Saving money is tricky. The general thought is that in order to save money, you need to cut back on the amount of money you spend. You know what though? That isn’t always true. Sometimes in order to save money you need to spend more money. What?! How can that be? I know, I know. I hear you asking. It’s true though, there are some occasions where you should always spend more money in order to be more frugal.
Do you love your credit cards? If you said yes, I get it. The temptation to swipe that card even if you don’t have the money can sometimes be too strong. This is especially true during the holiday season when you want to give gifts to your friends and loved ones. Credit card companies make it even harder to resist when they reward you with awesome rewards like travel miles or cash back.
If your family and friends are anything like mine, they like to drop by unannounced a lot. Never more so though than during the holiday season. The problem though is that I have kids and work and life so my house didn’t use to be what I would call guest-ready all the time. I kind of went with the “excuse the mess” motto for years. But, now that I have gotten older and more aware of how I present myself and my family, I do my best to keep my home guest-ready as often as I can. That is not to say it is always like this, but I do my best.
Let’s face it. It is hard to eat healthy in December. Heck, it’s hard to eat healthy in the last three months of the year. Between Halloween candy, Thanksgiving deliciousness and then the non-stop display of Christmas cookies, candies, cakes and pies.
A lot of online shopping has happened this last week and everyone knows it, even the people we don’t want to. That means packages are being delivered all over the world with awesome and cool Christmas presents inside and the possibility of them being stolen off your porch has increased. But don’t let that stop you from shopping online, there are ways you can safeguard your items!
When I was younger, I remember watching Home Alone and wondering how the family could possibly be traveling for Christmas. Granted, I grew up with not much money so that kind of travel was out of the realm of reality in my life. However, just the idea of going out of town on Christmas baffled me. Now that I am an adult, I am highly considering taking a vacation for the holiday and seeing what kind of new memories we can make as a family. Why? Well there are several reasons I am considering it, but after going back and forth with it, I have found that there are some really great reason to leave.
What gifts are you planning on buying for your kids or spouse this year? If it’s just another toy, gadget or pair of socks, you may want to reconsider. Think about it for a bit. How many toys do your kids have socked away in their rooms that they haven’t even touched in months? Is that what you want to spend your hard earned money on? My guess is no. So, instead of filling up your house with more stuff, why not consider spending it on experience instead?
How many Christmas’ have you celebrated as an adult? How many of those Christmas’ have been stressful? I’m going to go out on a limb and say a lot of them probably have. The holidays are stressful. Part of the stress comes just from the business of the holiday season, part comes from family (let’s face it, not everyone looks forward to those family gatherings), and last but most definitely not least is the financial aspect of needing to buy gifts for everyone on your list.
Have you created your list yet? You know, the list of all of the people that you need to shop for this holiday season? I know you have included your kids and your parents. Possibly your siblings and definitely your in laws. Nieces and nephews have probably made the list. And whoever you have drawn for in your workplace gift drawing. But is that is? Or, can you think of some other people that you should add to that list? I find myself every year scrambling to get gifts for several people that I always forget to add to my list so I have decided to create a outside list so that i can look through it each year and decide if these people should be added. If you finding yourself in the same conundrum each year as well, feel free to take a look:
Do you have a Christmas Advent Calendar? We do, and my kids absolutely love it. As soon as they wake up, they head straight to the calendar to see what’s inside. Each day holds a piece of paper with either a service idea or an activity that we will do on that day. It’s a fun way to get the kids in the Christmas spirit. If you don’t have an Advent Calendar, no worries! Just grab a Santa hat or stocking and write up these 25 different activities. Then each morning have the kids take turns and draw one out. Here are 25 ideas that are super simple, yet fun. Hopefully these will help you out!