My workplace has been sold to another party and all my long service leave and holiday leave will be paid out to me. I will make sure that I put some away in the Christmas account. Very steadily building up.
What do you plan to do in the month of August to help reduce the financial burden at Christmas?
I have thought about buying extra shampoo, deodorant, washing powder, toothpaste, dishwashing liquid, light bulbs, fabric softener, soap, and dishwasher tablets so I won't have those expenses in December, and possibly even January. Don't forget paper towels, toilet tissue, and cleaning supplies.
Inventory Christmas supplies now. If you aren't using HobLob and Michael's coupons on other things, buy wrapping supplies or stocking stuffers.
Remember to check the linen and small appliance sales going on now for kids going off to college...do you have someone on your list who can use those types of things? Buy them now for Christmas. Or school supply type things. For most kids, Christmas is almost mid year and supplies are used up or worn out. Some of them might appreciate new notebooks, pen, or pencils around Christmas.
Good idea missjane! I've done this in the past and it really makes a difference. I spend less this time of year in the supermarket and stores so I have a separate list with these items that I keep in my purse. I wait until they are on sale. I make sure I keep the toiletries in a shopping bag stored away so no one uses them ahead of time. Around Thanksgiving I restock the bathrooms with these items then store what isn't needed in the bathroom cabinets. I also found it relieves a lot of stress especially during those years when I have a house full of guests!
I pulled a big chunk out of the July paychecks (a painful amount) and tucked it into the separate Credit Union account I have set aside for Christmas. This account is not linked to any of our other accounts and therefore cannot be raided. Hurts now but we'll be thankful to be re-depositing that money into our account in December.
Also big change this year in Back to School strategy:
I'm buying 2 sizes in Jeans and maybe shoes - a size for now and the next size up. Last couple years I got hit needing to buy new jeans, shoes and socks right BEFORE the holidays - cuz the darn kids keep growing! This time I'm going to hit those mid-Sept sales and clean up.
As we head toward the end of August, it is getting closer to time that we can start baking ahead. Think about focusing on non-perishable staple groceries or things that will store nicely in the fridge/freezer.
I noticed last weekend at WM that the price of cream cheese and butter has escalated (not a big surprise because so has the price of everything), but start thinking about what you need for baking and look for sales in the coming weeks. Buy ahead now so you are not buying everything all in one month.
Some things I am going to buy are:
onions (chop and freeze)
bellpepper (chop and freeze)
sweetened condensed milk
Deidra, you are right. I will be putting some in today and again on Oct. 25th. After that, the bank will be issuing my Christmas Club around the middle of November. That's when the real shopping will begin!
I have noticed many coupons for batteries lately. Start checking any presents that require batteries and pick them up as you shop so that expense does not hit all at once.
Some areas also have to think about preparing for winter storms. Check your car safety travel kits. Do they need to be replenished? Do you need water, candles, batteries for flashlights for your home? If you have a generator, check it to see if it's working properly. Doing this now will keep you from having that expense near the holidays.
Also, menus need to be finalized since sales on grocery items will begin as we get nearer to Thanksgiving (for us Americans...dear Canadian friends get to celebrate first!)
What a difference a year makes! I have always had a Christmas Club, or tucked money away myself. I also always started putting money away around August for baking supplies and stocking stuffers. Well, this year we have both been out of work and I have no money set aside for Christmas. But this year obviously will be leaner than past years, and starting next week, money will start coming in again so my budget is all set. And once this season is over I will continue to stash money in my envelopes as I did in the past. It feels very strange to not be where I feel I should be with Christmas preparation...
I just re-read this whole thread. Now I'm wondering did you plan and/or saving ideas work for you? Will you use them again or do you have other ideas to sharing? Reminder to self go look for a 2012 savings thread lol
Anyway my plan was working & right on track UNTIL Oct 8th when our house went up in flames. My little Christmas storage containers along with the cash I had in them made it through the fire. However, we had to use the cash for more immediate things.
As I read this thread again Diedra kept urgeing us to tuck a little away on Rudy. My DH gets paid 2 times a month occassionally there is an extra check, he works for the city so pay isn't excessive lol. I think I'll plan a Rudy day tuck away" in like a small bill I need to pay. But I'm going to muliple that times 3(Rudy Day, possible emergency or maintance, & whatever) then divide by 2. And take the amount out each paycheck.
Plus as someone(sorry don't remember who) suggested I think I will put some of my own up out of taxes. I have already told DH(in front of witness because he doesn't hear or forgets what I say)we'll be putting some of our taxes up for AC's this spring.
Yea, my plan worked very well. I actually run out of time before money this year. Everyone was happy with what they received (except maybe the people who's projects are still under my craft table unfinished, lol).
I plan on doing the Christmas in July gifts for some people again this year. This is great for kids who receive so many gifts at Christmas they are overwhelmed. Getting an early gift seems more exciting somehow.