With Christmas only 6 weeks and 2 days away, I am starting a new feature for Penny Pinching. In addition to the regular daily frugal tips, I will be posting at least one way everyday to have a more frugal Christmas. Please email if you have any ideas you would like to have posted or discussed as well. I love reader feedback.
Christmas Frugal Tip #1 would have to be the one that I learned from my Grandmother. Every year, right AFTER Christmas, my Grandmother would be at the Boxing Day sales starting to purchase presents for the next year! I thought she was crazy when I was little, but as I became a grownup I saw her wisdom. I have done the same thing.
Now there are problems with this theory. #1 Childrens tastes and sizes change a lot throughout the year. Things can break, and you won't find out until a year later when the warrantee is already up or you aren't able to return items when it doesn't fit the next year.
However, there are many things that can be learned from this and it's not too late for this year. As you see a good deal and you know it will satisfy someone on your list, purchase it and put it away. There are always birthdays, Christmas presents, and schools that are looking for donations. By purchasing a little at a time you don't become overwhelmed.
This leads me to Christmas Frugal Tip #2 (Wow! What a bonus you get two for the price of one today ;)!) Have a list posted somewhere of whom you have to purchase for. Make sure it's a very inclusive list; ie, bus drivers, mail drivers, neighbours, names in the immediate family, extended, friends etc. And have a place on it for ideas to get and a place for what you actually purchased for them. Also, have a list for everything you have purchased that doesn't have an owner yet. You know those gifts that you picked up because you knew that they would fit someone from the sales.
I love OrganizedHome.com and especially their Christmas section.Here are a couple of good list ideas from there that you can use, or you can make your own. For full size forms please see their Christmas section.
Here is one to keep in your pocket so while you are out you know which presents you need to get still and you can keep your eye on instore specials:
Here is a pocket list for ideas for individuals so that you can keep an eye out for specials:
And a master home list to include prices, because you know you want to be able to brag about your deals later:)
Enjoy your day!