This episode has a very special guest. My mom!
I really wanted to have my mom on this episode after recording a FaceBook live about Prime Day.
In the video, I explained how I was trying to start planning for Christmas and my son’s birthday even though it was in the middle of July.
After recording the video I was thinking about the perfect person to talk about Christmas planning and savings is my mom.
I started paying attention to my mom after I had my first son and notice how she was always done Christmas shopping months before Christmas.
She always looked at ease and apart of me secretly envied her because I was always stressed and waiting until minute to buy Christmas gifts.
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Prep for Christmas with a Special Savings Account
My mom explains that she starts planning for Christmas the year before. She has a Christmas club account with her credit union.
She has a specified amount transferred into the account every month. The money saved in this account is for major gifts.
The beauty of the Christmas club account, or a short-term CD account, is you can put money in, but you can not take money out.
You specify the date that you want the money released. This makes saving easy and prevents you from taking money out and spending.
Then in October, but no later than November, my mom sets up the money in the Christmas club account to be released into her savings account for her to make those big purchases.
Make a List
She starts by making a list of everyone that she wants to buy gifts for.
She will estimate how much she wants to spend on each person to develop a budget so that she knows exactly how much she needs to save in the Christmas account. She has this list made by April.
She buys presents throughout the year, but in particular, in July there are many sales on toys that she takes advantage of. There is also Christmas in July sales can be equivalent to Black Friday sales.
Ways to Save Now
So you may be reading this and feel like you don’t have that much time to save. The good news is there are ways that you can save some cash to use towards buying Christmas presents now.
Shop for around for car insurance
Every year check to see if you are getting the best rates for car insurance by shopping around. You can save some major cash that can be used towards Christmas presents easily.
Cartwheel by Target
My mom loves Target. There is an app called Cartwheel that can help you save money with coupons without having to actually clip coupons.
You search through the items that have the coupons and add them to your cart. You can add up to ten items. When you are ready to check out, open up the app and the cashier will scan your barcode and the coupons will apply.
Target also has some really great deals that you should look out for. You can earn gift cards. For insistence, if you by 3 sales items you can get a $5 gift card. Then you can use the gift cards for buying Christmas gifts.
This is one of my mom’s favorite was to buy presents. There have been several times I that I have visited her and found a stack of Target gift cards that she has earned through the process.
If you have clothes that are in good condition or even have tags on them, you should consider selling that at a consignment store to get some cash.
ThredUp is an online consignment store that you can sell your unused items online and either get cash or exchange for new clothes.
I have bought a few items on the site. I am also in the process of selling a few items as well to add to my Christmas account.
Use this link to get $10 to shop at Thred Up!
Take advantage of any neighborhood garage sales. Or have your own garage sale to sell any unwanted items.
Other ways to save that we did not mention in this episode:
- Cut out Starbucks runs and make your own coffee.
- Pack your lunch instead of eating out for lunch.
- Search for coupons before checking out on an online order. Honey is one of my favorite and easiest ways to save on online purchases.
- Make a budget and stick to it.
When you are ready to buy gifts remember these helpful tips:
- Buy discounted gift cards. There are some stores that will sell $100 worth of gift cards for $80.
- Follow your favorite stores on social media. Some companies will offer special discount codes for followers on social media
- Get cash back with Ebates. You can shop your favorite stores and get cash back when using Ebates.
- Search for discount codes. Use sites like RetailMeNot and Honey to look for discount codes when shopping online.
I had to ask my mom a few fun questions before she signed off.
The first question: So what is making my mom happy right now?
“Being an empty nester.” My mom has no more kids in her house and she has been spending her days renovating her house and traveling.
“I can do what I want, what I want and not worry about my kids because I was passionate about trying to be a good mom for my kids. I hope I did a good job. So, if I can’t take them where I’m going, I’m not going anywhere. But now that they are on their own doing well, I am so proud of them, I can really focus on travel. I’m just doing fun stuff with my husband. So, you know, I’m enjoying life”
What superpower would my mom want to have?
To be able to see the winning lottery numbers! LOL. She really caught me off guard with this answer!
In this episode, I mentioned my sister’s beautiful wedding that my mother did all of the decor. You can check out those pictures here: