Have you finished your Christmas shopping? I haven't. I've picked up a couple of token items but for the most part, there are no outwardly signs of the holiday season at my home. With six days left, I'm not about to stress about it either.
For starters, the best gift I could get is to have my mom at home for Christmas. She's improved tremendously but her health also puts all of the shopping madness in perspective. We haven't put up a tree or anything.
I just realized that I'll likely be responsible for Christmas dinner. Wow, I'd better get busy making those dinner reservations. No, I'm not cooking nothing, and I mean that ebonically.
Anyhoo, if your holiday shopping status is the same as mine, do check out my friend Lisa's holiday tips to save you cash and stress. Oh yeah, remember that HE is the reason for the season.
Lisa's 2007 Holiday Tips
- Consider not buying any gifts for family and friends this year. Let everyone know in advance that you are striving toward a goal and you need every dime to achieve that goal.
- If you still feel the need to buy gifts, create a holiday budget immediately and keep track of every dime that you spend.
- Buy or make only what you can afford to pay for with cash this year. Do not use any credit cards.
- Make a list of everyone who you are purchasing for. Tell family and close friends with whom you are exchanging gifts that you are working with a smaller budget. Consider pulling names if you have a large family and purchase one gift instead of multiples.
- Start early on your shopping list to avoid the last minute overspending.
- Shred the convenience checks that have come in the mail ASAP.
- If you have children in your family, limit the number of gifts for each child.
- Pick up a seasonal job to pay for your holiday purchases, that way you can use your regular income to pay for your normal living expenses and your seasonal job can cover all of your holiday expenses.
- Select gifts that people need (i.e. gas cards, gift certificates to the grocery store, or a coupon for a free night of babysitting.)
- Take some time out for yourself. Instead of fighting the crowds at the mall, turn on some holiday music, enjoy a nice evening at home and remember the reason for the season.
Lisa Rogers-Cherry is a motivational speaker and the author of Lifting the Burdens of Debt: A Helpful Guide to Getting Your Debts Paid and Your Life Back on Track, ISBN # 0-9774296-0-1 (2005; $14.95). If you have a question or would like more information about the book go to www.redpenpress.com, e-mail her at [email protected], or write to Lisa Rogers-Cherry, Red Pen Press, P. O. Box 1196, Dania Beach, FL 33004.