|My Christmas tree never looks like this.|
My confession is I spend a lot of money on Christmas. I don't really think any of you are judging my family's choice to spend a good amount of moolah on this consumer driven holiday. (Yes, I do. I know you're judging me. You're probably talking about me behind my back too) But I am here to say I don't feel a twinge of guilt about this one.
One of the many reasons I don't feel guilty is because we don't buy a whole lot for ourselves, including the children, throughout the year. We have considerably small gifts for birthdays and even smaller ones for made up holidays like Mother's, Father's and Valentine's Day. Don't get me wrong, I love these holidays too; but we celebrate those pretty simply.
If a new gadget or expensive item catches our eye we immediately say, "That would be a great present for Christmas." We are not impulse shoppers by any stretch of the imagination. We're ruminating shoppers. Christmas shopping is perfect for us. We get to think about it for a loonngg time, almost a whole year. I have been wanting a KitchenAid stand mixer for months, yes months. Actually, ever since January. And you better believe I still want that sucker
Christmas is for those big ticket items, right? You know, besides the whole cherishing family and celebrating a miracle birth. Electronics are expensive. All my children are at those ages where plastic toys are not really an option anymore. They are talking about iPads, Kindles and laptops. (Let me be clear though, none of my children will be getting an iPad or a laptop, that's kind of a when-you-get-a-job-you-can-buy-it-yourself present) But video games, iPods and graphic tablets are not cheap either. When you're buying gifts for five people these things add up. Let's not forget we give gifts to friends and family too.
Another reason I'm guilt-free is because, as stated before, we not only plan what to buy but how we are going to afford our Christmas presents too. Starting way back in January, we began setting money aside each month to pay for a gift extravaganza. We are not going to be going in to debt to pay for Christmas. We are having a cash Christmas.
Lastly, we spend a lot of money on Christmas because we like to give presents. And I'm not going to lie, I like getting presents too. I like watching my family rip open presents and I like ripping open presents.
Please believe that I am not knocking $500 or $100 Christmas Challenges. I think those are amazing and commendable goals. I am in awe of those who make these a success. But if I am truthful with myself I wouldn't be doing it to have a less consumer crazed holiday or to save money. I would just be doing it for a challenge's sake. Our present buying isn't crazed, we are very thoughtful with our gift purchases and I don't need to save money, we've been doing that for ten/eleven months in anticipation.
So, I have gotten that off my chest. It feels good. I know this isn't the most frugal of options but we are also being pretty responsible about it too. Being responsible with money is just as important, right?
Okay. Am I the only materialistic and greedy Christmas shopper? Are there more of you out there?
By the way, I'll go ahead and tell you that we have budgeted $1200 for Christmas this year.