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Christmas tips on a budget

Christmas tips on a budget

Christmas budgets could be tight this year with the cost of living crisis and high on-farm inflation, but that doesn’t mean Christmas can’t be cheerful and fun.

We asked the wonderful women of the Farming Mums NZ Facebook group for their tips for a festive Christmas without breaking the bank.

· Use preschool art as wrapping paper.

· Only cook the food you need to avoid waste.

· Take a photo of children under the Christmas tree and laminate. These can form part of your yearly décor.

· Shop Black Friday and Labour Day sales.

· Home- baking hampers make great, affordable presents.

· Choose to do a BBQ Christmas dinner instead of the traditional ham and turkey.

· Pot luck meals are a great way to share the cooking load as well as the cost.

· Use a big roll of craft paper for wrapping paper, and get the kids to decorate it.

· Follow the four gift rule for children: Something to read, something they want, something to wear and something they need.

· Start affordable traditions like watching Christmas movies together as a family or having a family games night.

· Start shopping early and shop sales through the year.

· Make home-made gifts. Pinterest has some great inspiration.

· Put a ‘voucher’ in children’s stocking for a family activity such as a picnic or trip to the beach. You can find free, printable experience vouchers online.

· Crepe paper garlands and snowflakes make fun, inexpensive decorations.

· Buy second hand gifts. Often children will not even realise toys aren’t new. Facebook marketplace and Trade Me have some fantastic bargains.

· Sew homemade tea towels for presents.

· Seed packets make cheap gifts for gardeners.

· Buy things children will need throughout the year such as clothing and school supplies, and give these as gifts.

· Buy food for non-perishable Christmas throughout the year and put aside to spread out the expense.

· Children’s hand print art makes great gifts for Grandparents

· Secret Santa is a good option for saving money.

· Give experiences rather than toys.

· Go on Christmas themes family outings like Christmas parades, light displays and markets.

by Claire Inkson