|Taylor in the Snow|
We love each other, our kids, family, and friends and want to bless them. And naturally want to give them gifts but we just need to be smart about how we do it. Christmas is the time of year where our savings often gets depleted and we end up sneaking into consumer debt but I am determined to stop that cycle.
DISCLAIMER: Everyone's budget and priorities are different. Some people will think our budget is a lot especially considering we are going to Disneyland and some people might think our budget is stingy. I read on Dave Ramsey's website that a family should spend around 1-2% of their annual take-home income on Christmas. But I imagine most families spend much more than that.
|Our litte Angel|
|Christmas at My parents 2012, we spent the night and Santa came to their house. So Fun, too bad Brian was sick.|
Number #2 - A Change Jar - Anytime I have extra charge, I now have a jar to put it in. I also decided that if I have any fives left after my weekly shopping trips that they will go in the jar as well. I might have this be part of the budget if money is tight one of these months or use it as fun money during Christmas break. We will see.
Number #3 - Find FREE money - They say nothing in life is free and that is mostly true. However, you can cash in Credit Card Rewards for gift cards to Amazon or Texas Roadhouse. Earn gift cards on swagbucks, use money earned from rebate apps like Ibotta, Shopmium, and Checkout 51. Get Movie codes for buying participating products. Earn money doing surveys, etc.
Number #4 - Focus on the TRUE meaning of Christmas and all of the fun, cheap, and free activities. Driving around to see Christmas lights, building a snowman, going sledding, singing Christmas songs, drinking hot chocolate or wassail, Christmas parties, dressing up and reenacting the Nativity story. And finding small and meaningful ways to give by letting the kids be Heavenly Father's (Santa's) helpers during the next few months (and all year long).