The AWESOME people over at Spouselink.org offered up a post on how to save money around the holiday season. It’s almost Christmas and goodness knows that last minute gifts, hard to shop for people and just general stuff can make money tight. I love these tips on how to save a bit while still having an awesome holiday, and these are great gifts for those last minute party invites or gifts needed! Not to mention we play the White Elephant Gift Game every year and it couldn’t be more fun while still having a budget friendly party!
A big THANK YOU to their managing editor Elizabeth Samet for this great post!
During the holidays, it’s easy to lose track of your spending. Buying gifts and wrapping paper, making travel arrangements, planning parties and outfits to go to parties; it’s all fun to plan, and it all adds up very quickly.
Here are a few ideas to keep your budget under control and plans organized so you can round out 2013 in stress-free style!
Budget-Friendly and Tasty Gifting Options
Cookie or Treat Tins
Making edible treats for friends and family are thoughtful, appreciated and easy on the wallet. Wrap your sweet treats (whatever they may be) in colorful cellophane gift bags, tie them up with a ribbon, place them in a small tin or decorative basket from your local dollar store, and there you have it! You’re ready to hand out festive and tasty trinkets to your kids’ teachers, your gal-pals, family friends and whoever else you’re looking to give gifts to this holiday season.
Jams and salsas are other gifting options that are fun and easy to prepare in bulk. Fill a jar of your choice, add a ribbon and a thoughtful note, and give to loved ones in your life. Salsa may be an unconventional wintertime gift; but when you think about it, it’s fun idea for Christmas because of the red and green flair!
Games Make the Heart Grow Fonder
For many families, it’s hard to decide what to buy for family members who have everything they could possibly want or need. Get creative this year with games; gather the family together for a new gifting tradition that won’t break the bank. Here are a few fun ideas that might inspire you and your family:
Pass the parcel
Kids and adults both love this game! To prepare, wrap a single, small gift. Then wrap another gift around the first until you have created a parcel with several layers of wrapped gifts. Now you’re ready to play a Christmas version of musical chairs with your family. Designate one person to play music – when they stop the music, whoever is holding the parcel gets to unwrap a layer and reveal their prize.
Another variation is to wrap many layers of paper (newspaper definitely works for this game, by the way) around a single gift, passing it around allowing each person in the circle to unwrap a layer until the prize in the middle is revealed.
Family Game Day
If you’re interested in some serious and competitive family time, a game day might be a fun way to spread some cheer! The person who wins each game (or round) gets to take their pick from the victory gifts under the tree.
The adults in your family might enjoy this approach to gift giving. Each person participating should bring one wrapped gift (within a specified budget) to be placed under your Christmas tree. Draw straws or pick numbers out of a hat to decide the order you will choose your gifts. One at a time, in the order that numbers have been chosen, each person gets a turn. After the first person’s first turn, players have the option to ‘steal’ already unwrapped gifts from other players or a wrapped gift that hasn’t yet been chosen. If a person’s gift is ‘stolen,’ they can then choose another wrapped gift from under the tree.
There are sure to be great laughs with this game!
The little ones in your family might enjoy a scavenger hunt that Santa has set up throughout your home!
Another great variation of this is to hide wrapped art supplies around your house. When the supplies have all been found, have a big Christmas morning breakfast followed by some mid-day crafting. Their creations can then be given as gifts or kept as keepsakes.