My Precious Pennies

I will be AWAY until late February as we do this moving thing...again.

Ginger from Attention Target Shoppers & Tricia from 1stopmom
will be holding down the fort in the meantime - thank you so much, ladies!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Tipster Tuesday: Countdown to Christmas!


I'm not a Christmas nut...far from it. The only reason that I have a running countdown on my computer and on my phone is because Christmas might as well be D-Day to me. I'm not Ebenezer Scrooge, but Christmas is a lot of work and stress. I've already started panicking about the whole Christmas thing. But it's good to panic early, especially when you've got a big family.

My husband's family is gigantically enormous, mainly due to the fact that his parents divorced and remarried. We're not planning to be close to any of our family this Christmas, so just the postage alone is enough to break the piggy bank. Here is the plan that I've devised so far to deal with Christmas madness:
  • Spend good money on pictures. No one gets to see us much, and besides...who could resist a picture of the adorable baby? Last year we spent $100 on a photography session. She wasn't a professional, but you really couldn't tell from the pictures. I got all 250 images with full rights, so I used some free print credits for a bunch of pictures. I made my own personalized cards with them and included some extra pictures in each envelope. Everyone loved them and it saved me the hassle of having to shop for and send odd-shaped packages. And I didn't have to guess what everyone liked. Since the cards were personalized, I didn't feel so bad about just sending a card. Plus it's very rare to have a good picture with the entire family in it since someone has to hold the camera, so we get something out of it too.
  • Capitalize on baby cuteness. This year I am planning to make some ornaments and include that with our personalized cards. I'll get cute baby footprints on bakable clay, and the total cost should be under $10. It shouldn't be too much in postage to send them either.
  • Hit the thrift stores and after-holiday sales. Last week, I found a brand new in-package Shriek toy for under $2. I also have gift sets that I bought at 75% - 90% off after last Christmas. Keep checking the clearance sections at stores like CVS, Walgreens, or RiteAid. Often times you can find odd-and-ends in there for next to nothing that will sure be a hit with someone you know.
  • Make your own gift wrap. You know it's just going to get ripped up and tossed, so why bother with spending good money on gift wrap? If you have a toddler, get a roll of butcher paper and some crayons and tell 'em to go to town. If I end up wrapping anything, I plan on using enlisting those cute baby footsies.
  • Remember the true meaning of Christmas. As absurd as it seems, Christmas is not about stuff. It's about family. Christmas is not a time for you to show off how rich you are and to give the most envied gift of the party. A homemade card from his grandchild will mean a lot more to your dad than a set of new golf clubs. Just remember what Christmas is really all about and use that to guide you.
And my last tip...? Panic early. Trust me...if you panic early, you will be all panicked out by the time Christmas actually rolls around. And you'll be way ahead of the game too. I doubt many other people will be trolling around the clearance sections or thrift shops for potential Christmas presents...!

1 comment:

Leslie said...

Congratulations! You won a Mambo Sprouts coupon book & a coupon organizer @ The Healthy Hearth!

Please email your shipping address to at the_healthy_hearth@gmail.com so I can send out your package.

Thanks so much!

-Leslie @ The Healthy Hearth
http://the-healthy-hearth.blogspot.com/

 
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