7 Ways to Save Money, Time, and Energy During the Holidays

With no workshop full of elves to make it all happen like magic, this holiday season we could all use some new ideas to incorporate into our bag of tricks. Here are some tips to make the holidays flow much smoother:

1. Lighten Your Load:

Instead of hauling all of the presents across the country in suitcases and bags have them shipped so you have one less thing to worry about during what can be a stressful time. Putting the gifts in unmarked bags will save rewrapping time incase the delivery service or post office needs to inspect packages. If that photo with Santa is a family tradition instead of trying to find a parking spot and then standing in line for hours why not call a photo studio? Make an appointment to go in when it is convenient for you. Finding ways like this to shorten that list will help you to be able to enjoy the season with lest stress and strain.

2. Make a Budget:

Think ahead by making your list and be realistic. Keep track of all miscellaneous holiday expenses such as wrapping paper, stamps and postage as well as entertainment and gifts so that extra costs don’t creep up on you. This is so important during the holidays because things can get out of control so easily unless you have a budget. Some banks have a special savings account you can start a few months before the holidays and then you have money there for your holiday expenses.

3. Pick Your Priorities:

Hold a family meeting and discuss what traditions are most important to each person. Instead of trying to do all the usual family traditions determine which are most memorable and time honored so you can end up spending more quality time on the things you all enjoy most.

4. Downsize Your Gift List:

Instead of buying for everyone in the family this year agree on an old-fashioned Secret Santa gift exchange. Pull one name out of a hat and buy for them instead of everyone. Think about googling “sale” and finding deals online. Agree on a budget so gifts don’t become too extravagant.

5. Organize Your Activities:

Spending time to make a calendar that covers all your doctors appointments, religious services, parties, dates for mailing gifts, making cookies, and that Black Friday sale you don’t want to miss will help to save you time and alot of worry later on. By having it all in front of you it will help you keep on track and not over schedule your events this season.

6. Plan One Big Party:

It is easier to plan one big family party on a strategic night than several individual ones. Fixing all the specialties and going into intricate detail once can save stress and strain instead of doing this several times over the holidays. You might ask family members to bring their favorite dishes and have a pot luck.

7. Hire Help or Call Upon a Delivery Service:

To make your life easier sometimes it is worth the occasional splurge to have most anything delivered or hire help. Everything from putting up Christmas lights to having meat and vegetables delivered right to the door can help to take  some unpleasant and potentially exhausting chores off your to-do list.

 

Image from Flickr. com

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