November 13, 2014

42 Days Till Christmas!

OH. EMM. GEEE. Can you believe it?! There are 42 days left until Christmas! Well, according to an Instagram post I saw this morning. As I get older and around this time each year, I've notice myself saying "I can't believe the year has come around so quickly!" Then the next thing you know it's New Years Eve and you're celebrating the new year. 

Are you even prepared for Christmas? Have you started planning the day and where you're going to be, what presents to buy, who is hosting Christmas and how much food you're going to consume in the one day and the days to follow on from that from all the left overs! 

I have recently found myself thinking about presents. Thinking about what presents to buy my family and friends as well as budgeting for these presents. For me around this time of year, all my bills such as insurances are due at the same time so having the "spare" money for presents is a slight squeeze for me. I find myself having to budget more tightly so that I have enough money to get everyone a little something something as well as living day to day with such necessities as food.

The hardest people to buy for at this present moment are my three beautiful and hilarious nieces. They are girls who have just reached the double digits in age (Oh, where has the time gone?) and I still find myself finding gifts that are a little too young for them or things I just don't know if they'll really like. I was thinking of getting them watches, but I know dad had recently bought them watches when he was overseas and they were just "meh". Even dad has been forced to given them money for their birthdays so that they can get something that they want or save it towards something bigger. 

Any suggestions that you have would be greatly appreciated. If you're a parent, aunty or uncle who are buying gifts for kids, let me know what you're planning on getting. Share your ideas with me and everyone else who may be struggling.  At this stage I'm leaning towards Smiggle. Not only are they great for kids of all ages (even me as I secretly love stationery!) but they are a great back-up for gifts and every kid loves them.

Hmmmm back to working out how to fund all these presents. A lesson I've long taught myself with regards to budgeting and ensuring that I can still live day-to-day and week-to-week is:

  • making a list of all the people you have to purchase a gift for (combining couples gift also helps) 
  • setting aside a maximum amount you'll spend on each gift 
  • roughly penciling in the type of gift you'll get them, as this will save you walking around the shops forever trying to find something.

Then finally, and this only works if you start this planning now, is working out how many weeks you have until Christmas and buying one or two gifts each week so that you're not blowing your weekly budget and overspending. Below are some rules I've given myself when buying Christmas gifts and something that you can use or just keep at the back of your mind:
  • I don't believe that you have to spend a lot of money on gifts for Christmas as you're buying for more people at the same time and I believe that Christmas is about spending quality time with family and friends
  • If there are gifts that you need to send overseas or interstate, plan to purchase those gifts first so that you can send them in time for them to receive the gifts just before Christmas 
  • If sending gifts via the post, remember to also budget for postage cost
  • Keep your receipts just in case a gift you buy such as clothing can be exchanged if the size is incorrect.
These are just some tips from me that I've learnt over the years when Christmas shopping and something that I thought I would share with you. Do you have your own tips and plans when purchasing Christmas presents for friends and family? Do you set a budget for yourself or do you just go all out? Do you find yourself doing all the Christmas shopping at the very last minute?

Share your Christmas story with me as I've love to hear about it and any tips that you may have so that I can learn something new myself. 

Happy Christmas shopping!

Jo xo

No comments:

Post a Comment