Christmas lights are going up around town and the music holiday music is playing in the stores. Santa is checking his list for the second time. Do you have yours?
Long lines, filled parking lots, and picked over shelves unfortunately causes unnecessary stress. The following tips can help you develop a plan so that you can give your loved ones heartfelt gifts without breaking the bank – or your feet.
1. Create a master gift list
List the names of people that will be getting a gift, set a price limit for each, and stick to it by marking them off your list as soon as you get their gift. Take advantage of this printable gift tracker: Gift Tracker_1-1.0!
2. Start early
It is never too early to start thinking of what you are going to give this year. The long lines and heavy traffic only get worse during the holiday season. Preparing ahead of time will help you take advantage of sales and avoid the last minute shopping frenzy – just remember to add it to your list with the hiding place!
3. Create your gifts
Sometimes the most meaningful gifts don’t have price tags. Show someone you care by baking cookies, making salad dressing, or creating a digital photo book or calendar. If you are really crafty, knit a scarf or needlepoint a pillow.
4. Give experiences rather than material goods
Plan a family trip instead of purchasing individual gifts and create memories together. Give your grandchild a series of karate lessons or art classes. Surprise your spouse with a weekend away to a place you’ve both wanted to explore. Treat your mom to a day at the spa or your parents to theater tickets.
5. Make a donation
Giving to a charity that your loved one feels strongly about, in their name, show that you know them well. It will be appreciated, is clutter-free, and can be budget friendly.
6. Draw names
For large families or group of friends, drawing names simplifies the process and allows people to spend more time finding a thoughtful present.
7. Gifts that keep giving
Gift cards and season passes are great for people who do not splurge on themselves. Consider an annual pass to the zoo for your nieces and nephews or a subscription to Cooking Light magazine for your foodie friend. Give the same book to a group of friends and host book club after the holidays. Or treat a loved one to the gift of organization with a Simplicity gift card!
Tis the season for simplicity. So say no to stress and over spending and enjoy the true joys of the holiday season.