You Can Be Santa

Merry Christmas!

The holidays are upon us and with 6 days left for Christmas shopping you had better be prepared with your list. While many people are shopping and spending a lot of money there are some people who have made themselves sad, sick, depressed, hopeless because they don’t have money for shopping.

No one wants to be Ebenezer Scrooge, but my mother used to say, “hang your basket where you can reach it. In other words, don’t stress yourself to get gifts that you cannot afford. Even if you are using your credit card, if you don’t have the money in the budget to pay off the bill in January, then you could be up for a debt challenge. So here are some tips.</p

How Not To Be Scrooge

Make a budget: see how much money you really can put out to buy gifts. Remember a week later you have to pay rent/mortgage.

Make 2 lists for people who will get a gift. One list titled MUSTS and the other IF POSSIBLE.
The “Musts” are like the immediate family, the co-workers, the doctor, teacher, the friends who stood with you throughout the year. “If Possible” are for those who you’d love to give a gift.

Write beside each name a gift idea and how much you’re going to spend. For example
Must- Mama $50
Ben $10 and so on.

Take your list with you to the store. Check off each name as you find something for each person.

Buy practical things for people not expensive things. (Talking to people who feel bad because they don’t have much money to go shopping). Think of little things that people don’t normally buy for themselves but need. One year I gave my neighbor’s teenage son a big mug and to my surprise he was so happy he said, “Now I have my own mug.” The mug was about $10 from Starbucks. If you know someone with a camera maybe they need a pouch for the camera. That is probably $20. If you have teenagers give them a $10 card to iTunes. Get a pair of gloves, scarves, make-up set. These are small things but they are practical and people need them.

Make is personal. You should have a very good idea of the person’s taste and so on. Be observant. Someone gave me a pair of earrings one Christmas. My ears are not pierced, but the person never noticed. If someone is really into gadgets you can find accessories for the gadgets.

Be creative but sensible. Ask yourself, how do I feel about giving this gift? How would I feel receiving it? That will prevent you from giving things just too way out. Don’t give gifts that people have to call you and ask you what it is and what it’s for. That’s a way out gift.

Stick to your budget. If your budget is $100 stick to it. Only go over if you know now how you will make up the difference. If your budget is $100 and you have 10 people to give a gift you are looking at $10 per person. Say for instance you saw a gift for $15 and you know the person you have in mind needs it, you can buy it but, you have to know that for a week you will bypass the tea and donut to get back that money. Please, people these are just examples). The point is stick to your budget.

There is absolutely no reason why you cannot be Santa this Christmas. You can go out and enjoy the holiday and Christmas shopping just as if you had $1000. Surprise yourself. Share this blog if you found it helpful. This is really to kickstart your Christmas shopping ideas. Build on them, tweak them. Use them. Merry Christmas.

Tips To Survive the Holidays

Surviving The Holidays

Hello world,

Merry Christmas! Whether you believe in Christmas,
Christmas shopping, Hannukah, Kwanza, or
Santa Claus, we are entering a two-week stretch of parties, get-to-gethers, gift giving and fun. The holidays are here. For me, it’s all about Christmas. I celebrate Christmas and so I will say, “Merry Christmas.”

Now, how do you survive the office parties, the family gatherings, the crowds, the opportunities to over eat, the sadness if you have no family or friends, of if you lost a loved one? I’m glad you asked.

  • Be thankful you are alive. Thankfulness will get you thinking the right thoughts and then you can take it from there.
  • Be content with what you have.Do not try to keep pace with anyone but you. If you don’t have the money to shop at Bergdorf Goodman, go to Macy’s or Sears or JC Penny and you will find sales within your budget.
  • Be yourself.When you go to the holiday parties, just be yourself. If you are not the type to drink and get loud, don’t do it. Don’t talk too much. The party is not the place to voice your dissatisfaction with the company. Walls have ears. Don’t join in any gossip.
  • Stay calm. Your ability to keep a cool head inspite of the noise and confusion especially in the shopping malls will go a long way. Just stay focused on what you are doing.
  • Eat before you go shopping. Going shopping on an empty stomach is not good. You’ll be irritated and you’ll end up eating everything in sight. Food courts are usually crowded and your patience will just run out.
  • Eat before going to the party. Why? Because if you go hungry you are going to cut and swallow and eat everything in sight and the impression on your boss and co-workers will not be good.
  • Those were just a few things to bear in mind during this holiday season. You can add more by commenting below.

    December to Remember



    Hello world,

    There are a number of things to pay attention to in this month of December.  Here are a few of them worth paying attention to for yourself or somebody you know:

    1. Medicare open enrollment period ends on December 7, 2011.  If you have elderly relatives or friends check to see if they need to change their prescription plans (Part D), or whether they are now eligible to enroll.  The age is 65 unless disabled for a year, then they can enroll before age 65.
    2. NYS Unemployment extension ended – no extension spoken of as yet, and we are smack in the middle of the holidays.  December breaks with no money for millions out of work.   Unemployment rate is down to 8%.  Really!  The Presidential candidates need to be talking about putting Americans back to work instead of worrying about who is going to get Cain’s supporters.
    3. Hanukkah is December 20.
    4. December 22 is the first day of winter.  Are we in for a white Christmas?
    5. December 25, Christmas Day  (for those who celebrate it) is on a Sunday this year.   Perfect!
    6. December 26 is Kwanza
    7. December 31 is New Year’s Eve.  Isn’t it interesting how New Year’s Eve is almost bigger than New Year’s Day?

    Visit my website for more fun stuff.  You can get there from her by clicking

    Christmas Gifts-Part 1

    Hello World,
    I was just thinking that with Black Friday just a few days away, how many people are giving gifts this holiday season, and how many people know what gift they are going to give each person on their list? Maybe the better question is to ask, how many people plan to spend more on gifts this year, and how many just plan to take some people off their list so their money can stretch? Seriously, though, have you made a list or are you just going to head out on Black Friday, get the bargains and hope to find something for everyone comes Christmas Day.
    Do you have a strategy when you hit the ground running next Friday? I strongly suggest that you have a strategy for getting the right gift (not the perfect gift) for each person. It can be done. Chances are you have the same people on your list year after year and you sort of know their likes and preferences. If that is correct, then you are well on your way to happy faces on Christmas morning. I usually make my list and beside each name I put two or three things I know they would love. When I go shopping I take the list with me and most times I am able to get everything done in one day. Well, that is my strategy. What is yours?