Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Joys of Christmas Shopping

I'm still within my Christmas budget!

This may not sound worthy of an exclamation point, given that my budget is relatively large compared to many of my readers--I have $1845 set aside. That's to cover gifts for 12 people, Christmas dinner, one round trip to a town 5 hours away to deliver gifts to some of the grandkids, one round trip to a town 2 hours north to deliver gifts to other grandkids, the tree, the greens for the house and door, the charitable contributions, and the collection plate at Christmas Mass.

But I don't recall that I've ever gotten within 15 days of Christmas and still not used my credit cards, at least not since I've been an adult.

Although it makes me anxious, I have used Ebay more than usual this Christmas. My largest expenditure was $236 for a Cricut Complete--some kind of scrapbooking device that my oldest daughter wants. I'm paying half and her sisters are contributing to the other half. It hasn't arrived yet, but I tried to keep all the safety measures in mind--paid through Paypal, bought from someone with a longish sales history, checked out the feedback, etc.

I also bought computer peripherals through Ebay. I purchased an 8 MB memory card that sells for $20+ around town for $11, including shipping. I got a 4G flashdrive for my granddaughter for $28 including shipping, when the cheapest I could find it at Circuit City or Best Buy was $34.

The tree ($20) is sitting on my porch, awaiting trimming which will happen tomorrow. The door swag ($17) is on the door. Many of the dinner supplies have been purchased. For reasons I don't understand, turkeys that sold for 19 cents a pound during Thanksgiving will be closer to 99 cents a pound at Christmas, but Christmas turkeys are a family tradition around my home. It would have been smart to buy two turkeys at Thanksgiving and save one. Unfortunately, my freezer had no room for it.

As I count up what I still have left to buy, it looks like I will actually stay within my budget.

If I can stay on target, that will be Grace's Christmas present to Grace!

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Whatever that Cricut thing is, it better clean my bathroom and spontaneously generate scrapbooks for $235.

I'm Grace. said...

LOL! I bought it, but I still don't know what it does!

Jessica said...

Hi Grace,

It's pretty good planning for Christmas and the best thing is you could avoid credit cards till now.

Shopping at Ebay has been a good experience for me. They give special offers at this time of the year. Did you come across any such offer?

It's good if you can stay within your budget and in case you feel it's going overboard, just glance through some of the tips at:

http://www.mortgagefit.com/budgeting/51tips-christmas.html
http://www.ehow.com/how_135263_stay-within-budget.html

Merry Christmas!

Jessica

Financial Fool said...

I am so impressed. You deserve a pat on the back!!!

I have had really good luck with ebay as well, even with some purchases from Europe.

Stay focused and you will make it through and stay on budget.

Don't Turkeys go on sale about a week before Christmas?

Rhea said...

Wow, $1,800! I am really glad I don't have to do Christmas. I just enjoy the lights and the fun.

Mia said...

Congrats on staying within budget and not using those cc's!!! Way to go :)

The cricut thingy cuts out designs on paper - instead of you having to cut them by hand with scizzors or buy premade ones. So you can cut a tag or an elephant or a heart or letters, etc. I'd love to have one if I could afford it!

I'm another person who has had great success using eBay. I've been a member for many years and have had only one problem out of 500+ transactions. No need to worry!

Enjoy your holiday Grace!