Christmas Crisis



  • What a briiliant thread I have really enjoyed reading it. Great stories, great ideas. I am really considering doing a hamper for my other half he is a nightmare to buy for has everything and what he wants he buys but he enjoys books wine etc.

    I do love christmas its a fabulous time of the year but with what goes on in the shops I had enough by december last year and just wanted it over and done with, plus we were really busy in december.

    I do think all you need is a great log fire going a bottle of wine and a cheese board to share with my OH and i'm sorted.....:D
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  • euronorris
    euronorris Posts: 12,247 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post PPI Party Pooper
    You could always go the traditional route with the stockings.

    I used to get a clementine, a shiny new penny, some chocolate coins and some bath treats in mine each year and I loved it! I looked forward to my christmas stocking, just as much as my other presents as it was about the tradition, like the half eaten mince pie and carrots on the side. And getting the above would work out so cheap.

    Just another idea.

    And my family and I only buy for the kids now and not each other. It's just too expensive otherwise. And with that, one year, my brother's kids got so many presents they got bored opening them. So he and his wife hid the other un-opened gifts until the kids asked about them. Only they never did as they were so busy with the ones they had already opened. They were re-gifted the next year instead!

    It's crazy how much we're willing to spend at Christmas when it isn't necessary. But, I think there have been loads of fantastic MSE ideas on here for pressies. :)
    February wins: Theatre tickets
  • jess444_2
    jess444_2 Posts: 1,225 Forumite

    A few years ago I decided enough was enough and told my family I was only going to buy for the children and once they reached 18 I would stop. Not only has this helped me financially, but also made Christmas a lot less stressful for me. For the last few years I have bought the children in the extended family pantomine tickets for the local theatre (about £8 each) which have gone down well. Last year myself, OH and DD's also set finacial limit and this year have decided to go one better and just club together to buy a wii to share. I may sound a bit like scrooge, but Christmas is a lot more fun for me if I don't have to spend months shopping. Also since making these changes I am able to look forward to the new year without worrying about the credit card bill.

  • mcjordi
    mcjordi Posts: 4,238 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    your not the only one whos skint this year i am too
    although i dont have much to buy only 2 nieces and 1 nephew and a few bits
    ive said to my sister that icant afford much this year. but they get plenty off trhe rest of the family anyway
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  • QueenBeruthiel
    QueenBeruthiel Posts: 234 Forumite
    edited 1 October 2009 at 7:33PM
    Last couple of posts have got me thinking now. Why on earth am I even considering throwing away the hard work I have put in over the last few months trying to turn my financial situation around, just to buy presents that no-one needs or probably even wants?


    And how we all rack (sp?) our brains trying to think of what to buy for people who have pretty much everything. I suggest - buy for your parents, but not for siblings, aunties, uncles, etc. (unless you had an aunty who brought you up, or something...). Maybe, if you are going to some-one's house on Boxing Day, for example, take a bottle of wine and a bunch of flowers. Buy for children, while remembering that the little ones will more likely play with the box than the toy in it!

    Edit: At work we do a secret santa. Last year, at my suggestion, each one of us wrote our names and underneath, a few suggestions as to what each of us would like. One way to avoid ending up with stuff you don't want, and wasting money on stuff the other person does not want.
  • dizzytina
    dizzytina Posts: 777 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Post
    have a look on the NCT website (may have to google NCT nearly new sales) and see if there are some near you before xmas. I get loads of stocking fillers from there.

    in case you don't know what it is its where parents sell their childrens toys,clothes accesories etc. its a bit like a better class jumble sale/table top sale and lots of items are like new if not brand new. I got some great bargains from the one near me 2 weeks ago for my daughter. She wanted a scooter for her birthday and my MIL was about to buy one for £35. I got a barbie one for £4 and it was almost new you couldn't tell it had been used.

    You can also register to sell so if there is one before xmas have a sort out of your childrens toys etc and take them along and you could earn some money towards other xmas pressies. NCT take a cut of your sales but last year i made £80.
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  • mooomin
    mooomin Posts: 13,703 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Im thinking £10 per hamper, including a bottle of bucks fizz, couple of beers, chocs, just thinking of what else. Also found a thread for a book lovers hamper which I also really liked and thinking of doing for OH's sister xx
    Awesome idea! M&S bucks fizz is about £2.50 (max) per bottle and is yummy :beer:
  • mooomin
    mooomin Posts: 13,703 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Ideas for next year...

    • Ebay! Anything the kids stop playing with/you don't think you'll use sell on Ebay and save money for next Christmas
    • Competitions - I do about 1 hour comping per day which is boring but you can win good things (Comedy DVD for a friend, Clinique makeup for Mr Fresian's sister for example) I enter comps I know my OH/parents etc would like if I won them
    • Shop on Boxing Day/early January. All of my "auntie" presents were done by 1st January this year - smellies which would keep, half price cashmere scarves etc. All men in the family are getting leather M&S soapbags RRP £20, cost to Frugal Fresian of £5 each :D
  • La_escocesa
    La_escocesa Posts: 3,096 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    edited 4 October 2009 at 9:31PM
    Hi, I can remember the Christmas mum told me she had to pay santa. Can remember being a bit shocked but then it made sense to me - I knew you had to pay the woman at the shop so figured Santa's 'shop' would be the same.

    I know you said you didn't think your family would be up for secret santa but last year we did Elfster (elfster dot com) and that was great. You put in your email and it emails you with the name of the person you've got to buy for. Plus, you can add a wish list so although there's a bit of surprise you can still give your mystery santa some ideas. Way more cool than pulling names out of a hat.
  • Some really great suggestions, thank you, you have given me inspiration! I am going to try and pin my kids down to a list of things they really want. I can then pick one thing off the list that I can afford and pass some of the other ideas on to grandparents and other family members. That way they get things they want without me buying them all. I am also going to start trawling ebay for things like second hand DS games.

    Have you considered an R4 card for the DS?
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