5 Tips to Start Saving for the Holidays Now

A blog about making the most of the holiday season by being financially prepared.

While the holiday season should be a time of excitement and fun, for many it can turn into a source of contention. Anxiety surrounding holiday spending can put a real damper on your holiday festivities. So if you want to help your family be financially prepared this holiday season then start small and start early. These five easy tips will help you to start saving for the holidays right now, so you don’t puke when you open your credit card bill in January!

  1. Start thinking about a realistic budget WITHOUT using credit so it doesn’t follow you into the next year: Once you have some ideas of the gifts and activities you want to do this holiday season, start putting a simple budget around each item. It’s easy to get carried away, so do it before the emotions of the holiday season kick in, and you can make better financial decisions.
  2. Get your lists early:  Asking your family for their Christmas lists early can help you to get a head start. Find out what people want now, so you have time to shop around for the best price. You can even buy these items early when you find them on sale, or you can at least more easily space out your spending. Knowing what you’re buying in advance will help you to budget, and get a better snapshot of what you need to prepare for. Also, don’t get swept up in thinking you have to get everything someone else wants or puts on their list (especially children). Share those ideas with grandparents or others who want to get them a gift as well. 
  3. Shop during the pre-holiday sales: Stores are always having great sales around this time of year. Don’t wait until the madness of Black Friday or Cyber Monday hits to get a good deal. Shop the early sales now and get a great deal instead! 
  4. Buy a gift or two each paycheck: To take the burden off of your December paychecks, start buying a gift or two each week or every paycheck, starting now. This way you can spread out your spending, and you won’t have to charge it and pay it off later. 
  5. Start making holiday gift idea lists now: A little planning goes a long way. Instead of running around like a mad person in December buying anything you can get your hands on, start making your list now so you can plan and prepare. When we wait until the eleventh hour to shop for gifts,  our budget can go entirely out the window because we have no idea what to shop for. 
  6. Start thinking about a realistic budget: Once you have some ideas of the gifts and activities you want to do this holiday season, start putting a simple budget around each item. It’s easy to get carried away, so do it before the emotions of the holiday season kick in, and you can make better financial decisions.

Holiday shopping and spending doesn’t have to be stressful. With a little preparation, you can enjoy what the holiday season is really all about. 

Still feeling overwhelmed about your holiday budget? Check out my Planning For Peace This Holiday Season e-book. 

7 Simple Things You Can Do To Reset Your Finances This Fall

As we step into Fall, it feels like a reset of our lives and goals, personally and financially. It is almost a mini New Year’s!

A lot of us feel excited about the seasons ahead, and look to set new goals to make the rest of the year the best it can be. 

Making smart financial goals this Fall can help you to truly be successful in the months and years ahead. Check out my list below of seven simple things you can do to reset your finances this Fall.

7 Simple Things You Can Do To Reset Your Finances This Fall: 

  1. Start outlining your Fall and holiday spending now: Being proactive versus reactive is vitally important in terms of resetting your financial forecast. Whether through a spreadsheet, a whiteboard, or whatever other method feels right for you, having a clear financial picture will help to set you up for success moving forward. Planning ahead financially for Fall and holiday spending can provide you more wiggle room, so you’re not pinching pennies or struggling to catch up later.  
  2. Start saving for the holidays now: According to Investopedia, the average American spent $998 on gifts, holiday items, and other expenses last holiday season. Holiday spending seems to steadily increase every year, and the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in prices going way up due to shortages and shipping delays. If you haven’t started putting away money for holiday expenditures, you should start now. 
  3. Start working on your 2022 budget: My favorite b-word is budget! Setting a budget helps you to limit your spending, allowing you to reach your financial goals. If you’re struggling to figure out a budget on your own, meet with me to prepare your next year’s spending plan.
  4. Reassess your current spending plan: The end of the year tends to really drain us financially, so ask yourself if there is anything you can cut back on now so that you have a little extra cushion.
  5. Curb any bad habits: Things like daily coffees and eating out tend to creep in during the summer months, so take the time now to reset any bad habits you may have picked up. 
  6. Reconnect with your money: Your prosperity is what gives you the freedom to live the lifestyle you want to. Financial stress can lead us to disconnect from the energy that is currency. Working on your relationship with your money can allow you to usher in more of it.
  7. Be thankful: Showing gratitude for the money you do have and for all that you get to do because of it, is such an important practice. Oftentimes we fall into a place of lack or poverty mentality due to current or past money issues, and it can push us into an ugly cycle that can be difficult to break. Some of this comes from the way we were raised, and our parents’ relationships and attitudes toward money. Try to adjust any negative feelings you may have toward your finances this Fall, and you will see money begin to flow more freely. 



Now is the perfect time to reset your financial story and adjust so you are prepared for the rest of the year and into the next! 

If you are seeking financial freedom and would benefit from financial coaching services, let’s schedule some time together by phone or video conference. This will allow us to get to know each other a bit, and to see if we are a good fit to work together. I’ll learn about your struggles and goals, and you’ll learn about my financial coaching program. You can schedule your 45 Minute Initial Discovery Session right now at https://pennywisecoaching.com/contact-pennywise-coaching/.

7 Ways To Save On Your Vacation

We are all in desperate need of a vacation (while saving where we can) as we transition back to “normal life.”. These last 18 months have been hard and all of us deserve some time to calm down and enjoy life. 

But how do you vacation without blowing your budget out of the water? Well, here are seven tips to help you get away while still being mindful about your money.

 

7 Ways To Get Away On A Budget and Save on Your Vacation:

 

  • Online Marketplaces: Websites like Groupon and Living Social offer up amazing travel and tour deals. Whether you’re sticking close to home or exploring somewhere new, these sites offer great prices on travel, dining, and entertainment.
  • Last-Minute Deals: If you have the flexibility to book a last-minute trip, that’s typically when you can find the best savings. Signing up for alerts on websites like Hopper, Cheap Tickets and Travelocity can help you to score big on a budget.
  • Season Passes: Season passes are available for anything from state parks to amusement parks, and can make for great day trips on the cheap. What’s available in your area that can make you feel like you’re on vacation?
  • Coupons: Every tourist destination offers coupons and deals on local attractions. You can also look for online coupons and coupons on various travel websites in order to cut costs.
  • Eating In: Vacationing somewhere with a kitchenette or complimentary breakfast can help you to keep costs down. Many newer hotels offer these options to their guests, while websites like Airbnb can help you to land a house or apartment that will make you feel at home.
  • Package Deals: Many travel websites offer package deals on airfare and accommodations, and some of them even include other perks like meals or transportation. Booking tours on your trip can be another great way to get more bang for your buck.
  • Be Flexible: Whether on the dates or the destination, flexibility can give you the freedom  to vacation on a budget. Be open-minded and maybe consider checking out a sister city for half the price. 

 

Remember being financially free means having the money you need to live the life you want. Saving on your next getaway helps maintain your lifestyle while being mindful of your finances. 

 

 If you need help creating what that framework looks like for your life, then contact me for your virtual session. Schedule your time with me online.


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