This year has been rough on all of us and it goes without saying that anyway we can save money, we all are trying our best. With the gift-giving season here, (and all the sponsored content on social media), it can feel overwhelming and near impossible to give everyone something special. Well, lucky for you, I’m one FRUGAL gal and I love finding ways to save money. It’s in my blood. You have my single-mom to thank! So here’s some tips! We hope this eases your wallet a bit!
Make Something from Scratch
I don’t know about you but anyone who takes time to make me something from scratch I instantly love, even if it’s a bit….wonky. A hand written card, a scrapbook, a apple-pie, ceramics, a song, a painting, the list goes on. This is a great one to show someone how much they mean to you while also flexing your skills (and saving MULA!) Make it memorable and personal to them. 9 times out of 10, this will be the gift the remember for years to come.
Provide a Service
In the past when I was strapped for cash but still wanted to give my parents or close friends a gift, I’d try to offer a service. For example, I LOVE cleaning and organizing. It truly thrills my soul. I would offer my parents a deep house cleaning, and organization day where they could leave the house and come back to a beautiful home. Most people would pay money for this and being able to offer it as a gift is PRICELESS. Make it cute by creating a faux certificate for them. You can find templates online and the receiver can select the day and time that works for them. Whether it’s cleaning their home, organizing their closet, running errands for them, giving them a massage, or creating art for them of their choice – it’s a unique gift that only costs you your time and energy and your loved ones will be forever grateful.
Lotto Ticket + Dinner Gift Basket
This was my favorite gift idea to give to those people in your life that you just don’t want to spend that much money on. Whether it’s a co-worker, a neighbor or your favorite teacher, this is one they won’t be getting from anyone and doesn’t cost an arm and a leg! Here’s what you need to do:
Go to your local gas station and buy 3 $1-5 scratch off Lotto tickets.
Go to the dollar store and grab a basket, pasta noodles, and pasta sauce.
Go to the local grocery store and buy a bottle of wine (Under $10)
Put it all together and viola – You just bought them dinner, drinks and a chance to win $
Split The Cost
So if there’s something on a loved ones list that may be out of your personal budget, reach out to friends and family who may also be shopping for them and split the cost of the gift. This isn’t the most ideal idea if you’re looking to have multiple presents under the tree, but it sure saves you a ton of money and still gets them something they really wanted. I remember for my 15th birthday I really wanted a CHI straightener (because PARAMORE hair duh) and all my friends chipped it to buy it for me. It was the sweetest gift and I thought of all my friends who saved their allowance (it’s so wholesome) to get me something I really wanted. That straightener stayed in my life for YEARS to come and gave me some of the best hair days of my life!
Re-Gift Items You Haven’t Used
Re-gifting has come with a huge negative connotation but in fact, I see it as a great thing. You probably bought a sweater you never ended up wearing, or got a giftcard you totally forgot about, or your mom got you another pair of house slippers you just didn’t need – re-gift it! No one will know it’s been sitting in your closet for months. Of course, make sure the tags are attached and it’s something the receiver would really want, but there’s no shame in re-gifting something that you aren’t using anyway.
I hope all these tips help you save money this year and you can remember it’s not about the amount of gifts given, or even how much money was spent, but the heart and thought behind the gift. We all know it’s been a difficult time this year. If you were one of the millions of people who lost their jobs due to COVID, know that NO ONE should expect you to give a gift this year. Just your sheer presence and strength is enough. Make sure in all the giving, you give back to yourself as well. You deserve it!