Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Holiday Stress

At the risk of being called Scrooge I'm going to go on record saying that to many people put themselves under way to much stress over the Christmas season. To start with the Christmas season shouldn't be 3 months long as the retail stores would have us believe. It should be at the most the week before the day.

The first year I was married, in the early 70s, I maxed out my credit card buying gifts for my new wife. The credit card bills still weren't completely paid off when the 8-track player and cassettes I bought her that Christmas had become obsolete. I learned something from that, don't spend money you don't have for gifts. The person your buying for will feel guilty because they didn't spend so much and you will have the ummm JOY of the bills after the holidays are over.

It's much better to give within your means, the people you are buying for have an idea how much money you have so they would feel much better with a nominal gift that says I was thinking of you without being a burden on your checkbook.

A good gift for a family is a vacation. That has worked well for me with the January Disney race adventure. Then everyone in the family can buy something while on vacation, for me that's usually new shoes or some new exercise clothes. People who love Disney like I do can usually find a nice t-shirt that's Disney related and sometimes even one that is race and Disney related.

This year think before you buy and have a plan that saves you the stress and your credit card the big hit. A small gift card makes a wonderful gift and allows the person you give it to the opportunity to get something they want. Don't forget a gift card to a restaurant is a wonderful gift and gives the receivers a excuse to get out for the evening, something they probably don't do enough of anyway.

Let's all make the Christmas season the special time of joy it's meant to be and not a season of stress and worry over gift giving.

Thanks for reading.

Rambling Panda

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