Feeling Scooge-y lately? A few years back, I had a bit of a meltdown and lost the true meaning of Christmas. I became very anti-presents and was feeling resentful about the money I thought I "had" to spend to have a good Christmas. I have since re-emerged from my frustration and now love the holidays again, and I did it with the following advice:
Start preparing early
I don’t mean start shopping early! A month or two before the holidays, begin to think about who you would like to give a gift to, and what that could be. I literally make lists with ideas on my computer and iPhone. This eliminates the last second dashes to the mall with all the other stressed-out people.
Make a budget and don’t feel bad about how much you can afford
It’s ok to skip gift-giving some years! The holidays are about gathering with family and friends in warmth and love. Gifts should be considered an extra way to show love and appreciation and a fun bonus for kids.
Give something meaningful
That way you won’t resent spending money on it. Take time to think about what the recipient likes doing, and what would you need/want if you were them.
People LOVE getting handmade things. Even if it’s your first attempt at knitting, they feel honoured that you wanted them to have something that you put your time and care into. There are TONS of diy ideas on Pinterest. I know some people who take up a crafty hobby just so they have something to make people for gifts!
Here are some diy ideas:
- Like painting? Paint an abstract piece. You don’t need to have major painting skills to pull this off! Check out Pinterest and YouTube for ideas and techniques!
- Knit a cozy chunky scarf
- Have a great photo of you and the recipient framed. There are lots of cheap frames at various general stores, Michael's, etc. This is especially great for parents and grandparents.
- Make candles or soaps with essential oils and herbs, there are plenty of recipes online.
- Bake some healthy treats! People get so much chocolate, cookies, desserts, christmas loaf, etc over the holidays, that it’s nice to have something to indulge in that will help them steer clear of the bad stuff. Think energy balls or wheat, dairy, and egg-free bars, cookies, or muffins! These types of recipes are not hard to find these days.
A combo of the above items can make a great gift basket!
Lastly, DO NOT go shopping without your LIST!
This helps when I do head out to the mall in that it keeps me from wandering aimlessly, buying random things that I think people might like, and ending up with things that my recipients are indifferent about, and buyers remorse as soon as I walk out of the store.
Thanks for reading! I hope these tips can help alleviate your stress this year!