An Old Fashioned Christmas | More With Less

shoestring-budgetToday we're going to talk about the "B" word. Before our family created and began living by a budget, I had the idea that doing so would be restrictive, boring, that it would steal all my joy and I'd never be able to do anything or go anywhere.

I couldn't have been more wrong. I like how John Maxwell put it:

"A budget is telling your money where to go instead of wondering where it went."

Well said, Mr. Maxwell, well said.

It may sound old fashioned, but the idea of boundaries and self-imposed restrictions is one of the best ways to get focused on personal goals and encourage vigilance in seeing them into reality. It is responsible, and instead of chasing all our fun away, it ends up enhancing our lives over and over and over again.

overspendingApplying this principle to our Christmas spending works the same way. I know lots of people who live by a budget all year long, but when it comes to Christmas, all bets are off. It doesn't have to be that way in order to bless those we love. And, it doesn't have to mean going without as much as planning for what we want.

So, to complement our household budget (help here if you need it), we consider what we typically spend at Christmas time. We include the gifts we purchase, the decorations, the food, the parties, and add it all up. Divide by 12 and then see if we can find a place for that amount in our monthly budget. Then, when Christmas season rolls around, we can let go of any repressed guilt for "spending so much"! And, that feels good.

This is one old fashioned idea that deserves to find its place again in every day life.


Photo courtesy:  Shoestring, Shopper

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