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Tips For Budgeting and Saving During The Holidays

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Winter, it's the season of Christmas, snow, eggnog, of singing carols and fairy lights. Unfortunately, it's also the season of increased expenses and bills, which can cause a lot of stress and difficulty. And when the kids have Christmas list as long as your arm, and you are trying to make ends meet while making sure they have a memorable holiday season, juggling everything can be tricky. Luckily, there are some clever ways you can save money during the holiday season and winter months.


DIY Decorations
One genius way of saving money during the winter season is to get a little crafty. Yes, that's right, get the glue guns out and why not make some of your decorations this year, rather than buying them at the store? After all, not only are they cheaper to do this way, but it's also way more fun, as well as a wonderful excuse to spend some quality festive time with the kids and create some lasting memories.

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Particularly nice looking pieces include a bottle brush Christmas village wreath, perfect for hanging on your front door and greeting guests. Alternatively, you can have a go at some easy bauble trees, made with florist's oasis, or adorable bean bag sock snowmen that will look perfect adorning any countertop during the colder months.

Resolve Heating Issues
On a more practiccal note, check your home heating system to be sure it is in working condition and ready to go after months of being idle. After all, no one will want to sit around the tree singing carols with icicles forming on their nose.

Check that your pipes are crack- and leak-free. To help with this, install heated pipe wrap for your home, as this allows the pipes to stay unfrozen without costing you a fortune in heating bills. Something you definitely won't want to be landed with after just paying out for all those Christmas celebrations.

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It's also vital that you know your hot water heater is working properly. Getting it checked at the end of summer or in early fall is a great idea, as then you know it will be all systems go when the cold weather does hit.

Set Gift Giving Guidelines (And Stick To Them!)
Urgh! Rules and Christmas presents don't sound too fun together, do they? However, they can actually have a truly positive effect on your festive celebration. The guideline I am talking about here is the rule of four, it even has its own rhyme that goes something like: "Something they want, something they need, something to wear and something to read."

The idea being that not only do you save money on all of those gifts that get open and then cast aside, but you also focus on quality items for the family that are actually needed. It is also a great way of ensuring that the festive season is more about the spirit and less about the stuff, a great Christmas lesson about materialism to be reinforced at any age.

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