Do you know how much you actually spend on Christmas? It can be a real eye-opener to look at your Christmas budget. A few dollars here for eggnog, a couple dollars there for the boss’s gift, $5 for the new set of lights because the old ones don’t work or you can’t find them, $20 for the ingredients for the cookies and before you know it you have spent over $100 you hadn’t planned on spending.

It isn’t just money, sometimes it is activities. You say yes to too many Christmas parties, too many shopping trips, or too many volunteer requests. For some reason at Christmas our houses have to be cleaner than normal, we cook and bake more than usual, we have presents to wrap, gifts to make, extra church services to attend and the list goes on. Sometimes we need to put our activities on a Christmas budget so we can enjoy the season.

Take some time today to identify anything you can cross off your list whether it is something causing you stress or unnecessary spending.

If you’re looking to save money this year, throw a budgeting party with friends or family. Exchange gift giving ideas and your favorite coupons or ways to save. You could also bake goodies to gift, work on crafts to give, or order items together to save on shipping or buying in bulk. You’ll get some of your gift giving taken care of, save money, and have fun while doing it!

Assignment: Plan Your Budget for the Holidays (Expenditures of both money and time!)

Use the budget sheet to outline where you anticipate spending money. It is a big holiday and often a huge part of our fall and winter expenses. Planning now will save on surprise expenses and impulse spending more later.

Also, use your calendar and carve out a few evenings or a Saturday when you don’t have outside activities. Keep that time free for you to do the things that matter to you.

For More Details: Get Yourself Organized For Christmas – Page 56

Supplies: 1) a budgeting sheet 2) calendar

Share Your Thoughts:

How does it feel to have a budget in advance? Will this project change how you spend money during the holiday season? How about putting free time on your calendar — did that give you a sense of relief? Did you eliminate an activity?

Avoiding Overwhelm:

Not sure what to eliminate from your budget or your schedule? Don’t forget to pray-cess (process through prayer).

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