Simple ways to celebrate the holidays on a tight budget
For some of us, the holidays always seem to land during a time where everything else hits. This means a tight budget during the holidays is a common issue that most of us will face at some point in our lives. If you find yourself with a tight budget this holiday season don’t let it ruin your fun. This year, learn how to rock the holidays on a tight budget with these simple but meaningful ideas.
Focus on Meaning
Focus on the meaning of the holidays instead of the frills and trappings. The holidays are about friends and family so focus more on making memories than having a fancy holiday. Make homemade decorations, bake cookies, and spend quality time with the people you love.
Create new traditions
It’s the perfect time to create new traditions that your family will remember for years to come! Here are some ideas that you may enjoy or get you brainstorming:
- Go on a Christmas tree hunt: Growing up, my favourite tradition was going into the forest (with our free permit to cut a tree) and searching for the most perfect tree to decorate.
- Decorate on December 1st: Another thing we would do is wait until December 1st to decorate the house. December 1st also meant we could crank the Christmas carols!
- Make homemade Christmas cards: This would be a super fun afternoon activity for the whole family!
- Give to the less fortunate: I know locally, there are several businesses that set up bins to collect toys. Perhaps, you could find something similar and team up with a few friends to help take the focus off of yourself.
- Decorate a Gingerbread house: This is always a fun activity for the kids! Or decorating sugar cookies is also fun!
- Write letters to Santa: Sit down with the kids and write letters to Santa! Don’t forget to send them off! In Canada, you can send your letters to:Santa Claus
North Pole HOH OHO
- Create a holiday bucket list: This post may help you with some ideas to add to your calendar.
- Read a Christmas book every day in December: Head to your library and pick up a big stack of holiday books to read together.
- Have a Christmas movie night: One for the whole family and maybe one just for mom & dad!
- Seek out the best Christmas light display: Take a drive one night just to look at all the lights. Vote for your favourite display.
- Give Christmas PJ’s on Christmas eve: For the last few years, I have been wrapping up a pair of Christmas pajamas for both girls that I got on sale and giving it to them on Christmas eve. They love to wake up Christmas morning in their new Christmas pajamas!
Make Homemade Gifts
Save money but still enjoy the gifting part of the holidays with Homemade Christmas gifts. Use the things you have on hand to make personalized, meaningful gifts for the people you love. It’s the fact that you thought of them and wanted to do something special that makes gifts so wonderful. Baking homemade gifts is a great way to use items you have on hand to create a great gift someone will appreciate.
Earn Extra Cash
A great way to deal with a tight budget during the holidays is to work on simple ways to earn extra cash. Sell off things you do not need or crafts you have made that others can give as gifts. Cleaning houses and clearing snow are both great ways to earn extra cash as the season wears on. This is the best time of year to pick up a part-time seasonal job for extra money if you have the time to spare.
Make a Holiday Budget
To help you thrive during any time with a tight budget, create and stick to a budget. This is a plan to help your family stay on track financially. Plan all of your regular expenses first so you don’t end up making your situation worse for the sake of the holidays. This will leave you with a clear idea of how much you can really spare and how much you should try to earn instead of going ahead blindly.
Look for Free Activities
Look for free fun activities to do. You can still make the most of Christmas even when you can not afford much. Go for a stroll and check out neighborhood light displays, volunteer to help others down at the soup kitchen or food bank. Find reasons to be grateful for what you do have this season, and you will be well on your way to rocking the holidays on a tight budget!
What are your best tips for making a meaningful but frugal Christmas season?