HA! Really? You actually believed me?
Nope.. not even close actually.. HOWEVER, I am doing much more this year than I have in previous. And I mean much, much more, and much, much earlier. As I’ve stated in a previous post.. I am trying to take the approach that this year Christmas is on the 25th of NOVEMBER, instead of a month later. That way, for the first time.. ever, I will be able to enjoy the Holidays without the hustle, panic, and spending over the last month which I usually do. Oh, who am I kidding, it’s usually right up until the last week (or day) before Christmas!
Last night I was reading a finance book (which I will review in a later post), and an idea popped into my head. Why not set a budget for Christmas gifts? It’s not uncommon for family members to have a similar conversation with family and friends such as, “I’m only spending such and such an amount this year” or “We’re not going all out this year”. In all honesty, this makes perfect sense to me, however sticking to it is a different beast altogether. In reality, in this day and age.. if someone wants something.. they go out and get it. At least that’s what I’m certainly guilty of (as I try to hold back on my urge to get an iPhone to replace my perfectly fine Blackberry).
So I decided to do up a Christmas Budget, and the interesting part is, the more I got into it the better an idea it seemed to be. I was not only setting price amounts, but also jotting down notes about ideas and what to get my family and friends to whom I spend Christmas money on. Of course, the only price I didn’t put a limit on or set was Liz’s, but only due to the fact that we hadn’t discussed it yet. Truth is, we always set a limit to our spending on each other, right down to the stocking stuffers.
Getting back to the actual budget, it’s a GREAT idea to do one up, and the sooner the better. I remember having a conversation with one of my best friends a lot of years ago, and he told me that for his Christmas shopping, he has a list of things to get and usually heads out on Christmas Eve. Within an hour, all of his shopping is done. Well, as ‘last minute’ as that is, the principle is not such a bad idea, however I like the notion of doing it 2 months before Christmas even arrives!
A budget obviously also allows me to take out and pre-plan the money that I’m going to spend on Christmas. For example, if I have budgeted $100 to spend on my Mom,.I can keep an eye out for gifts within that amount of money instead of walking around aimlessly with a week to go before Christmas in a mall.
When I first decided to try to take the approach that Christmas was on November 25th, I actually thought it wouldn’t be possible. Now that I’ve got a Christmas Budget however, it’s really starting to look like one of my better ideas.