Friday, 1 December 2017

How To Stay On Budget At Christmas Plus M & S Hamper GIVEAWAY

For most families Christmas is a really expensive time of year and it takes a lot of planning and budgeting to make sure that you don't get into debt to buy the things that you need

Peanut and the golden child Christmas eve 2011!!!

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Here are our 5 top tips for keeping on top of the Christmas budget

1. Savings
I don't have a great deal to put away every month but try and put £30 a month to spend at Christmas time. There are lots of great savings accounts around you just need to have a little look and shop around a bit to find the best access/interest for you



2. Budget
Everybody wants to be able to buy their kids everything they want, unfortunately it's just not possible you have to have a realistic budget and make sure you stick to it as much as you can. Now every family's budget is different but the important thing is knowing what you can afford and then sticking to it.

3. Planning
It's really easy when your children are little to plan ahead and buy things months in advance it's not quite as easy when your children get older and their Christmas list can change from day today even hour the hour. We try wherever possible to buy things in the sales, we know that we may not know what the big presents will be until close to Christmas time but things like clothes, Christmas pyjamas and stocking fillers generally follow the same pattern every year and so we can buy them in the sales throughout the year or pick them up when we see them on special.

We also know that there are certain things that will always go down a storm currently LEGO Star Wars and anything crafty these things can make it easier to plan in advance and by when shops have special offers on

4 Ask Family

I don't think its rude or unreasonably to have suggestions on hand for family and friend who buy for you children. Now I'm not talking catalogue numbers and unbreakable rules here, bu I know my family will ask what the kids are into right now or if there's anything they need, So broad suggestions like 'She's really into science right ow' Or 'he has seen x, y  and z' are helpful for family members. It also opens a discussion so if you know your child is after a really expensive present people may want to chip in and help them get it. People love buying resents and really love buying the things that they know will be used and lived


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5 Talk To Your Kids

Kids hear a lot in the playground about what others are getting for Christmas and its easy for them to start comparing , but I really believe its important for children to understand we are all different, our finances and priorities differ from family to family, for us we place higher importance on travel, experiences and holidays than expensive toys and our kids have all grown up with that ethos so they know our budget may be less than their pals'. We also give pocket money and encourage our kids to sell any toys they no longer play with in order to save for the new and expensive stuff, for example The Golden boy wants a Sound Moov but we've explained that his list has already gone to Santa so he may have to save for it himself. He's now selling his unused Playmobil and making a fair dent in his target!

I think children understand more than we give them credit for and I'd rather be open and honest with our kids to explain we can't afford 3 I pads than try to get into debt and 'keep up with the joneses' so to speak

So with money saving and Christmas in mind, I'm really pleased to be running a giveaway courtesy of Newcastle Building Society for this amazing  Marks and Spencer Hamper


The Hampton Hamper

Simply fill out the form below to be in with a chance of winning Prize drawn on 10th December and winner must accept prize within 5 days of notification or an alternative winner will be drawn 


How do you stay on track at Christmas?
a Rafflecopter giveaway


T and C - UK entrants only , winner must reply by email within 5 days in order to accept prize winner will be disqualified and an alternative re drawn

*This is a collaborative post

133 comments:

  1. I put a small amount of money by every month all year round so when I get to anyone's Birthdays or Christmas there is money available

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  2. I buy througout the year and save money each month!

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  3. I buy a bit each month and have a pad to tick people off!
    Kelly L @kELLYCLOGGS

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  4. I save for Christmas and I buy a few gifts throughout the year to spread the cost.

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  5. I try to put a few pounds in a separate account every week throughout the year

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  6. I try to buy throughout the year rather than last minute :)

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  7. i buy throughout the year, looking for sales and discounts

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  8. I buy in the January sales for the following year and save money each month.

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  9. With great difficulty! Pick things up at the sales throughout the year and keep them in my Christmas cupboard. Stick to a list.

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  10. I pick things up joining the year

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  11. I buy things through the year and also buy stuff in the sales

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  12. We save each month and buy throughout year if there's bargains.

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  13. I buy things in the sales and so spend so much each month on presents

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  14. Buy Xmas decs in the summer when no one else is thinking about Christmas.

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  15. We try to put a bit away each month and set a present buying budget(which we usually stick to! )

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  16. buy in the sales throughout the year

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  17. I start in the January sales and buy in the sales throughout the year. Food wise I buy a little something, non pereshable a week and put it away, make lists and stick to them

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  18. I buy things though out the year and save my Tesco Clubcard points for the Christmas food shop which comes in handy. x

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  19. I buy all through the year and save various points (boots, nectar, Tesco) to spend at Christmas!

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  20. I try to spread it out throughout the year as much as I can, by buying gift wrap, cards etc in the January sales, and then picking up small gifts every now and then, or putting money into a savings pot. I also start selling a lot on Facebook, gumtree, eBay etc from October to raise funds to spend!

    It can be really hard, but I've not had any troubles yet.

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  21. I try and buy things throughout the year when I see them on offer.

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  22. put some buy for Christmas at the beginning of the year to ease the burden when the time comes

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  23. I am a last minute shopper but save during the year.

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  24. I buy presents throughout the year :)

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  25. I save during the year and buy in the sales
    Batch baking instead of freshness and takeaways saves a fortune

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  26. I buy presents throughout the year. We have a new thing where all our stocking presents have to be bought in sales or promotions. Makes it much more fun, you get better presents and it spreads the cost!

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  27. I don't have many people to buy for and I'm on my own so don't do anything special, so it's not really an issue

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  28. I buy through the year and spread the cost

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  29. I buy bargains throughout the year, put a bit of money aside each week and just don’t go over the top

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  30. Starting early and spreading the cost over the year :) buying a few gifts each week. Also shopping for bargains when shops have sales on x

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  31. buy bits throughout the year xx

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  32. Heating and my Christmas meat are two things I do not scrimp on at this time of year. Throughout the year I collect vouchers etc that all add up to Christmas shopping being e little easier. Sim

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  33. Make a list of everything we are going to need and start planning at the start of November, matching up with what's saved. Seems early but time flies!

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  34. I try to save my supermarket vouchers for Christmas if I can as it really helps with the extra cost :)

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  35. I save through the year, but I wouldn't say it was specifically for Christmas.

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  36. I start in the January sales and put things away all year.

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  37. Lots of lists and start buying early

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  38. I don't....but goodness me, I should!! Every year Xmas sneaks up on me so quick and I'm not organised

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  39. We buy a little bit extra with our weekly shop so its not one big lump nearer the time. I also buy a lot in the sales so I'm not panic buying closer the time.

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  40. Have a long life item each week and put it in a box, it all helps when you get to December

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  41. I save all of my spare copper + silvers in a tin the whole year

    Katie Corr

    X

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  42. I save a little bit each month to pit towards presents.

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  43. set a budget for presents and save that amount

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  44. I like to make cards, biscuits as gifts etc. As well as saving money on gifts, it shows you've really made an effort

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  45. I buy in the january sales and sales throughout the year for Christmas.

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  46. I buy throughout the year and in sales.

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  47. save abit extra each month for Christmas

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  48. I save as many vouchers as I can all for christmas :)

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  49. I try to save some each month to go towards christmas

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  50. I buy throughout the year and check out sales so that it is all spread out

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  51. I don't but I only spend what I can afford x

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  52. if you don't really need it - don't buy it!

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  53. I always look around for the best price and I buy things when they come down in price or on offer.

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  54. I like to shop online and do price comparison's on everything, from groceries to gifts etc.

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  55. i make lists and plan, i also search saving websites and shop sales for bargains through the year

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  56. I save my coins through the year, it really adds up

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  57. I make lots of lists, always shop around for best prices and save up my supermarket points to pay for the big Christmas shop!

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  58. Im trying to but on my necessary things and not get carried away when shopping.

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  59. i save up through the year, then buy a few bits at a time to spread the cost

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  60. I buy Christmas presents early and always write a shopping list before I go shopping and stick to it.

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  61. We save vouchers and start shopping early when shops like argos have the 3 for 2 on toys x

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  62. I save 50p coins in a jar. It's amazing how they build up to a respectable amount over the year.

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  63. Be organised. Buy throughout the year so the cost is spread and you take advantage of sales and if you can't afford it don't buy it. Save your nectar points etc

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  64. I save all my change in a pot and save all my supermarket points

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  65. I try to buy throughout the year rather than last minute

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  66. I try and buy things over a few months so the expense does not come all at once.

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  67. I try to put a little bit away all year round

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  68. Lovely photos ��

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  69. I buy as I go and the kids keep a spreadsheet of chores and money gifted if they want a big present

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  70. I start planning and buying presents from September

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  71. I have an app on my phone. I allocate everyone a price I'd like to spend and then when I buy gifts record how much. The app tells me how much under or over budget I am overall. Usually over but not by much.

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  72. Put a bit of money up when I can and then look for any offers on what I need.

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  73. I try to spread the cost by buying presents over several months. I always have a list I work with, that I start making in the summer (!), and wait for offers on the goods I want.

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  74. Start buying presents in September after the kids go back to school

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  75. Start buying bits and pieces in the sales earlier in the year

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  76. I save up throughout the year £20 a month

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  77. I have a budget for each person and stick to it!

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  78. We buy through the year not such a big shock then

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  79. Put a small amount of money away each month. Have a budget for presents and one for food and make sure I stick to it.

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  80. I try and buy bits throughout the year!

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  81. I put money aside every month throughout the year and pick up gifts in the sales etc when I can. I also buy things like decorations in the January sales!

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  82. I wing it and to be honest it's not working

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  83. I use a xmas organizer app! It is amazing and Im not sure how I survived before it

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  84. I keep hold of my Tescos reward vouchers all year & also stick a couple of pounds a week in their savings stamp machine. Last year, my fresh food shopping (the big one!) which was around £140 at the checkout, cost me a grand total of £9

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  85. I usually buy even few months before. I look for cheaper prices.

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  86. I save with vouchers to buy most gifts but also look for bargains in the sales throughout the year

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  87. I save up money in my paypal from selling bits on ebay.

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  88. For the last 2 years I have but a small amount £30 to £40 into a voucher saving club which has meant that I do not have to pull out as much in December. I also try to buy small gifts/presents throughout the year and store them in a safe place especially when things are on sale.

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  89. We just put in extra to the joint account to cover it.

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  90. By remembering to breathe! And mulled wine helps me along

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  91. We put a little aside into a special savings account each month - although it didn't quite cover our spend this Xmas! :)

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  92. We put alot more hours than usual in to work, make the extra funds, we follow their list, then get carried away, stop spending, notice that one of them does not seem to have many so then buy more, until we look at the bank balance and think Whoops, thats how we budget :-S

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  93. Use as cashback credit card and cashback sites and then cash out in December

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  94. I look for specials using points I've collected.

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  95. We dont spend much on christmas as we all like to go on lots of short holidays each year.

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  96. I don't budget but I don't overspend either

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  97. We put money away every month and I complete surveys which give us vouchers to spend.

    Linda Ford

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  98. I don't usually budget but I normally have a set amount I'll spend on people

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  99. I buy presents really early (August sales), do regifting, or do a day out shopping in the January sales for the little 'un.

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  100. I cut back on the day to day things in the weeks running up to Christmas so have a bit extra in December

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  101. I try to save a little each month and buy bargains in the sales

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  102. As soon as Christmas groceries come into the shops I buy one extra item per week. It saves a major payout in one go just before Christmas week.

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  103. By buying lots in sales through the year

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  104. save vouchers throughout the year

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  105. I save monthly throughout the year and start buying bits and bobs in September.

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  106. I buy things in the sales throughout the year. Also I have a Christmas cupboard that I add to through November and December. Things like wine, mixers, Chocolates. A wee thing each week soon ads up.

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  107. I make a list of what needs to be done and cross each thing off as I complete it.

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  108. I don't - I always overspend and have the tightest January and February

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  109. i buy a little something each month of the year to put away x

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  110. I have a Christmas saver scheme with my employer where I pay so much from my weekly paycheque into a savings pot which I get once a year for christmas

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  111. I don't really budget I just buy things as and when I have money

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  112. I buy in the sales at the start of the year

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  113. We try to buy throughout the year, and then put extra into our budget in November and December for Christmas

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  114. Start shopping in the January sales! (@PeanutHog)

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  115. I just put some money on side every single week.XXX

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  116. I start buying bits and bobs a few months before and try and get a bit of overtime in at work

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  117. I have standing orders set up to save

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  118. Do some selling on eBay before the Christmas period

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