My new low key Christmas.

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I have been loving Rachel Cruz’s (Dave Ramsey’s daughter) facebook posts this Christmas season. She has inspired me to do just that.   No extremes.  For example, I usually do a big Christmas Eve party with my friends and family (at least 25 people), but this year my daughter very generously offered to host us at her apartment for a more low key Christmas Eve.  A delicious meal, games, and a Christmas movie….and I can’t wait.

I’m bringing the shrimp, a card table, chairs and of course, a nice bottle of red.   No massive shopping or prepping or clean up.  I am one happy camper.

I’ve also low keyed the holiday spending.  I’ve been done with Christmas shopping (except for hubby’s stocking) for a couple of weeks, and usually I second guess what I purchased and go out and purchase more.  Not this year.  I’ll take my time to finish my husband’s stocking as my goal is to fill it for under $20 out of pocket.  I have $10 Kohls cash to use as well as a JC Penny coupon…Spend $10, get $10 off (read FREE). No more rushing out to spend an enormous amount on stocking stuffers when they just get forgotten anyway.

This is the first year (in a long, long time) where any bonus or Christmas money that we get does not have to cover Christmas gifts.  A holiday miracle.

How about you? Are you overdoing it this Christmas or keeping it low key?

2015 Budget Planning.

saving_moneyIt’s that time of year when I review the past year’s spending and chart a new course for 2015.   With two college educations to pay for, there will be no room for error.

It appears 2015 will be the tightest budget yet.

Time to get creative.

Besides paying for college tuition and room and board for two, we have plans to take a trip this summer.  Savings priorities will have to be made. (**After all the medical issues I had this past fall, this one is a non-negotiable).

In order to save for the trip (destination still unknown) some of my variable expenses will probably have to be cut by 50%.  I can say with certainty that the clothing budget and the gift budget will both take hits.  I’ve found that it’s often the smaller, insignificant purchases that add up and mess up savings, so I will be extra diligent in getting personal care items and household items through couponing and my CVSing.

I’m also hoping to lower utility bills by shutting down rooms since it will be just the two of us.

Other areas that will be trimmed will include groceries.  I’m not cutting out eating out because I believe it’s important for my husband and I to get out of the house every now and again and treat ourselves.

The other part of making a budget work is the income end.  I’m happy to say that I will be getting more hours at work.  I should bring in almost $1000 more a month.  Granted I will lose a day off during the week, but I’m excited at the prospect of more income.

I’m hoping that if I’m mindful of the little expenses, the big one’s will take care of themselves.

Have you figured out your 2015 budget yet?

What Christmas means to me…one more video.

“Frozen” Christmas Lights?

 

My husband will be decorating the outside of our home today.  We like to use colored lights, but I’m thinking perhaps a little “Frozen” light show may be nice…..

What do you think?

Or, if Disney’s not your thing, perhaps this one?

So funny. I promise I’ll have more substantial posts soon!

Mary did you know?

My son-in-law showed me this beautiful video featuring an amazing acapella group called Pentatonix.  I thought I’d share it with you to continue my impromptu series on finding the reason of the season…  Pentatonix will be coming to my area in March.  I would LOVE to see them!

Enjoy!!

 

Continuing to concentrate on the meaning of Christmas….

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