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Tuesday, 5 December 2017

How to do Christmas on a strict Budget?



Its everyones favourite time of year again Christmas, cozy nights by the fire, beautiful decorations, gift giving, carol singing, christmas parties and indulgent food. 
Sounds great doesn't it? well its not like this for everyone and I'm sure you know. 
When your struggling finically christmas can be really hard, hours are longer at work, everything gets busier, bills rise with the extra use of electricity and central heating, you have to buy gifts for family and friends and even people at work. 
And your wondering how the hell am i going to manage it all?
As someone who's done christmas on a budget for the last 5 years i'm going to share with you some tips & tricks, hope you find them helpful!




Gifts

Get Gift Savvy 
I've always been really good at giving gifts that look expensive but are actually very cheap, for example...
Buying cheaper chocolates or sweets and then wrapping them up nicely with a fancy ribbon and plastic film, or putting them in mason jars or a nice mug, and creating your own label on your computer or by hand.
You can even make homemade chocolates if its within budget.
Buy jewellery that is cheap but dress it up in a fancy gift box and ribbon and it looks like you've got it from the jewellers. 

Shop online
I always find shopping online much cheaper sites like amazon and ebay have high quality products that are half price or less online. 
Most online stores tend to have more offers and sales online, which you get first pick of and not to mention online shopping is so much easier! 

Charity shop
Charity stores are great for bargain finds sometimes even designer items that are almost brand new, and its going to a good cause.

Make your own
If your handy with a needle & thread or maybe paint or woodwork then put yours skills to good use. 
Find materials you have around the house at junk stores or markets, find something old and fix it up to be like new.


Remember when it comes to gifts its the thought that counts gifts aren't necessary and i don't think its what christmas is all about, we all like presents, but if people only care about what you can give them then their really not worth your time. 
I know its a very exciting time of year for kids, and if your a parent then you'll want to give them the best, it seems to always be a competition with children as to who gets the most elaborate and quantity of gifts. 
But be sure you've done your job as a parent and raised kind, grateful children that aren't materialistic. 
No matter what i'm sure your children will still love you if you don't get them the perfect gift because being the best parent has nothing to do with money! 

And if things really are very tough if you explain I'm sure your loved ones and colleagues will understand if you can't afford gifts this year, don't feel like your letting anyone down, you have to take care of your own needs first.



Decorations

I absolutely love christmas decorations, its probably my most favourite thing about christmas, I dream of the day when I have my own house and can deck it out with lights and trees and everything you can think of in a traditional and classy way of course. 
But in the meantime I just have to find pleasure in the simple decorations i hang around my room in a shared house. 
I have a very tiny tree as I don't have much space in my room for anything bigger, I put it on my bedside table and even though its not the most aesthetically pleasing tree it brings me so much joy when i wake up to it. 


Handmade decorations
Sometimes these can cost more but usually if you shop around for cheap materials it can be cost effective and handmade decorations are a so much more treasurable, and its so enjoyable to make something if you have the time. 
Last year I made a christmas bunting and I was so pleased with the results and it really brightened up my room. 

Lights
Fairy lights can be so cheap nowadays I tend to go to wilkinsons for christmas lights or online, and if you want to cut down power costs opt for battery powered instead!


With decorations you don't have to go overboard for it to look pretty keeping things minimal can be just as pretty. 



Parties 

I love a good party but they can get overwhelming, you have to buy outfits for each one, a gift for the host and possibly even chip in for food and if its your own party then you have a lot of expense on your hands. 
You have to pick and choose you might not be able to go to every party and you shouldn't worry about having a brand new outfit for each one, you can wear something old if you like. 
And if you are throwing a party then it is possible to do so on a budget

For starters you don't have to invite everyone and their mothers, keep it small with the people who matter most to you, not only will it be cheaper, but it will be more intimate and enjoyable. 
Shop at places like tesco, aldi, lidl, and asda for cheap party food and don't go overboard!
Ever notice theres so much waste after a party well thats because we all over buy, so keep it realistic. 


Stick to 1 
Sticking to one meal, one drink, and one desert can keep costs low for example serve a chilli, and just prosecco or beer for the guys this way it prevents waste, and if people don't like it they can bring their own. 
Or serve simple things like crackers, chips & dips, olives just small snacks and canap├ęs.
Most people aren't really expecting anything when they go to a party its the company that counts.



Dinner 

Christmas Dinner can be super cheap even if you are having a lot of guests, vegetables are unbelievably cheap think potatoes, parsnips, peas, carrots, and frozen veg.
And skip the turkey, sorry i'm vegan so i just had to say it, you don't have to but the turkeys will thank you for it!



Charity

I'm sure you know it but there are people way worse off than yourself, some kids have never even experienced a real christmas, there's many people and animals homeless especially at this time of year, so its important to remind yourself your children and others of this, and put your time into helping out those less fotunate volunteer at your local homeless shelter or animal shelter, contact your local church. 
Donate a gift to a child in need at my school we used to do the shoebox appeal every year we would fill a shoebox of items for a child without a family or home, and hopefully make their christmas better.


Christmas is a wonderful time of year and it can be very enjoyable even on a budget its about spending time with loves ones and being kind to others and yourself!




Hope you liked this post, let me know if i missed anything! 

Take care and have a wonderful christmas!








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