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Every now and then we run across an article that we think our readers would appreciate reading. With the holiday season upon us and the fact that almost everyone is trying to stretch those shopping and holiday spending dollars more than ever, we wanted to pass on an article that has some useful ideas that we all can make use of. We want to thank Crunchy Crafts for permission to reprint this article.
Frugal Christmas Ideas
Check our their blog Get A Little Chrunchy
Cutting down on holiday spending does not mean you have to cut down on the fun. You can plan an affordable holiday and keep it fun with these tips.
1-First you must create a budget. Figure out how much you can afford, go through your checkbook, look at the bills due around and after Christmas, and consider any December birthdays (we have 3). Now that you know how much you can afford you need to figure out how its going to be spent (presents, decorations,food, etc.)
2-Make a list. If you make a gift list you can save a bundle. Your wont have any last minuet scurrying and you wont waste time when you shop. You can make a spending limit for each person if you wish and dont stray from the list (unless you have to).
3-Handmade for the holidays can save you a bundle as well. It can also make gift giving more meaningful and but tons more fun.
4-Start early, this is a hard one but the earlier you start the better. You will have more time to find the really deals and you will feel less pressure.
5- Don't shop for yourself. Seeing those deals can get you excited about something you may have had your eye on. However it will hurt you more in the long run.
6- Save on cards. If you must send Christmas cards (and I must) you can be smarter about it. You can make your own and add special touches, turn last years cards into post cards, send e-cards, or buy your cards a year ahead when they are on clearance.
7- Don't buy gift wrap. This is a big one for me because I hate gift wrap. I dont like the idea that you wrap a present in paper rip it off and throw it out. Think of all the work that went into that paper and the years and years it took for that tree to grow. Instead you can use newspaper, paper bags, your child's artwork, Thrift stores many times have a ton of wall paper sift through it and find some you like and use that.
8- Make your decorations. The Internet is a wonderful source of ideas. Just do a search and you will be surprised by what you find.
9-Christmas Music. Everyone has their favorite Christmas songs. Instead of buying a bunch of Cd's burn them (legally of course) and enjoy only your faves.
10- Limit the lights. Don't keep your Christmas tree and decoration lights on all day and night. Limit the time they are on to a few hours at most. This will save you on your electricity bill and the environment will love you for it too. Also LED lights are a wonderful way to save some money as are fiber optic lights both last a while and fiber optic usually only have 1 bulb. When you do have your Christmas tree lights on turn off the rest of the lights. You will have plenty of light and it will look even better.
I hope these tips help you have an affordable and wonderful holiday season. And please remember whatever you wrap with make it recyclable and recycled it.
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