Ways to Save Money this Holiday Season
One of the hardest things for anyone to do is deny their family anything they want especially around the holidays. Children are supposed to make lists for Santa and he is supposed to check them twice. But what do you do when Santa doesn’t have any money? As a Waco bankruptcy attorney, I see people every year with money problems. So many people feel like failures this time of year due to money problems and it doesn’t appear that it is getting any better. So, what can you do? Here are a few ideas.
1) Make Time for Each Other. When I look back on my childhood, I don’t remember the toys. I remember the things my family did together as a family. One of my most cherished memories involves my church. Like most churches, my childhood church donated toys and food to needy families. One night in December, we would go to the church and all the donated items would be spread out of large tables. Everyone would grab a shopping chart and a list of details about a needy family and you would fill up your shopping chart with items for that family’s holiday. I loved spending the evening with my family helping another and it didn’t cost my parents a dime. Yet I remember that time more than what toys were under the tree. My husband and paralegal, Stephen Kehl, remembers looking at Christmas lights with his brother and parents. The bottom line, it doesn’t matter what you do, just do it together.
2) Bake your presents. I can’t cook. But every year, my best friend and her daughter make homemade chocolates in baskets for Christmas presents for everyone on her list. She gets to spend time with her daughter bonding and makes a delicious treat for everyone as well. Why not make it a baking party with friends and family? Get together, bake up a storm, and share the fruits of your labor and the memories.
3) Plan an activity rather than exchange presents. Have a family paintball competition or dinner rather than exchanging presents. You can have fun and not worry about when you need to wear the new sweater Aunt Carol knitted for you this year.
4) Gift exchange. Have the extended family do a gift exchange this year to help. They can be serious presents or not so serious. Every year during my family’s gift exchange, everyone fights over a painting of our family tree which is a tree covered in acorns that says “Our Nutty Family”. Everyone laughs so hard when it comes out.
5) Buy Gift Cards. If you don’t know what to get someone, why not give a gift card and let them buy what they want. My mother-in-law is saving for something special and collecting gift cards as presents until she has enough to go buy her something special she wants.
The bottom line is have fun and remember what is really important this holiday season, family and friends. And money can’t buy them.
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