This is way too early.
I don’t like to do anything remotely Christmas-y until the day after Thanksgiving. At that point, bring it! But before then, I resent every Christmas Carol and display of decorations (which, by the way, I started passing in September! Ridiculous). Aside from our Christmas travel plan discussion and maybe a few random gifts picked up along the way, I really like to enjoy my Halloween and Thanksgiving sans Christmas. It’s probably just me, but I hate the feeling of being tired of Christmas Carols by the time Christmas actually gets here.
Now, I’m sure at this point you are thinking “What is this lady doing? Why bring up a holiday and then complain about it for an entire paragraph with no clear direction to your thoughts?” Well, here it is:
The Christmas Budget.
If you’re like most people, the word “Budget” freaks you out. I, however freakish it is, find it exhilarating and it makes me feel oddly powerful. I know, I have issues.
It gets crazier– I actually have a Christmas budget on my computer. Typed up all nice with columns that show who we are going to buy for and how much we are going to spend. And it has a “Total” column that makes me cringe every time.
And here’s the really crazy part– My husband and I actually use this budget. We plan it out in January (yep, for someone who doesn’t like to think of Christmas, that’s pretty early). We list out who we will need to buy for so we know how much money we need to save for December. Which is the key. Christmas isn’t some unplanned event; if you celebrate it, you know it’s coming. It’s the same day every year. It’s not even one of the holidays that fluctuates, it is always December 25th!Now, I know that everyone knows this. So, why don’t we plan for it? Why is it that, come shopping time, we just go buy our presents with very little thought to how much we are spending? Frankly, it’s because we don’t want to think about it. If we don’t think about it, we can buy our friends and family whatever we please.
I don’t want anyone to get the wrong idea; I love buying presents! I just think it should be done in a financially responsible way. I don’t want any of my family or friends to go into debt buying me a gift and I’m pretty sure they feel the same.
Now, in case you haven’t budgeted yet, I’ve got a handy dandy Christmas budget you can use! It’s just like mine, only prettier. I’m not going to lie, it’s probably going to be painful to see the total column on the list. But it would be way more painful to add up what you’ve spent AFTER Christmas.
Here is the Fresh Mommy Blog Christmas Budget! Just click on the “download” button in the top left corner and you’ll be all set.
If you are ready to make a move into getting your family on a budget, this a great step in the right direction. It’s also a great way to make sure you don’t forget anyone… Or do forget some. This is also a good time to talk to your extended families about doing a name-drawing or white elephant exchange if you don’t have enough budget to go around.