Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Three Ways to Plan a Frugal Christmas Your Family Will Want to Remember



Three Ways to Plan a Frugal Christmas Your Family Will Want to Remember
By: Denise Willams

Christmas has easily become one of the most expensive and stress-filled holidays we celebrate each year.

That's a little ironic considering Christmas all began with the birth of a Baby in a lowly stable, and was celebrated only by shepherds who were out in the fields with their sheep. Two thousand years later, we still remember that day and honor the birth of a Babe who owned few material goods yet whose life changed the world.

Is this the year you want to help your family put aside all their material expectations, and create a meaningful Christmas they will want to remember?

Here are some simple things you can do to remove financial considerations from your holiday, and focus on what's truly important.

1. Begin the Christmas season by having a frank talk with your family about the meaning of Christmas and your desire to change the emphasis of your celebrations this year. Plan ahead of time how you will express your thoughts and plans to your young children, older children and teens, or even the friends and extended family members you celebrate with.

Don't start out the conversation by saying, "We don't have the money for Christmas that we usually do..." Instead focus on your changing priorities. Christmas celebrations are not about money, but about the desires of our hearts. Speak to your loved ones from your heart, not from your wallet, about the kind of Christmas you want to celebrate this year. Otherwise, you're perpetuating the myth that Christmas is all about money.

2. Add a twist to your favorite traditions by using them to serve others. Do you fill your freezer with holiday baking each year? Go crazy decorating your Christmas tree? Maybe taking to the malls is an important way for you to get into the Christmas spirit each season.

You don't need to stop doing these activities that you look forward to each year. But now that you're planning a frugal Christmas that's not money focused, you can use these activities to serve others.

Instead of baking just for your family, share your baked goodies with shut-in folks and lonely neighbors, or hold a bake sale to raise money for a children's charity. Decorate a Christmas tree for someone who can't do it on their own, or for a homeless shelter. Instead of browsing the malls for piles of Christmas gifts like you usually do, remember those in need and buy them necessities that would make their lives easier. Contact a homeless or a women's shelter to find out what items are needed. These will cost you a lot less than buying extravagant Christmas gifts, and the joy you get from giving them will last a lot longer.

3. Plan ahead so you and your family won't feel deprived during the holiday season. Don't just write up a list of things you won't be doing this year. Make a list of all the new activities you'll be replacing them with.

If you usually spend Christmas Day opening your gifts and oohing and aahing over what everyone got, you will feel disappointed when there's not as much to open and nothing left to do on that day. Plan to fill the day with other things to keep your mind on the true meaning of the season.

Some ideas might be to hold an open house and invite everyone you know to drop by. Invite a senior who is home alone this year to come for Christmas Day. Serve a meal at a shelter. Think of ways you can bless others and then get the whole family involved in doing them.


Article Source: http://www.wahm-articles.com

Would you like to enjoy a meaningful, peace-filled Christmas this year? Denise's Christmas e-book, Saving Christmas, has 30 Christmas ideas, tips and stories that will help you do exactly that, and comes with bonuses to share with family and friends all year long. Visit SavingChristmasBook.com to download your copy and start planning a Christmas you and your family will want to remember for a lifetime.
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4 comments:

April or mama, mama, mmmm on Wed Dec 16, 09:28:00 PM 2009 said...

Wonderful artical!! 2 thumbs up!

Thanks!
April

Naomi de la Torre on Tue Dec 22, 08:25:00 AM 2009 said...

Great article! We have stopped participating in the material parts of Christmas too. We don't do gift exchanges, but we do give to charity and try to focus on the spiritual significance of the day. I agree that it is crazy to celebrate the birth of a messenger of God with materialism. It just doesn't make sense! Thanks for this wonderful post! organicmotherhoodwithcoolwhip.com

Wombat Central on Mon Dec 28, 03:48:00 PM 2009 said...

Great idea! I thought it would be nice to cut waaaay back on the gifts and do some kind of charitable act. I'm planning to put that into action next year. :)

Found a way to save on wrapping paper (and help the environment)for those gifts we do exchange:

http://wombatcentral.blogspot.com/2009/12/tied-up-with-christmas-wrapping.html

Stockpiling Mom on Mon Dec 28, 09:58:00 PM 2009 said...

I am here from MBC! I am now following you!

http://www.stockpilingmom.com

Melissa

 

Three Ways to Plan a Frugal Christmas Your Family Will Want to Remember

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