Christmas stresses me out to the limit. One reason is money, I always worry we won't be able to afford everything for Christmas. So I came up with a solution that takes all the worry of not having enough money to cover everything at Christmas. I call it my savings boxes.
Dd got a set of boxes given one year and never used them. So I took them and labeled then. I have one for Christmas, which I put $20 a week in there. So that means I put $1,040 a year in there to spend on Christmas. I take money out of there whenever I buy something for Christmas. It also helps that I shop year round for Christmas.
I then set up a Birthday box. Again I put $20 a week in there. Now this pot takes a lot longer to work, as we have certain months of the year that have more birthdays in it than others. So for the first little while, I had to keep adding to the pot to cover the months when there were more birthdays then others. However three years later, I am finding that I always have money in that pot to cover every birthday.
I also have a special occasion pot where I put $10 a week into that. We have had a few special birthdays and anniversaries over the past couple of years, so this money was used for that.
I also put money into our ING account each week for our vacation fund.
Now this works for me, and its the first thing I do when I withdraw money from the bank each week, is put money into these pots. If you find those figures too high, why not start with $5 a week? To my mind even saving $100 towards Christmas is worthwhile.
Another simple way of saving money is whenever you do your banking always make sure the last three digits of your chequing account are all zero's. For example if you have $155.67 in your chequing account, transfer the $5.67 to whatever savings account you like so that you have $150.00 in your chequing account. You will be surprised how fast that little amount adds up!!! I know Lindsay mentioned yesterday she had managed to save up nearly one thousand pounds using this method.