One of the best funds we ever started in our journey towards debt-free living, is the Christmas fund. Seriously - a sanity saver. A Huge sanity saver.
This year, as we're blowing through the holidays, I'm reassessing that fund. The kids have gotten bigger, the lists have gotten pricier, and the party invites naturally increased as they've grown.
So I'm jotting notes, including...
- Gift Exchanges. Count all of them - Cousins/Church/School/etc. Include those dollar gifts - we've been known to spend over $50 a year on dollar gift exchanges alone. They DO add up.
- Christmas Cards
- Postage for your Christmas cards
- Postage for mailing packages
- Holiday Baking
- Gifts in the Home - Our kids are getting older, so their lists are changing and becoming more expensive.
- Entertainment - Are there events that you pay to attend each year?
- Gift Wrap/packaging
- Travel Expenses - Do you go home for Christmas? Add it in.
- Teacher gifts
I'm sure there are more.
We've kept our fund the same the past couple years, but this year I'm keeping track again in order to reassess. At the end of the season I'll add it all up, divide by 12, and put that bit away each month. It's a HUGE relief when December rolls around to have that money put away, especially during this economy when Christmas bonuses are pretty much a perk from the past, no longer in existence.
Other Nonsense -
- My crown appointment yesterday went well. Well, considering. While under the influence of nitrous it seems I agreed to a gold crown. I laughed all the way home. A gold crown. SO not me - but the kids will get a bang out of it I guess.
- I emailed my family yesterday to try to pin down a date for the family party and not a single one of them responded which can only mean that not a single one of them has started their gift yet and they are all in denial or panic mode. Typical.
- And no, I've not started - but I have an idea - and that's half the battle.
- I have a wicked sinus headache this morning. I'll be sipping the apple cider vinegar concoction all day
- After Story hour
- and before grocery shopping
- I need to make another trip to Ikea before Christmas. But when?
- I'll be going thru the second round of carving emails today and mailing out this afternoon. Before grocery shopping.
- I ordered myself this print for my birthday. Isn't she cute? I love yellow.
- I'm shopping for a 36-38" wide six drawer dresser to replace the deacon's bench in our front entry. Salvation Army didn't have any last night - Target didn't have anything last night - and my quick browse through Craigslist didn't turn up anything. I will try the antique store soon. I'm hoping it will solve all of our hat and mitten woes. Positive thinking.
- Any suggestions on keeping hat and mittens organized would be greatly appreciated.
- It's so hard to articulate my thoughts clearly when I'm constantly interrupted by the little boys.
- That's about it for now.....