Friday, October 15, 2010

Christmas Gift Giving - How to avoid going crazy and broke this year..

Christmas is only 72 days away. Yep. Seventy-Two.

Have you bought any gifts yet?

If you have, do you remember where you have put them? Or is there a chance you will find them buried in the back of the cupboard next Easter and wonder who you even bought them for?

This is one of the reasons I love my Christmas Planner - It has a page for Gift Closet Inventory. At a glance I know what I already have and who it's for, which will save me time, stress and money as I know I won't be double buying.

So let's talk budget. I'm on a smaller one this year for a couple of reasons:

  • We have less money coming in while I am on maternity leave

  • We have more family members and friends to buy for as we are all in baby making mode!

    I wouldn't want it any other way - For me, Christmas is more about spending time and creating happy memories with loved ones than about presents. But I love giving gifts, and I still want to hand out some pretty packages over Christmas this year.

    So how will I cope financially and still make sure no-one misses out?

    Here's my plan:

  • Write out my gift list early - who am I giving to this year? Jot down the $ amount I would like to spend, and any gift ideas I have for each person.

  • Ask each person on my list if they would still like to swap presents this year. After all, maybe they're on a smaller budget too. If I ask early enough (i.e. before December), it's not an awkward conversation - it's giving my loved ones a say in how Christmas will be this year, rather than leaving them wondering whether we are exchanging gifts and possibly causing them last minute shopping stress.

  • Go through my Gift Inventory and assign any presents I already have.

  • Make a copy of my gift list and put it in my handbag - this way, when I am out and about running errands, I can look at my list and pick up one or two at a time when I see them at a good price.

  • Shop online whenever I can to save battling the Christmas Shopping Queues

  • Cross each person off my list as I buy for them - because I just love the feeling of accomplishment it gives me ;)

  • Label gifts as I put them in my gift cupboard so I remember who they're for in the coming months

  • Look at other ways to give rather than buying: Christmas cooking or craft, or using talents I have in everyday life - facials / pamper treatments etc (trust me, it's not a cheesy gift if you actually follow through with giving the treatment, and really focus on making them feel good).

    So that's my budget-conscious-but-still-in-the-spirit-of-giving Christmas Plan for this year.

    How do you organise your gift giving?

    xo Marissa.

    P.S If the picture above is yours and you would like me to remove it, please let me know :)


    1. Wonderful ideas! I'm hoping to make a lot of my gifts this year, just depends on how much time I have!



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