I am always looking for ways to cut costs during this time of year. The ugly truth is there are many years that we spent way more than we should have (or could afford) on gifts for our kids, family members and friends.
You see the problem with having a giving heart is that you want to give to everybody, despite what your bank account says. Which results in loads of stress. After the season is over, I talk to so many people who are stressed out because, they racked up incredible debt or are broke.
There are many ways you can still give to those you love without breaking the bank. Here is a list of 10 ways that I save BIG at Christmas time:
- I buy gifts at Ollie’s, Big Lots or other discount stores. These stores have such great discounts and are usually the overstock of what is in other stores.
- I stalk Target’s Cartwheel app. Every day they post a deal that is 50% off for a different toy, apparel, etc. It only lasts 24 hours so hurry in!
- I bake something yummy. In the past I have made cookies and fudge for my family and friends to give away. This takes more time than money.
- I make mason jar gifts. These are my favorite! You layer your ingredients for hot chocolate (cocoa mix, marshmallows, Christmas colored candies) or a cookie mix ( flour, brown sugar, raisins, oatmeal candies). They look beautiful and people love them.
- Yes, I do black Friday. I am one of the crazies…but I only go out for a few hours with my sister to catch the deals that we have already highlighted as insane savings. These are usually the door busters. Some deals are worth it and some are not so be careful and compare your prices!
- Pick names with family or friends. If buying for all your relatives or friends has you overwhelmed: pick names so that everyone has only one person to buy for. This will save you tons and people like the idea of getting a new person every year.
- Stock up throughout the year. Waiting until the last minute, can cost you. If you are focusing on saving all year around, you can pick up great deals on clearance through the year and stock them for the season.
- Buy children’s gifts at the thrift store. So many of our local thrift stores have amazing, newer toys for ridiculously low prices. From clothes, to books and toys you can find anything you would need.
- Think outside the box. Getting your husband, parent or child a year subscription to their favorite magazine is fairly inexpensive and is the gift that keeps on giving all year long. This time of year there are so many deals for getting these for dirt cheap.
- Yes, I said it.. Re-gift. Now don’t get tacky with this concept (LOL). There are some items that were given to me or that I have bought in the past that I haven’t used and are beautiful gifts that I truly think someone else would enjoy. These are the type of things that I re-gift to someone else.
I love this season more than anything! We teach our children that this season is not about what you can get, but what you can give. This is the time of year that we celebrate God giving us His only son, Jesus Christ and we really want to focus on the ultimate gift of salvation not all the stuff.
The worldly way of viewing this season creates stress about money and how much we spend on each person, including our kids. However, we have chosen to not be in that kind of bondage any longer but to give within our means. God knows our hearts, and it’s not to impress everyone around us but to glorify Him by still being good stewards of our money while remembering He is the reason for the season!!
What ways do you save during this season?? (Comment below)
**For more tips on saving money check out “10 ways to save money on your household expenses.”