If you’re already on a tight budget, the holidays can really give your finances a kick, especially if you are trying to make things seems better for the kids than they really are feeling to you, but there are some things you can do.
Celebrating the Holidays Without Wrecking Your Budget
If gift-giving is an important part of your holiday celebration, but your finances are tight, first, give yourself a break.
- Stop and think about the gifts you gave last year.
- They probably felt really important and special at the time – but do you remember them now – and more importantly – do the people you gave the gifts to remember what they got for Christmas last year?
- If they are young children or even teenagers, it’s not very likely that they do.
- Depending on the child’s age, if we’re talking about holiday gifts for children, one or two special gifts will do, because it’s really your time and the traditions you create that make the season – not the gifts.
- Think back to your own childhood – do you remember what you got for Christmas?
- Or, do you remember baking cookies with your Mom or maybe you Grandmother?
- I remember gluing strips of newspaper ads into a chain and decorating the tree when I was very young. I don’t remember the gifts that year – just the traditions – and it’s like that for most people.
- It’s also OK to make at least some of the gifts you give – it shows more thought and affection than store-bought gifts – and all but the most materialistic will appreciate that personal touch and care.
- If you absolutely feel you have to spend, spend, spend for Christmas, then, at least, shop sales – research prices online, and if buying online, use coupon codes and sites that offer rewards.
Getting Back on Track if You Overspent at Christmas
Overspending can make you feel like you have done something really horrible – and it can leave you feeling desperate and upset, and even like a failure.
Again – give yourself a break – what’s done is done and there’s no better time to start picking up the pieces of your shattered budget than right now.
My book, Personal Finance for Women: How to Stop Struggling and Making the Best of Starting Over, will be marked down through the holiday season and the early part of 2016 to help you start the year out right.
So, hey, if you got a new Kindle or tablet for Christmas, or if you just want to get your budget under control and want some inexpensive motivation and tips, check it out and be sure to let me know what you think of it.