Budgeting for Christmas! (Holiday Series)

I know, I know Halloween hasn’t even passed but it is on Saturday! After that is over it is officially time to get excited about Thanksgiving and Christmas. I LOVE Christmas, it is my favorite holiday of the year. Every time it rolls around though I have mini anxiety attacks about how much money we will spend on gifts. So this year I am going to be more strict and not let my boyfriend bat his eyelashes and spend more money than we need to.

This post is apart of a Christmas series I am doing. Every Wednesday until Christmas will be a Holiday related post. In continuing with the budgeting next week will be a post on $50 gifts for men, women, and unisex. So please come back next week to check that out! I hope you enjoy these ideas they are widely used in my family and they are very helpful.

1. Secret Santa or Santa (Chinese) Gift Exchange

My family is actually very good about keeping costs low during the holidays. For Christmas we have a family fun gift exchange that is for all 18 years and older. We used to do it separated as females and males but there are only like 4 guys so their game ended quickly and wasn’t fun. So last year was our first year of unisex and it was a ton of fun! Here is a kind of rundown on how we play the game!

  1. christmasThe gifts are $50, no more, no less.
  2. We write numbers on papers (1-however many gifts there are) and everyone picks them out of a bowl.
  3. When the first person picks a gift they unwrap it for everyone to see.
  4. The second can either steal the first gift or choose to unwrap one. If the second person steals then the first person picks another gift to unwrap, they cannot steal back a gift. (no one can steal back a gift)
  5. The third person can choose to steal either from the first or second person, or unwrap a gift, and it goes on until the last person.
  6. *If someone has a gift stolen from them they can steal from someone else or choose to unwrap another gift.
  7. * Each gift can only be stolen twice.
  8. At the very end the first person can choose to switch with anyone they want or keep the gift they have.  

2. Donate Blood Plasma

Last Holiday time I started doing this, not necessarily for gifts but just for me and my boyfriend to have extra cash. He could not do it because he had a tattoo recently and we weren’t sure if he would be allowed to. Google for a possible clinic near you and see what kind of prices they offer. For my first two or three times I went, I got $50 and then every time after that it was $25 (depends upon your weight). You can go to the clinic about twice a week, you have a certain waiting time in between visits. But It could give you some good money to buy just a few more gifts.

3. Envelopes

This year I am doing this! Each person we are buying gifts for has a $50 limit and then $50 for the gift exchange. So I am putting $50 into an envelope labeled with everyone’s name and once they run out of money that is it. They get no more! We have been using it for our regular bills and spending money. I had read about people doing this for Christmas so I wanted to try it out this year!

4. Homemade Gifts

I know everyone here has a creative side! Take those talents and make homemade gifts for everyone. You can potentially save a lot of money!


5. Just do gifts for the kids

If you decide it is just going to be too hard. Just worry about gifts for your kids or the kids in the family like niece’s and nephew’s. This is what my family does and then the 18 and older play’s the game mentioned above. It makes everything soooo much easier, because our family is big and everyone also has their significant others family Christmas’ to worry about.


I hope you loved these ideas. I am sorry It is late! I am stressing about school right now but I am trying to find a good balance to get everything done!


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