Christmas panic- Budget101 Discussion List

I'm a full-time student, and child support is my only income right now, so needless to say my budget is tight. However, I'm determined NOT to go into debt (other than my school loans - for tuition only) before I graduate. Here's where the panic sets in. I have 6 people to buy for at

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Thread: Christmas panic

  1. #1
    pseuzanne
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    I'm a full-time student, and child support is my only income right

    now, so needless to say my budget is tight. However, I'm determined

    NOT to go into debt (other than my school loans - for tuition only)

    before I graduate. Here's where the panic sets in. I have 6 people

    to buy for at Christmas (mom, dad, brother, sister-in-law, 2-year-

    old daughter, wonderful daycare provider)...not alot, but

    nevertheless it adds up. I'm looking for suggestions for inexpensive

    presents that SEEM like they cost alot more money! Unfortunately, I

    haven't had time this year to acquire free samples, peruse many yard

    sales, or earn gift cards via online companies. And, I have very

    limited time in my schedule to shop, so my normal bargain-hunting is

    a bit curtailed. With all that said, do you have any suggestions for

    the following people/interests?



    Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New England, clothes

    Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking, photography

    Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening, eclectic music

    Sister-in-Law - 48? years old, likes reading, art, eclectic music

    Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts, ride-on toys

    Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her personal interests,

    very down-to-earth person



    Help!



    Thanks,

    Suzanne








  2. #2
    Jocelyn D.
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    I understand about not having funds or time.



    My son's one on one assistant at school likes to read

    and when my son asked her what she would like to get

    as a present, she said literature. I do not like

    buying books for others because you never know what

    others have read or would want to read.



    So, I have a medium basket (church sale), wild colored

    coffee cup (church sale), Box of spiced Tea ($2),

    Bookmarks (homemade), Autism pin and bracelet ($5) and

    $10 gift certificate to the book store.



    If you day care worker is at home, give her a potted

    aloe vera plant - good for burns.



    You still have time to break up houseplants and get

    them rooted and growing into their own pots. I have a

    marriage enrichment group that I belong to that I am

    going to break my aloe vera into pretty pots or wild

    coffee cups. I need to write a little note about how

    aloe vera heals and how in a marriage we always need

    to heal ourselves and each other - sort of tie the

    theme together. Except for the pots and a bag of

    potting soil, I have gifts for 8 couples right there.

    I will probably get something else like a nice candle

    from the dollar store to go with it. But with so many

    couples, I cannot make the packages too big.



    Teachers and day care workers always need to spoil

    themselves. What about a Cd of relaxation music,

    coffee mug, box of spiced tea, pair of cotton gloves,

    moisturizer, candle all in a basket - all from the

    dollar store. (or better from a church sale or yard

    sale - just be careful not to collect to many things -

    it gets expensive quickly.)



    For your readers, have your daughter color bookmarks.

    maybe draw an outline in their favorite themes and let

    her color them (of course they are not "perfect",

    neither is my coloring) but that is why it would be

    perfect, it is her artwork. Cover them with clear

    contact paper or shipping tape to protect the art and

    keep the bookmark from ripping. add a yarn florish

    and you have fancy bookmarks.



    Your mom and sister in law might like the same type of

    spoil yourself basket at the day care worker. If you

    are that tight on funds, they will understand. Maybe,

    if you find more expensive goodies, you can tuck them

    into the basket wrapped separately or unwrapped.



    brother and dad, instead of a basket, a bucket with

    motorcyle - sponge, polishing cloth, small tool kit -

    (all from $ store)

    Gardener - leather garden gloves (I have an add for

    $0.99 for full leather garden gloves. not at the $1

    store but same price.) plant markers - I have seen a

    lot of garden tools and decorations at the dollar

    store, many are girly, but not all.



    Check out Freecycle, craigslist to see what people are

    giving away.



    Take care.



    Beckyh

    --- pseuzanne <pseuzanne@yahoo.com> wrote:





    >

    > Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New

    > England, clothes

    > Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking,

    > photography

    > Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening,

    > eclectic music

    > Sister-in-Law - 48? years old, likes reading, art,

    > eclectic music

    > Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts,

    > ride-on toys

    > Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her

    > personal interests,

    > very down-to-earth person

    >

    > Help!

    >

    > Thanks,

    > Suzanne

    >

    >





    __________________________________________________



    Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around

    http://mail.yahoo.com






  3. #3
    herberkids3
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    I would recemmend a book on Travel for your mother- perhaps one

    about New England?



    For your dad, maybe a framed picture of a motorcycle? Or a magazine

    subscription about Motorcycles?



    Your brother- ...not really sure, honestly.



    Sister-in-law- a book & maybe some candy she likes? Or a treat?



    Daughter- peruse the dollar store, get some coloring books, crayons,

    then spend about $20 on a ride-on toy (that's what the cheaper ones

    tend to cost- or ask around on a freecycle or buy/sell group about

    buying/getting one). She's 2, she's never going to remember what you

    got her, so it's a good year to skimp. She'll love anything you get

    her.



    Daycare provider- make up a plate of goodies- some homemade cookies,

    a sprinkling of hershey's kisses (use the rest for your daughter's

    stocking), and a candy cane or two. Not great, but appreciated.





    --- In Budget101_@yahoogroups.com, "pseuzanne" <pseuzanne@...> wrote:

    >

    >

    > Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New England, clothes

    > Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking, photography

    > Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening, eclectic music

    > Sister-in-Law - 48? years old, likes reading, art, eclectic music

    > Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts, ride-on toys

    > Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her personal interests,

    > very down-to-earth person

    >

    > Help!

    >

    > Thanks,

    > Suzanne

    >










  4. #4
    sandy miller
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    How about gift baskets for everyone.For example:
    a reading basket would include a book,a neat coffee cup,an inexpensive small bag of flavored coffee(tea,cocoa mix),a cross word puzzle book with a neat pen,a votive candle holder with a votive in it and a music cd.All of this(or most all of it can be bought at a dollar store.If the store does not have baskets,use another decorative holder.
    For your brother(since he likes gardening),you can alot of the time find gardening tools,etc. on clearance.And even maybe find seeds on clearance.Make him up a gardening gift basket or tin that can be used also to put his tools in.
    For a cooking basket for your father,you can find some neat cooking utensils(and sometimes even on clearance).Also you might be able to find a cookbook or two at the dollar store.Go online and search for gift jar recipes.you can make him up a couple of gift jars and put in the basket.You might also include a couple of neat potholders.
    For your daycare
    provider,make a relax basket with candle holder and a candle,a coffee cup and again some kind of hot drink,a puzzle book with a neat pen and a music cd.
    For your little one-make her a craft basket with coloring books,crayons,markers(the washable kind),blank paper for her to draw on,etc.In the craft areas,you can find some neat and fun craft kits and for not alot of money.Alot of the stores right now have clearance on all school supplies.You can buy a plastic tub to hold all this in for storage that she will be able to lift on her own.
    Again most all of these things can be bought at a dollar store and you should be able to make up each basket for anywhere from 10.00 to 20.00 each and it will look like you spent alot of time in thought and choosing.
    Hope this helps.
    Sandy

    pseuzanne <pseuzanne@yahoo.com> wrote: I'm a full-time student, and child support is my only income right
    now, so needless to say my budget is tight. However, I'm determined
    NOT to go into debt (other than my school loans - for tuition only)
    before I graduate. Here's where the panic sets in. I have 6 people
    to buy for at Christmas (mom, dad, brother, sister-in-law, 2-year-
    old daughter, wonderful daycare provider)...not alot, but
    nevertheless it adds up. I'm looking for suggestions for inexpensive
    presents that SEEM like they cost alot more money! Unfortunately, I
    haven't had time this year to acquire free samples, peruse many yard
    sales, or earn gift cards via online companies. And, I have very

    limited time in my schedule to shop, so my normal bargain-hunting is
    a bit curtailed. With all that said, do you have any suggestions for
    the following people/interests?

    Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New England, clothes
    Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking, photography
    Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening, eclectic music
    Sister-in-Law - 48? years old, likes reading, art, eclectic music
    Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts, ride-on toys
    Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her personal interests,
    very down-to-earth person

    Help!

    Thanks,
    Suzanne

    [/quote]


    &#32;_____________________________________________ _____





  5. #5
    Anggie Thompson
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    Try magazine subscriptions from Best Deal Magazines. I&#39;ve used them for years and the prices are getting cheaper. I get the hard to buy for people on my list subscriptions. I get my son&#39;s friend Sporting News. Years ago it was like $13, now I can renew it for $4.69 for a whole year. Can&#39;t beat that! They don&#39;t unwrap anything, but you can be creative with how to present the gift.

    --
    Anggie
    Fight Breast cancer......no one should die from it


  6. #6
    Joanna Anders
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    Suzanne, You could buy them each a book that matches up to their interests or hobby. I love to order books from EdwardRHamilton.com. They sell all kinds of books, for extremely cheap, and ship for a flat media rate of $3 and some change. If you wanted to take it a little further, put the book in a bag with a couplepacks of hot chocolate, coffee,or a candle. Just a thought.

    &#32;_____________________________________________ _____





  7. #7
    yoledgerwood@bellsouth.net
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    How about gift certificates from www.restaurant.com? They sell $25 GC for $6

    everyday; if you wait until closer to Christmas, they usually offer sales

    (50-75% off making them $1.50-$3 each). They are good for a year and you print

    them directly from your computer. You can enter their zip code and it will tell

    you all restaurants in the area.



    HTH - Yolonda






  8. #8
    Cynthia Lau-Work @Home United
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    Maybe you could have a dinner for them. For Christmas you could wrap a fancy

    invitation you printed on your computer. They would probably be pleased to have

    dinner cooked for them, and to spend time for you. They love you, know your

    circumstances, and should understand. I have done this when I had three babies

    at home at the same time! I have also told my dad that I would bring him desert

    once a month. I might make cookies, a lemon pie (his favorite) or tapioca

    pudding (another favorite), or maybe a loaf of bread. This was nice for him,

    didn't cost much for me, and didn't take much time. Maybe you could make coupon

    books for things you and your child could do each month for them. Go run

    errands, drop off a payment, go to the store, walk the dog, etc. I have never

    had anyone complain. Good luck! Cindy



    www.WorkAtHomeUnited.com/CindyLau








  9. #9
    Karen
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    I hope that you realize that the folks you want to buy for are likely

    on the front lines of seeing where you are. They cannot possibly

    ignore that finances are tight for you.



    Bake something for gifts or make a fruit basket.

    Create some Christmas ornamets with you daughter to give. All would

    love that.

    Can you give your folks a coupon for yard work,a car wash or a day of

    housework/Spring Cleaning? Think of this year as a gift of you and

    your time.



    If you have to spend money spend it on your daughter. Even there it

    is the special way something is given that makes it special. At age 2

    she is not going to remember what she got for Christmas but that

    someone took the time to play with her on a special day.



    One of the really neat Birthday gifts my mom gave me was a visit to

    one of her friend's home. Her cat had a litter that I was allowed to

    play with, (no we did not get to keep one.) Her friend had made

    cupcakes with sugar crystal decorations and made pink lemonade. She

    and Mom visited and the afternoon ended much too soon for me. I was

    about 6.



    The holidays are all about the stuff Visa cannot buy!



    Karen in Colorado








  10. #10
    Lori
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    I suggest not giving the adults anything, except perhaps your daycare provider and baked goods would be a nice gift for her. My family has long since stopped giving gifts to anyone but the children and no one is the worse for it. You can get more than enough to keep a two year old happy with $10 at a dollar store. Lori.

    pseuzanne <pseuzanne@yahoo.com> wrote: I'm a full-time student, and child support is my only income right
    now, so needless to say my budget is tight. However, I'm
    determined
    NOT to go into debt (other than my school loans - for tuition only)
    before I graduate. Here's where the panic sets in. I have 6 people
    to buy for at Christmas (mom, dad, brother, sister-in-law, 2-year-
    old daughter, wonderful daycare provider)...not alot, but
    nevertheless it adds up. I'm looking for suggestions for inexpensive
    presents that SEEM like they cost alot more money! Unfortunately, I
    haven't had time this year to acquire free samples, peruse many yard
    sales, or earn gift cards via online companies. And, I have very
    limited time in my schedule to shop, so my normal bargain-hunting is
    a bit curtailed. With all that said, do you have any suggestions for
    the following people/interests?

    Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New England, clothes
    Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking, photography
    Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening, eclectic music
    Sister-in-Law -
    48? years old, likes reading, art, eclectic music
    Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts, ride-on toys
    Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her personal interests,
    very down-to-earth person

    Help!

    Thanks,
    Suzanne




    &#32;_____________________________________________ _____

    Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around




  11. #11
    Cindy
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    Hi Suzanne, Your 2 year old will be impressed with less than you

    would expect. You could make a dress up box with clearance Halloween

    stuff, your cast offs and a trip or two to the thrift store (esp if

    they have bag sales.) Books from the thift store are often in good

    shape, but I know that you don't have a lot of time to look, maybe the

    $ store. Cookie mix in a jar are great gifts. They look expensive

    and they are if you buy them in the store, but they are really easy

    and cheap to make. Can you knit or crochet? Chunky yarn makes a

    scarf come together fast. Your child care provider might like to

    recieve something to use with the kids she keeps, maybe a pack of

    constuction paper, crayons....stuff you can still get on clearance

    from the back to school rush.

    Good Luck. You will be so glad that you stuck to your no debt

    decision.--- In Budget101_@yahoogroups.com, "pseuzanne"

    <pseuzanne@...>

    > the following people/interests?

    >

    > Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New England, clothes

    > Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking, photography

    > Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening, eclectic music

    > Sister-in-Law - 48? years old, likes reading, art, eclectic music

    > Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts, ride-on toys

    > Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her personal interests,

    > very down-to-earth person

    >

    > Help!

    >

    > Thanks,

    > Suzanne

    >










  12. #12
    Karen
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    This was my first thought too. But it can be embarrassing to have no

    gifts if someone gives you one. But food or baked goods are always

    nice. My granddaughters live with their other grandparents and money

    is just not there. For my birthday they brought me a bottle of

    lavender hand lotion (I like lavender)from the dollar store

    and made me a pint container of macaroni salad with peas and cheese

    and other stuff that I like. My husband doesn't like macaroni salad

    with those things in it so I never make it that way. It was a treat

    for me that lasted several days!!



    Another good gift especially for grandparents can be a picture of the

    child or you and the child together. Find a frame at dollar store or

    garage sale.



    Might suggest drawing names for adults - thus only 1 gift to buy.









    --- In Budget101_@yahoogroups.com, Lori <lorimakesquilts@...> wrote:

    >

    > I suggest not giving the adults anything, except perhaps your

    daycare provider and baked goods would be a nice gift for her. My

    family has long since stopped giving gifts to anyone but the children

    and no one is the worse for it. You can get more than enough to keep

    a two year old happy with $10 at a dollar store.

    >

    > Lori.

    >

    >

    > pseuzanne <pseuzanne@...> wrote:

    > I'm a full-time student, and child support is my only

    income right

    > now, so needless to say my budget is tight. However, I'm determined

    > NOT to go into debt (other than my school loans - for tuition only)

    > before I graduate. Here's where the panic sets in. I have 6 people

    > to buy for at Christmas (mom, dad, brother, sister-in-law, 2-year-

    > old daughter, wonderful daycare provider)...not alot, but

    > nevertheless it adds up. I'm looking for suggestions for

    inexpensive

    > presents that SEEM like they cost alot more money! Unfortunately, I

    > haven't had time this year to acquire free samples, peruse many

    yard

    > sales, or earn gift cards via online companies. And, I have very

    > limited time in my schedule to shop, so my normal bargain-hunting

    is

    > a bit curtailed. With all that said, do you have any suggestions

    for

    > the following people/interests?

    >

    > Mom - 60 years old, likes reading, travel, New England, clothes

    > Dad - 60 years old, likes motorcycling, cooking, photography

    > Brother - 40 years old, likes ice hockey, gardening, eclectic music

    > Sister-in-Law - 48? years old, likes reading, art, eclectic music

    > Daughter - 2 years old, likes reading, crafts, ride-on toys

    > Daycare - 40-something, don't really know her personal interests,

    > very down-to-earth person

    >

    > Help!

    >

    > Thanks,

    > Suzanne

    >

    >

    >

    >

    >

    > __________________________________________________

    >

    > Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around

    > http://mail.yahoo.com

    >










  13. #13
    Sherri Cline
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    What a fabulous site! Also, until Nov 4 you can enter the code spooky18 for an additional 18 percent off. I just ordered three magazines for under $12!!! Sherri

    Anggie Thompson <anggiet@gmail.com> wrote: Try magazine subscriptions from Best Deal Magazines. I've used them for years and the prices are getting cheaper. I get the hard to buy for people on my list subscriptions. I get my son's friend Sporting News. Years ago it was like $13, now I can renew it for $4.69 for a whole year. Can't beat
    that! They don't unwrap anything, but you can be creative with how to present the gift. <BR clear="all">
    --
    Anggie
    Fight Breast cancer......no one should die from it


    John 15:5 I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me, and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

    &#32;_____________________________________________ _____





  14. #14
    Virginia Widick
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic


    <DIV id="yiv2048465956"> You need to change your way of thinking regarding xmas. It is not about the presents, or how expensive or nice they are. It is about family, friends, love, etc.If you have an extremely limited amount to spend on xmas, then that is what you have. Do you have the type of family that would understand a phone call or letter explaining that you would like them to consider not buying xmas presents for the adults anymore? I thought, when I did it in my family, that it would not be well received, but it was. Everyone jumped on board with it immediately. Now we just buy for the kids, and it makes life so much easier on all, not to mention we don't get stuck with presents we don't want. Whatever members of the family I am with that year I make the adults a batch of homemade cookies, treats, whatever is their favorite thing I make. They love it, as they don't cook much, so it is well appreciated and
    used. Doesn't cost much money for that, and about an hour of time at the most. That would also work for the day care person. Or a baking mix or some other mix in a jar. Again, ingredients are not expensive, and it is homemade, so frankly, everyone I know would like that better than store bought anyways. Try a soup mix, beans are very inexpensive. I know you said you didn't have a lot of time because of school, 2 year old, etc. Well, school will be out sometimes, so you could also consider giving the adults in your life coupons for such things as babysitting, mowing the lawn, cleaning their house, running errands, coming to their house and cooking up a weeks worth of meals (they have the ingredients ready), that kind of thing. Put the dates available to be used on there, so they understand it is only between semesters. If you knit or crochet, that can be easily done between classes, at night while watching tv, etc.
    Scarfs and/ or hats do not take much time and cost very little. Again, the homemade is better to most people. It shows you gave thought and love and time. As for your 2 year old - she won't care where the stuff comes from, she won't care about brands, she won't care if new or used (good philosophies to keep up with by the way - my son is 14 and his favorite way to shop is consignment./thrift stores - he loves getting a bargain. ). Go to a consignment or thrift store and see what is there. You'd be surprized. ORganize a toy swap amongst the other moms you know with kids of similar ages. I am very glad I don't have a child that young anymore - all the lead from China - yeesh!! I have a friend who is going to give her 2 and 3 year olds large cardboard boxes for xmas as part of their presents. She says they usually play with the boxes as much as the toys anyways, so she is getting sizes from refrig
    on down, and helping them create their own clubhouses, caves, streets, whatever in their livingroom. Just move the furniture and let the imagination go. The kids are going to be allowed to decorate as they like. She will have crayons, markers, stickers, etc. for them to use. She feels it should last thru winter when you can't really go outside anyways. I wish I had thought of that when my son was little - that would have been the best xmas present he ever received. Anyways, hope I gave you some good ideas. Remember, it is not the quality or quantity, it is the thought and love. Virg


  15. #15
    Katherine Lassiter
    Guest

    Default Christmas panic



    I hope I do not stir the wrath of anyone about what I am going to say... Very often, when looking for gift ideas, whether it is for teachers and family members, suggestions are made to purchase candles and shower gel at dollar stores. I am sure others have, but I have never received a candle or shower gel from a dollar store that was worth the dollar. The cheap candles smell like wax and the cheap gels and bubble bath do not lather or smell good. You can get Yankee, Village or Olde Virginia brand votive candle for under $2 and pair them with a votive holder from the dollar store. Wrap in cellophane, tie with a ribbon and that is a gift that can be enjoyed. Bath and Body sells 2 oz. bottles of bubble bath, shower gel, and lotion that are excellent quality. I'd rather get and give small baskets or gift bags of nice things than big displays of junk. I am going to crawl under my desk and hide now. Kathy

    &#32;_____________________________________________ _____





 

 
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