Thursday, December 8, 2011

Something Old, Something New..... Quick Tips for Making the Holidays Magical AND Economical!

Here are a handful of tools to make the holidays more magical … and economical than ever, all by practicing “something old and something new.”

Something old:

1. Make sure you do an old holiday tradition. Something you do every year that brings you great joy, or something you did as a child that you would like to bring back. A few years back, I invested in the boxed set of Rudolph, Frosty, etc. and now those happy childhood memories are my children's as well... and I get to take a playful trip down memory lane every Christmas.

2. Practice the fine art of re-gifting. No, I don’t mean that old toaster. I mean something of real value and meaning. An old piece of family jewelry, hey, your favorite fishing rod. For the people who are important to you, giving them something meaningful FROM you, something that is a part of you is very powerful. When I was moving from New York, I gave my dear friend, Laura, my favorite sweater that she had always coveted. Years later, while visiting her house, I noticed that sweater tucked in her closet. I couldn’t believe she had kept it all those years. But, it was a sacrifice of love and she knew it. It was a gift she never forgot. Another example? One year, I used a three ring binder, with protective sleeves, and filled it with family recipes, family stories and pictures and gave them to the older kids. The sleeves kept everything clean and they could have some great laughs while whipping up those old recipes and looking at the crazy pictures I had added in. Re-gifting FROM YOU is thoughtful, and don’t forget, cheap. And who doesn’t want to get two birds with one stone?

Something new:

1. Try doing something NEW this holiday season. What change can you make? What can you do different? The year we spent 4 hours on Christmas day flying across the country to an exciting destination was one of our best ever. Hard to believe we even questioned it at the time. Doing something new keeps us fresh, keeps our minds stimulated and gives us the opportunity to have fun and grow in new ways. Add in a family walk after a meal, have a snowball fight, go caroling, whatever, just something different.

2. There is nothing wrong with trying something new in the gift arena, either. Picking names, limiting money spent, you name it. I know someone whose family has an ugly gift exchange game, the White Elephant game, but each person tries to find the ugliest thing possible. They start looking in the fall, at yard sales, dollar stores, etc., spending less than $5 and searching for the ugliest thing possible. Apparently, Christmas morning is “wet yourself” funny at their house. Not to mention the laughter you get while on your search! Talk about bang for your buck! The point here? Don’t be afraid to try something new or to let go of spending countless dollars and to see what happens!

Want more?

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