Happy Saturday/1 month until Christmas/Arthur Christmas Day!
If you read yesterday’s post you’ll know I’m ridiculously excited because my lovely daughter and I will be going to a huge Christmas market today!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 (Please excuse any over-excited typos.)
So a week or two ago I shared this post –> Budget-Friendly Handmade Gifts good for Christmas and birthdays, and these Christmas ones –> Christmas Bargain Hunting, Christmas Budgeting Part 2 (Mrs. Claus also had some good ideas,) but sometimes you need to buy a gift or two, particularly for children.
I want to give you a couple of ways to plan your gifts because it’s all too easy to see something your kids will like and blow your budget. It’s no good for the kids to expect everything they want and it’s no good for the parent’s finances.
The Pinterest and YouTube crowd often use this as a guide:
(Credit: Cleverly Simple, you can find the link on my Pinterest Christmas Board)
This is a great idea as it gives them several gifts to open, but the budget for each is set by you, they could be 50p or £50 depending on your budget.
We haven’t done this intentionally, but sometimes it works out like that. We tend to buy one or two joint presents, one from dad and one from mum. If the thing she wants is more pricey then just the one joint present, but years like this one she hasn’t asked for anything over £20 so she has a couple of things… I roughly aim for £50 main present and £10-20 each for other gifts and for Santa to use.
So all her stuff comes in under £100 and she is the one I spend the most on by a long way. She knows this and because she has a birthday about 2 months away, if it’s more expensive she can put it on that list (when I’m not buying for 35 other people).
The single best piece of advice I can give is to get the kids used to the budget early on. They will understand the number of gifts before they understand money, so try to set a limit there… I’ve seen YouTubers with children close in age who say this saves arguments and restlessness as they all have the same number to open.
Most importantly of all, tell them why; help them to understand the importance of giving and sharing, that your money is for other people too. A child of 3 or 4 can quite happily pick a gift and wrap it (after a fashion) so get them to help.
It breaks my heart when parents tell me they have spent hundreds on the kids and nothing on each other… hear me clearly, I don’t mean the people who are so broke they can’t and have just scraped together a few quid to get the kids something, we’ve been there and we understand… I mean the piles of gifts as big as the tree, with none for mum and dad and none from or to their siblings, it’s just sad.
A final tip is to share the kids’ wishlists among the family… grandparents and aunties and uncles will be grateful to have suggestions, within their budget, so they have a person on their list sorted, the child gets an extra ‘want’ item and you don’t blow your budget: everyone wins!
Have a great day my friends, I’m off Christmas shopping with my ‘baby’