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Christmas Gift Planning

November 12th, 2017 at 04:22 pm

This year, I am giving Christmas gifts to only 4 family members. I expect to spend a total of $270-275. As always, I'm looking for ways to reasonably stretch my dollars while giving things that will hopefully be useful and appreciated by the recipients.

For Mom, 3 separate orders of fireplace logs will be sent during the time leading up to the holidays. The 1st has already been delivered. Due to age and mobility issues, Mom can't handle bringing home a full case from the store, and appreciates the home delivery. I stagger the deliveries so she doesn't have to deal with more than she can handle at one time. I'm taking advantage of Target's free shipping during the holidays, and getting a 5% discount with my Target Red Card.

For brother, I will give cash for his travel fund. Travel is one of his greatest joys, and he likes to take a trip every couple of years but has a low income. Cash is cash, so there is no way for me to stretch my dollars on this one, but if he's happy then I'm happy.

For my niece, I will contribute to her college fund. Also, so she has something to open on Christmas day, brother and I went in on the Harry Potter items recently launched by Williams-Sonoma. This is the first time I have given her something that I think she will continue to use after she moves out of my sister's place and is on her own (well, other than the college funds of course). I like knowing that it will have some long-term utility. These are already ordered. I registered my Email and got a 15% discount as it was my first order from W-S. I also ordered on a day when they were offering free monogramming on the apron. By helping brother stretch his dollars, that leaves a few extra bucks for his travel fund. Sister will wrap them up for me (in my family no one expects anyone else to pay the ridiculously high prices for wrapping when ordering on-line, thank goodness).

For my nephew, I will contribute to his college fund. For his "open Christmas morning" gift he will get a Barnes & Noble gift card. I am not sure yet how I will purchase that to best stretch my dollars. I will be keeping an eye out for Black Friday specials. If there are none, maybe Gift Card Granny?

DH needs some new underwear and I thought about buying him some and wrapping it up for fun, but I'm not going to commit to buying that before Christmas. I'll just keep an eye out and wait until I find a great bargain, whether it's Black Friday or post-holiday clearance. We stopped exchanging gifts early in our marriage when we realized we'd rather pay off the mortgage, and the tradition has continued even though the mortgage is long gone.

There will be a White Elephant gift exchange at work (my part-time job), and I will "shop my closets" for that. Last year, my first holiday season there, I noticed that several people gave small gifts. I am thinking that I may bake some cookies and put them in cello bags in a basket so that people who want to can indulge. In an effort to keep it unique, I may make a couple recipes from DH's culture (probably different from anything they have tried before and definitely lower in sugar than the typical American Christmas cookie ... most of them are game for trying new things). As soon as I post this, I am going to schedule this on my calendar so it doesn't fall through the cracks.

I am not buying or spending a lot, but it still helps me to have a plan and start early.

5 Responses to “Christmas Gift Planning”

  1. crazyliblady Says:

    Sounds like you have a good plan for your Christmas shopping.

    You mentioned buying underwear. I recently ordered sweat pants on hanes.com. They seem to have good sales and coupons and have frequent free shipping days. Come to think of it, I need to order some for myself. I will order it on Black Friday! lol

  2. CB in the City Says:

    Love hearing how others gift at Christmas!

  3. Amber Says:

    Very nice gift ideas

  4. rob62521 Says:

    You are planning ahead. I think you have given great thought and consideration to your gifts.

  5. Liz Says:

    If you're an Ebates shooper, you can use raise.com to see if they have any B&N gift cards. You'll get 1% cash back from the purchase, plus whatever % off the gift card value. Not sure if they usually stock B&N, but worth checking out! I use them often for my own purchases. I'll add everything I want to my cart, apply any coupon codes I have, and see if I can find a gift card for the final net amount. It's become a bit of a game to me to see how much I can truly save in the end.

    Happy to refer you to either site! Although I believe for both you can just sign up.

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