My husband and I have scrimped and saved and finally paid off our mortgage…8 years early on a 15 year mortgage!
As freeing as this is, it means that we are pretty much broke going into the holidays as every spare penny has gone towards the mortgage for 2 years.
We are trying to stretch each and every dollar as far as it can go.
So to that end we have had to set up a budget. One made especially to cover the months of November and December.
First we needed to come up with the amount we felt we could afford to spend over and above our standard spending on bills…our Holiday Budget
This amount would become our spending limit for the season.
Next we came up with a list of things we will be purchasing.
- Holiday Food
- Supplies for handmade gifts
- Cards and Postage
- Gift Baskets Supplies
- Charitable Giving
We then set a budget for each of the areas which became their specific spending limits…the total of these is the figure we came up with for our Holiday Budget
Being a spreadsheet wiz hubby came up with something like this free worksheet found here.
We are going track what we budgeted against what we actually spend throughout the season.
This gives us parameters for holiday spending…which actually feels freeing as I have in the past dreaded the after Christmas credit cards bills. This year I know that there will be no more spent than is budgeted.
It also has my creative juices flowing trying to come up with creative and inexpensive ideas for the holidays!
Besides it’s not about how much you spend at the holidays…
It is who you get to spend the holidays with!
So do you budget for the holidays?
Kim can also be found at the inadvertent farmer where she raises organic fruits, veggies, critters, kids, and…a camel!