to involve.... LOTS of thoughtful "financial work". NOT to cover actual "Christmas expenses". But to cover all the other (escalating) costs of "winter life". So that... Christmas.... can be... financially peaceful!

What do you think?
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  #24  
Old 03-21-2012
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I, too, have already started thinking about what we will do for Christmas this year. Last year, I did one really major gift for each child (including grown DS and DDIL). I want to scale back from what we did last year.

I've thought maybe 2 small gifts and then give cash in the stockings. My kids are so last minute with deciding what major gift they want. If they get cash, they can buy what they want, but it seems so impersonal to me. I really like the "hunt" on Black Friday and for the perfect gift....I know, I'm a gluton for punishment like that! But for me it's the kick-off to the Christmas season in earnest.

That being said, we have a Christmas Club account started and are saving our change. Plus, I am putting small amounts on a Wal-Mart gift card to use to buy baking things and all those other last minute pick-ups at Christmas. It already has almost $60 on it.
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  #25  
Old 03-22-2012
Minta Minta is offline
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Great job with the savings so far missjane.
I have been finding alot of great clearance deals .. had to pass on some because I did not want to buy the stuff with knowing who it going to. I didnt pass on all though.. did score alot of small items for stocking stuffers or items that can be paired together and a couple of gifts. Eveything was at least 75% OFF or greater so saved alot of $$ there so far.

We didnt open a Christmas club this year but I do have some money put aside. Maybe I will take that to the bank and open a christmas club this weekend. Better late then never.

I am another one who is a big shopper on Black Friday! Kids are getting older and my duaghter is phazing out of the toys stage and more into the expensive electronics stuff.

One thing I decided to do last minute last Christmas that I will be doing again this year is cutting back on my baking and the goodies that we pass out for Christmas. My dad and his wife will still get their basket of baked goodies but everyone else will either have to enjoy the goodies while visiting our home at Christmas or they will go with out. It was more enjoyable plus it was cheaper on the wallet.

Last edited by Minta; 03-22-2012 at 07:53 AM.
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  #26  
Old 03-22-2012
SparkleNana SparkleNana is offline
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What a good reminder, missjane!!! I have completely forgotten about putting money on a Wal-Mart gift card... for Christmas 2012! I must do that! AND... I had a $350 check... that I was going to use to open our Christmas 2012 savings account! Some "emergencies" came up..... and I made dh PROMISE.... that we WOULD "repay that money".... and open the Christmas savings account! And... we didn't do it!!!! So.... TWO GOALS.

This thread can help me remember those two goals. And keep things "on track" for Christmas 2012!!!!

Missjane.... kids "needs" and "wants" really do change... from year to year! One gift that my dh really enjoys.... is a gift card from Amazon.... from our oldest son! It is convenient for ordering books and things.

Minta... I think that cutting down on the baking is a good idea. EVERYONE loves baked goods! But.... everyone is also watching their weight!!! They can enjoy your baking when they visit your house... during Christmas 2012!

Missjane.... I think that you can still enjoy Black Friday.... even if you don't buy A LOT of items on that day. Black Friday IS the "kickoff" to the rest-of-the-world's-Christmas-season.... and we should absolutely enjoy any part of Christmas.... that is fun for US! After all.... we do "bring the magic" to a lot of peoples' Christmases!
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  #27  
Old 03-23-2012
Winged One Winged One is offline
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I have started my crafting (slowly). I am planning on making presents for more people this year than last, and as my siblings, and my Dad's siblings have now adopted KK approaches (us "kids" have sorta shamed the "grown ups" into it - the kids range 27-37, and grownups from 48-63!!), that does make it easier.

SIL will need house stuff this year. BIL will be getting a foodie hamper. I have books for his kids already (bought last month in 70% off section), and I am knitting a hat for 1, will work on something handmade for the other 2 as well.

I got books for my other DNiece and DNephew in that sell off too. I'll probably make something to go with that as well.

Then that just leaves DD, DH and both of our sets of parents. And possibly my 2 granmothers. I won't be going overboard on any of them - parents may both get foodie hampers or handmade items. I know my mum loved the "winter car emergency kit" that I put together for her last winter (bad weather items, general car emergency stuff, and things like socks and choc bars too as she's diabetic).

Oh, and I started making my cards last week, so that I won't have to buy any this year.

But this year, far more so than other years, I am noticing how my paycheck does NOT stretch like it used to and my savings are not building up at all again. So this thread is a VERY timely reminder!
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  #28  
Old 03-23-2012
Christmas Girl Christmas Girl is offline
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I'm on maternity leave this year so my salary has reduced to more than half of what is was. We wil really need to cut back but it will be worth it to be able to be at home with DS until he is one year old.

I've joined a Christmas savings club with my sister as we do joint gift for our parents and grand parents and have started putting money on a card for our local grocery store. We have 12 people for Christmas dinner so this should help cover most of the costs.

Just keeping looking for any special offers throughout the year to help spread the costs
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  #29  
Old 03-23-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minta View Post
One thing I decided to do last minute last Christmas that I will be doing again this year is cutting back on my baking and the goodies that we pass out for Christmas. My dad and his wife will still get their basket of baked goodies but everyone else will either have to enjoy the goodies while visiting our home at Christmas or they will go with out. It was more enjoyable plus it was cheaper on the wallet.
I love this idea Minta of sharing the goodies at your home.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SparkleNana View Post
What a good reminder, missjane!!! I have completely forgotten about putting money on a Wal-Mart gift card... for Christmas 2012! I must do that! AND... I had a $350 check... that I was going to use to open our Christmas 2012 savings account! Some "emergencies" came up..... and I made dh PROMISE.... that we WOULD "repay that money".... and open the Christmas savings account! And... we didn't do it!!!! So.... TWO GOALS.
I keep forgetting the WalMart card too. And I live within sight of Walmart. Paying back a savings withdrawal is so very hard but doable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Winged One View Post
Then that just leaves DD, DH and both of our sets of parents. And possibly my 2 granmothers. I won't be going overboard on any of them
I think the key word Wings is "overboard". I tend to do this and I need to stop. tfs
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  #30  
Old 03-23-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Christmas Girl View Post
I'm on maternity leave this year so my salary has reduced to more than half of what is was. We wil really need to cut back but it will be worth it to be able to be at home with DS until he is one year old.
Isn't it amazing how a cut in salary can show you how to be fugual? You are doing so well with this.
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