Wednesday, November 18, 2009

How to Save $$ Throughout the Year

With all the great deals we're seeing these days on gift ideas, I decided to update my birthday/anniversary shopping list the other day. Our gift-giving budget is pretty small, especially with all the people in our two families to split it between! I like to shop for birthday gifts in advance and am always on the lookout for ways to make our gift money stretch a little further. It's fun to give the "cool" gifts but not so fun to pay the full sticker price for them because I didn't plan ahead.

So, I'm birthday shopping for the upcoming year now! This is really easy to do for the kids, especially, with all the toy deals we're seeing. I have an Excel spreadsheet with each person's name listed and the amount of money that we have to spend on them. When I find a great gift for that person, I buy it and put it in the "gift bin" (a Rubbermaid tub) and record the gift next to the recipient's name on the list. When their birthday comes around, I check the list and then go grab the gift from the bin to wrap.

For example, with the recent deal on Leapfrog's Alphabet Pal (last week you were able to get these from Target for $.49), I'd buy one and put it down on the list next to my niece's name who will be turning two. My budget for her might be $10 so I could save that extra money for Christmas next year, spend the $9 to buy her something else, too, or... you fill in the blank! She's still getting a great toy but I saved us some of our gift money!

If you have ways you save money of gift giving, please let us know in a comment below!


Christy on November 20, 2009 at 3:45 PM said...

I love the idea of a spreadsheet - I just may have to try that. I have over 40 people to buy for and sometimes I just forget who I bought for already.

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