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Cutting back at Christmas

(15 Posts)
RedSoloCup Tue 28-Oct-14 23:40:06

It's that time of year and due to several family birthdays in Dec including two of our DC we have cut back majorly over the last few years. Here's my tips and happy to hear others:

1. myself and friends now do kids b'day presents only and just sweets at Christmas, we get each other b'day presents and aim to go out for a meal rather than buy each other presents

2. Only send cards to family members that will be offended if they don't get one as they are aged over 75.

3. Kids each get five presents from us and a stocking containing five small presents and bulked up with sweets etc (with three of them plus family presents they still have too much.

4. Use nectar / clubcard points for the extra nice Christmas food

5. Use Boots points for Christmas presents

Deeky Wed 29-Oct-14 10:09:27

3, 4 and 5 excellent ideas (cos i do them).

This year i am going one step further. One main present for eldest kids (19. 29) and a couple a little things. Both work in retail so may not get together for Christmas dinner this year so I am doing an open "Christmas" house" with plenty of food and drink and merry-ness!

I had a really hard year last year financially and have only just recovered, I am, as harsh as it seems, thinking of telling my 10 year old the truth about you know who! If you saw her list you'd understand. She keeps saying when I say "oh that's a bit expensive", "it's ok Mummy, he makes everything at his workshop"!

Don't wanna burst her little bubble but if she dosen't get all (and the right brands) on her list she's disappointed anyway.
Last year spent hours and hours online trying to get a Furby for under £50 - and she's hardly looked at it.
I would rather take her on a trip - somewhere unforgettable as memories are priceless.

Singmetosleepzzz Wed 29-Oct-14 21:21:12

Good ideas! We only do a nice big present at birthday time too and feel that Xmas has so many other things such as seeing family more, a nice. Meal etc etc that small gifts are appropriate.

I have already bought all presents for this year - I only buy presents for kids, no adult siblings or friends, and I tend to have a 10 pound budget for each child which makes it easier to budget for. I also always ask the parents what they would like so that I know it will be popular.

DH and I never buy gifts for each other - we buy something for ourselves if necessary. Today I managed to get myself some new knee high boots from Sainsbury with their 25% off promo and my nectar points - only cost 11 pounds! That is my xmas present - useful rather than something random

I also alwayskeep vouchers from theyear- this year we got a sainsbury and m and s voucher totalling 80 pounds - this will pay for any extra xmas food/treats - my target is for December to 'feel' like any other month financially! Sorry for the essay!

ssd Wed 29-Oct-14 21:35:17

singme, can you buy something in sainsburys and use your nectar points towards it then? I have about £20 in points and I'd like to get something about £45, can I use the nectar points towards this?

lecherrs Thu 30-Oct-14 10:27:36

We tend to buy the DC things they need for Christmas.

This includes clothes and items for hobbies. For example, DD is taking a ballet exam soon and will need the new colour leotard. That will be a Christmas present.

For me, it's a win win. They get more presents to open and I'm not buying them anything more than they would otherwise get.

Within their sacks, they do get a few toys but a good 70% of their presents are things they would just have been given anyway if it wasn't a Christmas present. And bizarrely, my girls like receiving their new supply of vests / socks etc. last year, DD1 specified the type of vests she wanted on her Christmas letter to FC! grin.

Deeky Thu 30-Oct-14 10:38:56

Yep always do this too. Like you said fills up the sack. My dd does question why she gets these things though when they were not on her Christmas list. But I've done it for all 3 so will continue. She def needs new vests (actually little bras this year) and now I can add smellies and make-up yaaaay!

RedSoloCup Thu 30-Oct-14 14:24:50

I found out the other day nectar card points have to be spent in lots of £12.50, so for something £14 I could only use £12.50 and had to top the rest up....

RedSoloCup Thu 30-Oct-14 14:31:13

Deeky, my 9yo has come to me today and told me she knows fc isn't real sad I've told her the truth but to keep the magic alive for her little sisters, think it's partly my fault for not being convincing enough about sending lists off etc (her main reason was that I always leave their lists on the fridge and 'he won't see them there'), oops !!

Deeky Thu 30-Oct-14 22:21:35

RedSoloCup although a little sad you have come to an era, it will be quite exciting for her to be "in" on your little secret. Think of the fun you two can have together; late night wrapping and hiding pressies whilst the little ones are asleep.
I'm pretty rubbish at sending lists too but I'm even more terrible at the Tooth Fairy thing - my dd has had a note under her pillow now for about a week and a half; I accidentally lost her last baby tooth down the sink whilst washing it so she wrote a note explaining and pleading for the £1 anyway . . . now you've reminded me, I'm gonna try and do that tonight. I end up writing notes apologising for my lateness "been really busy, sorry for the delay" etc.

RedSoloCup Fri 31-Oct-14 11:45:25

lol Deeky, it's not easy being a grown up is it?? ;)

MsAspreyDiamonds Sat 01-Nov-14 10:01:15

Have a look on the xmas bargain thread where peoplw post details of bargains & codes.

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/Christmas/2221510-Christmas-bargain-thread-14-the-one-ode-to-Tim

AloneReed Sat 01-Nov-14 10:29:17

RedSoloCup it definately isn't! and I still haven't put the £1 under the pillow . . . I am such a bad Mum or bad Tooth Fairy in this case!

annabanana19 Sat 01-Nov-14 15:22:57

DH and I never buy each other Christmas presents. Don't see the need.

I only buy for nieces and nephews (we gave 5) I stopped buying for friends kids 2 yrs ago.

I wont be buying loads of cheese and stuff I only eat. Who eats a whole Brie?! Ill buy extras like crisps and dips we all enjoy.

Got my Tescovouchers today £35 so ill double up and buy stocking fillers/DVD/CD etc in store

Humansatnav Sat 01-Nov-14 15:33:11

We have planned our list and bought most of presents for none dc today - took list and cash and stuck to list.
For food we start mow and get our own " hamper" of goodies - £5pw when we do our weekly shop and keep it in a box upstairs.
I also have planned meals for Xmas Eve/ Day/ Boxing Day and will be looking on the comparison sites for the best deals.
Me and dh don't do gifts as such, but put money aside and go shopping in the sales.

annabanana19 Sat 01-Nov-14 15:41:37

I've cut a lot over the last 2 yrs. I save with park every year and it all goes! This year is going to be a bit more expensive as Ds needs a bike ( he's 6 and his bike is 12 yrs old and way too small. It was ok for him to learn!). DD1 is coming up to 13 and is getting a laptop. Mine is slowly dying and is rather shite. All her school work is on a computer and I have no microsoft on mine so all the work she does isn't compatible with the school comps . Then DD2 is getting an Ipod. So 3 big present ans a sackfull of niknaks. That is all.

I buy biscuits for the teachers and Amazon vouchers for my brother and family as they live abroad. Easier for me!
BIL loves wine so a crate of nice red for him and the same for my dad!

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