Surviving The Holidays On A Strict Budget

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Are you one of those families who always looked forward to the holidays?  You were so excited to see loved ones, but always hated what it took to get to that point, which is spending money for presents, food, decorations, etc.  Yep, that’s me and that has been me for the past few years.  Around this time of year, it’s my favorite time where family and friends come together to make memories, it gets colder to the point where sometimes it feels comfortable to be outside, and you can drive around to see all types of decorations.  However, as it inches closer and closer to Christmas, I get reminded that I must get a present for my child, my husband, and all my nieces and nephews.  Plus, I start to think about presents for all the family.

However, this year has been different, and I am so glad that I changed up the way that I went about Christmas this year.  I know that this will probably be one of those, “

ugh, well tell me something that I don’t know,” but just listen anyways.  So, my mom and I were talking back in September about the holidays coming up and with my husband and I paying for two houses still, it was looking bleak to get our daughter or our families a present this year.  My mom told me that she has started a layaway for Christmas for all the girls on my side of the family and maybe I should start considering doing one.  Well, I knew that my mom did layaways for years and I always thought that it was lame to do that.  I don’t know why I thought it was lame, but let me tell you that it has saved me and my wallet a ton of spending.  Here is my story on this:

In September, my husband and I took our daughter to Toys R Us for her to pick out what she wanted for Christmas.  She picked out everything that she wanted plus we even got presents for our nieces and nephews.  To our surprise, we managed to get all the hot toy items and better yet to start the layaway was FREE.  Then, we went to Wal-Mart to do the same thing since some toys are cheaper at Wal-Mart than at Toys R Us (let’s be honest) and to start the layaway there was also FREE.

So, we have been paying off the layaways little by little here and there until my family came to visit for Thanksgiving, where we were able to snag some Black Friday deals as well as pay off the layaway. Needless to say, I was so relieved that we paid everything off and even got some more presents for cheap.  Now, I will tell you and I have told my mom this several times since September, that I am so glad that I listened to her and started all of this.  Because if I didn’t listen, then my husband and I would have been stuck, like the past two years, and would only be able to get our daughter a few things, and I mean a few cheap things, that she might have wanted.  However, since we did the layaway, we could afford it and we were able to get everything that she wanted.  Also, as a side note, if your mom or dad ever tries to tell you something such as advice, ALWAYS listen to them.  It will save you time and money.  I know it did for me and I am so happy to have such a wise mom.  Fast forward to now, we are officially done shopping for Christmas and I should say that the little ones in our family should be very happy to open their presents.

So, I know that I rambled on what happened to me, but there is a point to this story.  My point is that if you can do it, then start a layaway early like in September or October.  There are a couple of reasons why I say this and one of those reasons is that those hot toy items will be available then because no one will start to think about it until probably October.  The other reason is that for all of those toys that your child has been keeping an eye on, you will be able to get it because you can pay it off little by little every month, plus the fee for starting a layaway is waived, which is super nice.

All in all, even if you are on a strict budget such as my husband and I, you will come to find out, like us, that layaways are a blessing and a terrific way to get all presents for anyone in your family.  Even if you must get a few things, it will save you a lot of money to pay off that item off here and there rather than spending all your money at one time.  Well, that’s all for now and I hope you will enjoy this mom/life tip as much as I have.  I hope you enjoy the rest of your holidays and I will see you in the next post!

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Featured In: Mom Life | Tips, Personal | November 28, 2017
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