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Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

Last post Mon, Dec 3 2012 8:44 PM by BargainBinge. 38 replies.
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  • Fri, Nov 23 2012 8:19 AM

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    Each year, we share our frugal tips for gift buying and our plans. It's the time of year again to finish this all up.

    If you have not read The Dollar Stretcher's week one countdown, check it out.

    How much shopping do you have left to do? Are you working with a budget? Do you have your lists planned for parties and other events?

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Fri, Nov 23 2012 8:47 AM In reply to

    • rolo
    • Top 50 Contributor
      Female
    • Joined on Wed, Apr 4 2007
    • Michigan
    • Posts 1,932

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

     We drew names this year--what a GREAT way to handle budgeting/shopping for gifts!  We also have 2 grandsons we buy presents for.  As of today? We are DONE shopping--AND the best part is that it was all done online.  We came in well under our budgeted amount--there was a $20 limit for gifts with the name drawing and we usually spend around $40 apiece on the grandsons.  

    We have one get-together this year and we have food/treat money set aside for this and for any other invites that come our way.  We love the security of planning ahead!

    Lorrie

    "People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost." ~~ Dalai Lama XIV -

  • Fri, Nov 23 2012 9:13 AM In reply to

    • brenl
    • Top 50 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Jun 4 2008
    • Wayne county
    • Posts 2,426

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    Most of mine Christmas shopping is done. I am still working on one gift for my daughter. It is some food items that she might need for college. Then it depends on how much candy my husband wants this year. If I get nothing else it won't hurt. I bought less this year them I did last year.
  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 3:59 AM In reply to

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    I have my card list made and will address the cards off and on for the next 2 weeks.  Mail them out on the 7th or so.

    I need to finish a coin purse (which will contain a g/c to a local coffee place), a pillowcase (2nd of a pair), and an afghan (one ball of yarn to go then two or 3 rows of edging).  I have faced the fact that I won't get Daddy's picture finished.

    Shopping is done except for a gift for brother, 3 or 4 g/c's, something for Daddy, and of course DH.

    More than half of the presents are wrapped.  My little tree just needs to be pulled out of the box and have batteries installed. (It's only 6 inches tall).

    Then cookies the last week before Christmas.

    re-tired

  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 8:14 AM In reply to

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    Great post because I am a junkie for Christmas. I love this time of year so much. Oh the joy! I do not have anything planned yet and browsing my options for church services and volunteer stuff... I plan to get our tree soon and decorate that weekend as well. This is my favorite activity! We will also for sure be doing holiday light tours. No nutcracker this year but some fun free holiday movie nights here will be nice! I have not done any holiday shopping yet and will not have much too do either. I would like to do some holiday baking-gift giving though this year! I have started to menu plan Christmas supper which is an Italian theme tradition here. I had a beautiful Italian pot roast planned and now my Mom is saying she doesn't want that so I either have to make something else or do 2 meat/fish based entrees. The planning for this meal starts with planning the entree and then I figure out the pasta, veggie sides, zuppa or bisque, antipasto platter, etc. after I know the main dish or main dishes. Mom has requesed raviolis for sure. Those I do NOT make homemade but do whip up a delicious brown butter/sage sauce for the squash/winter veggie filled fresh ones I can buy. I also really enjoy a side bowl of meatballs or Italian sausage. I think if I go with something like that as 1 entree the next would have to be seafood oriented. My Mom really loves crab, it's crab season here and maybe I can get a good deal with December. We'll see.

     

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~
  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 12:31 PM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    BargainBinge:
    . I love this time of year so much.

    I normally do but this year has been stressful so far.

    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 2:07 PM In reply to

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    Brandy, You know I've been missing so am not up to speed on your situation. Do take/make opportunities to relax or this season especially can be quite overwhelming.

    This household is off to a good start. Yesterday we took down and put away all the fall decor and started on Christmas. This morning DH helped get out and pack the dishes that will go to church to be used for our annual ladies' Christmas tea. In the process we now have our daily use area stocked with Christmas dishes, glasses, and coffe mugs.

    As we are overloaded with stuff and cannot remember or find what we do have, we have begun to inventory and label the big plastic boxes. I mean to make a spreadsheet so we can actually use whatever we choose to keep.

    We don't really work at the gift-giving thing. Each of us has a large want which we can afford so his has been ordered and I'll order mine when I settle on the specs.

    Others on my list who need little to nothing will be receiving Heifer Project gifts. AM

  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 2:08 PM In reply to

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

     Im jewish I donnot do christmas to much just with family who are not jewish and I have to work the christmas eve.

    chrissanne
  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 2:45 PM In reply to

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    Brandy that is really sad to even think of considering I could say the same but I'm changing my attitude as it's not even the end of the year and the season JUST started so there is totally time to turn things around. WE CAN NOT LET stress get the best of us and rip our joy of this holiday season. It's NOT worth it. Identify the stress and come up with a plan of action to combat it or keep our cool during it all. There are always solutions to stress and problems. How we react, deal and manage it is what is crucial.  You are too on top of so many things in life and ways of living to let something like silly stress rip your season. Same to me. Stand firm, tall and on guard. We must be seasonal warriors here dear!

    "Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime." ~Chinese Proverb~
  • Sat, Nov 24 2012 10:21 PM In reply to

    Re: Christmas Countdown at the Dollar Stretcher; Week One

    I think I have most of my shopping finished, as I've been doing some shopping here and there all year. I need to finish some scarves for my brother and sister in law and figure out something for my youngest brother (he's a drummer in a Christian metal band and they've been touring all year, so I'm thinking of making him a pair of fingerless mitts... not sure though).

    We usually have a prime rib for dinner (actually choice instead of prime, as it's cheaper and less fatty), but they're really expensive. I'm shopping around, but I might have to do something different this year.

    Christmas eve is easy -- we always have spaghetti! We usually have something seafood themed too since that's what my family always had, but I might be able to find some affordable shrimp at Grocery Outlet so we can have shrimp cocktails with our spaghetti. If I can't find any shrimp that fit my budget, I can fix some breaded fish fillets to have on the side instead of meatballs or Italian sausage.

    I don't know if I'll get to make homemade cookies since my semester is pretty busy in December and goes all the way to Dec. 21st this year, but I have some chubs of cookie dough in the freezer (one of sugar and one of peanut butter)... worst case scenario, I can thaw those, set out bowls of colored sugar and Hershey kisses and the kids can have fun making holiday snickerdoodles and peanut butter blossoms. They'll still count. :)

    Tomorrow the girls are going to see Santa and have their pictures taken (Munchkin still wants to, even though she's 14). Sometime in the next couple of nights, we're going to a park in Los Gatos to see the light display. I'm thinking about instituting a Popcorn & Movie night once a week, where we can all watch a holiday movie together in our jammies and eat popcorn.

    Mama to a teen and a preschooler KINDERGARTENER!! -- oh, the fun! Also co-parenting 3 other awesome kids. :)
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