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How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 03:15 PM   #1
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How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

Like most of us I like to get as much value as possible for my money. Now that I'm retired this is even more the case...I'll first think long and hard about whether I'll actually use an purchased item as much as I might first imagine, and if so whether I can buy it used, or where find the best deal possible deal, etc.

Gift giving flies in the face of all that - in fact, economists refer to the inefficiency of gift-giving as a "deadweight loss". Here's an interesting paper on it it:

http://web.centre.edu/rizzo/DWL%20of%20Christmas.pdf

My wife, on the other hand, LOVES Christmas and any other gift-giving opportunity. It's one "legitimate" means for her to funnel $$ to our adult children, and (my hunch) it also gives her a chance to demonstrate our wealth to her family (our gifts, outlays for dinner when we host, etc might cost 3-4X what her brothers and sisters spend)

If I were to add up the costs of the '06 additions to the decorations inside and outside our home (my sisters were over last weekend and told my wife our livingroom looked like a holiday gift shop), the upcharge on the electric bill, the excess food that gets tossed, and the gifts we'll buy I think it'd come in around $3000.

Cb

How about you?
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 03:22 PM   #2
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I am triing to hold the spending to $200 per kid. Getting harder as they get older.

As far a decorations we've been regurdgitating the old stuff (lights, wreaths, santas .....); most of which was picked up at AFTER Christmas sales.
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 03:48 PM   #3
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I think there is another similar thread going at the moment on this forum

I dont spend anything

I dont do christmas

I ignore it and hope it will go away

If you want to celebrate the birth of christ why does it have to involve shopping and buying stuff/crap?
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 04:38 PM   #4
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I love thanksgiving - a family/friend feast w/o all the hype and expectations.

My wife loves christmas and all the decorations, gifts, hype etc. w/ a 12 and 15yo and their "must haves"(vidio ipods, some new hand held game etc) it will be $600 - $800 total for both, then the 2 parties we have planned and family gifts/spouse gifts(gotta spring for the spouse gift - the alternative is much more "expensive" )
All together I expect it to be around $3000. I just transfered enough to handle along w/ monthly expenses -

I think I will go make a white russian and read by the wood stove - I do love this time of the year and the kids excitment - not all the darn hype and "needs" - it's tough on my frugalness .
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 04:38 PM   #5
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by claire
I ignore it and hope it will go away
I really wish that I could just skip it too. We've go so many nieces and nephews now - I feel an obligation towards them. Between them, DH's employees, parents, grandparents, etc we'll be spending around $1500. Luckily, all of our siblings and their spouses have agreed not to trade gifts anymore, so that's 8 less to buy for.

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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 04:40 PM   #6
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by claire
I think there is another similar thread going at the moment on this forum

I dont spend anything

I dont do christmas

I ignore it and hope it will go away

If you want to celebrate the birth of christ why does it have to involve shopping and buying stuff/crap?
Hmmm...read any dickens??
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 05:34 PM   #7
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I too don't do Christmas.

People spending money they don't have to buy stuff, for people they don't like, that the recipient doesn't want.

Hate the hype.




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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 06:40 PM   #8
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I do not know how much I will spend. I haven't begun to shop yet, but I usually get inexpensive gifts like wine, soap, lotion, and chocolates for the relatives with whom I spend Christmas. I also bake them some muffins or pies; one year, we gave them home-made granola.

I send my mom and brother and his family some money.

I like to give gifts to a few young children, my friends' kids and my cousins' kids--mostly clothing, books, or DVDs.

I wish I had more time. I would like to make gifts like knitted scarves, socks, or sweaters. Of course, I'd have to learn to knit first.

I don't decorate the house--it's too small and cluttered. It's all we can do to keep it picked up.

I do send Christmas cards out. I think next year, I will do an electronic greeting card for most people, like the one Trombone_Al did.
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-08-2006, 08:34 PM   #9
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by claire
If you want to celebrate the birth of christ why does it have to involve shopping and buying stuff/crap?
Since when does Christmas have anything to do with Jesus?
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-09-2006, 01:25 AM   #10
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I buy a lot of cheap (but thoughtful!) books for people... my rule is, nothing that requires batteries... that helps keep spending down! If someone complains about a thoughtful book you picked out for them, they're not much of a friend anyway.
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-09-2006, 09:19 AM   #11
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I agree Khan its a dreadful time of year

Nothing wrong with giving at christmas, why not give it to the needy/charity.
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-09-2006, 01:21 PM   #12
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by claire


Nothing wrong with giving at christmas, why not give it to the needy/charity.
I agree. We support the Salvation Army with a nice donation. They do good work.
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-09-2006, 02:30 PM   #13
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

I also like the books idea, and since my family doesn't mind used books, I can often find used books on Amazon for $1 or so (with $3.49 shipping).

For my Mom, who is under hospice care, and can't do much right now, DW and I recorded ourselves reading a number of short stories and chapters from books. I put them on CDs so she can sit and listen to them.

My sister sent DW a weird gift labelled "Open right away." It was a hanging of lots of different peppers and a clove of garlic. I'm sure it was quite pretty when it was new, but after five days in the postal system, it was all shrivelled and moldy! I don't know what she was thinking.

But to show you how my sick mind works, here's what I did: I put the pepper thing back in the plastic bag, and used it for padding in a package I'm sending to my sister.
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?
Old 12-09-2006, 05:58 PM   #14
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Re: How much will you spend on Christmas gifts?

About a month ago in another thread about "Holiday Spending Plans", John Galt mentioned about ordering some gift baskets to be sent for the hoidays. That reminded me of the baskets I used to put together, and deliver to close friends and family. So that's what I'm doing this year, and probably from here on!

We have a really neat deli that has all sorts of fancy-shmancy yummy things, and ALOT of little shops with nice little unusual gift items, knic-knacs, odds-n-endes, etc. We also have a shop, "In A Hand Basket", that sells hand made baskets. So I'm going to grab a bunch of stuff and build some baskets! (Heck, I might even build myself one!! )

So it'll probably run ~$30-$50 per basket, times 6 or 8.....Probably end up about $250-$300 total.
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