December 31, 2007


Two More Tins

Filed under: Craft Project,Debt Reduction,Organize,Save Money — sandilarson @ 8:27 am

Use the next largest tin for your Christmas fund.  If you or other members of the family might be inclined to dip into the fund for “emergencies” during the year, use this method to insure success.  Using a chisel or screwdriver, punch a coin slot into the lid of the tin.  Make sure it’s big enough for quarters and folded bills, but not big enough to shake money through.  Then, using a strong glue, glue the lid to the tin.  This will discourage all but the most determined from borrowing from the fund.  Place the tin in a prominent place where the entire family can have access to it.

Use the next largest tin for your wish list. Put a memo pad and pen in the tin, or glue a magnet on each, and attach them outside the tin.  Throughout the year, when you shop with your kids, and they ask for something, tell them they can write the item down, put it in the wish tin, and then let them put the money in the Christmas tin.  Do this for yourself and your spouse as well.  For example, instead of buying a new shirt for yourself, write down the store, price, size, etc. on the memo pad, drop it in the wish tin, and place the money you saved into the Christmas fund.  Make sure each family member puts their name on their wish so you will remember later.

December 29, 2007


Clean Out Your Tins

Filed under: Uncategorized — sandilarson @ 8:54 am

Clean out those tins you saved from the popcorn and cookie purchases.  Use the largest one for stocking stuffer items you’ll pick up during the year.  Find an accessible place somewhere that the kids or spouses won’t be likely to look.  In my house no one but me ever looks in the broom closet behind the vacuum cleaner.  Throughout the year, as you find appropriate items on sale, purchase them and place them in the tin.

December 28, 2007


Find a Craft and Fabric Store

Filed under: Save Money,Shopping Tips — sandilarson @ 8:30 am

Even if you don’t sew or craft, the fabric and craft stores often have the highest discounts on Christmas merchandise by now.  They’ve been discounting Christmas merchandise for a month already.  I’ve found discounts as high as 90% off  ribbons, wraps, cards, decorations, and giftable items like Holiday papers for scrapbookers, and Christmas Craft books and kits.  You may not sew or craft, but I’ll bet some people on your list do.

December 27, 2007


After Christmas Sales Strategies

Filed under: Debt Reduction,Organize,Save Money,Shopping Tips — sandilarson @ 9:01 am

            Watch all the sales for the next few days.  If a store has Christmas Cards, Wrap, or necessary decorations on sale for more than 50% off, consider purchasing next year’s supply now.  Don’t go if the sale price is just 50% off, the prices will get lower in a few days.

Up-date your Christmas Card Record Book.  If you’ve received gifts in the mail from family members, address Envelopes for Thank you notes.  Keep the notes handy.  Then, as the gifts are unwrapped, you can mark in pencil on the envelope where the stamp is going to go what the gift was.  A few days later, it will be simple to remember who got what from who, and make writing thank you notes much easier.  If you need thank you notes or a Christmas Card Record Book, you can get them here:

By now, those giant tins of cookies, popcorn, and other Christmas treats should be on sale for just a Dollar or two.  Buy a few of them. The treats can be used as snacks for the next couple weeks. Keep the tins.  They will be a big part  of your success next year. 

Returning items today?  Shopping the sales?  Get a head start on next year by purchasing wrap, cards, decorations, tags, and gifts.  If you’re just starting this program, you may have overspent for the Christmas you just celebrated.  If so, don’t use credit for any purchases today no matter how cheap things are.  Only use cash.  No cash?  Return that silly sweater “Aunt Beth” bought for you, and use the cash or store credit to purchase needed sale items.  It will be one of the best presents you’ve ever received, your first steps to Christmas without debt. 

After Christmas sales go on for almost two weeks.  Take your time.  The longer you wait, the lower the prices.  Your selection will be limited the longer you wait, but the prices make up for it if you aren’t real picky.  Try to purchase at least one unique roll of Christmas wrap for each member of your family.  If the price is right, get two or three rolls of each design.  If you have dollar stores in your area, their Christmas paper should be 50¢ a roll.  The quality isn’t great, but you can’t beat the price. 

December 14, 2007


Taking Care of Details

Filed under: Organize,Shopping Tips — sandilarson @ 8:59 am

Mark your calendar for any special religious services you want to attend.  Are there plays, or special events you need to attend for the kids?  Prioritize events, and extend regrets to those you don’t really want to attend.  You need time to yourself if you don’t want things getting too hectic.

Purchase any supplies you will need for Christmas Day, such as film and batteries for toys that require them.

If you usually call extended family and friends during the holidays, start now.  Later you may be too busy, they may be too busy, or the telephone circuits may be too busy. 

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