I don’t know abut you, but my feelings this time of year are always mixed. On the one hand, I truly love the joy of holiday season, but at the same time, I can’t help feel a little stressed. There are so many expectations! So many things to do! So many things to buy!
As my girls get older, I am finding it increasingly important to keep my priorities in check, and especially after taking all their toys away, I am even more determined to be intentional with our time and energy. I want them to grow up knowing the true meaning of Christmas, remembering happy memories with our family, the special traditions and the joy of giving back, not just the stuff.
It can be very difficult at this time of year to keep your budget under control. There is seemingly always one more present to buy, one more ingredient to get, or one more card to send. While it is easy to put off dealing with the repercussions until later, all those little costs can add up to a lot of stress come January.
Good planning is SO key! It is so important to decide now what you can afford to spend, and to break it down into categories to get a clear idea of what that means for your family. And in the spirit of stockpiling, planning your menus, grocery lists, and gift needs ahead of time will also mean giving yourself an opportunity to stock up on the items you need when they are at their lowest possible price. For more tips on keeping your Thanksgiving & Christmas food budget in check, be sure to also read this post on How to Save on Food for the Holidays.
I have updated my Holiday Planning Workbook for 2013. This is the third year I have used this planner, and I have found it to be a very useful tool for setting our priorities as a family and for planning our holiday budget, gift list, and grocery needs all in one (super cute) place.
Print this guide and use it to plan your own stress-free, budget-friendly holiday. Here’s to a holiday season filled with joy and peace!
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Do you find the holiday season stressful or joy-filled? What are your favorite Thanksgiving and Christmas traditions? What are some things you would like to do differently this year?