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How are you affording Christmas in this economy and do you have gift ideas for spouse and kids on very little money?

What to buy for Christmas when you have very little money, three kids (16, 13, and 1 and a half) barely paying bills, not much left if any for gifts.

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Asked by Anonymous at 1:46 PM on Dec. 11, 2009 in Money & Work

Answers (17)
  • Can ou go to a thrift store or get hand me downs from friends and clean them up? like get a cute shelf for one of you older children and paint it for their room. You can probably buy books at a thrift store and maybe a few cute clothes.

    Answer by ria7 at 1:50 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • I used the lay away method at Kmart. I did all my christmas shopping late october and have it all under the tree! I also get one thing every week for somebody. But I usually just get gifts for the kids and no one else. Plus, for extra money I sold everything I did not need, use or whatever was just laying around the house collecting dust and put it on craigslist. I made over $800.00 in three weeks just selling my old stuff and that money REALLY came in use for christmas spending money! Give it a try! You wont belive what people will!!!

    Answer by vdr1983 at 1:53 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • Well first adults really need gifts?? I think we can shop for ourselves. 16 is old enough to understand finances so talk to him/her about being frugal this year. I think old navy clothes are nice and affordable. Don't even worry about the 1 year old just having some pretty boxes to open is enough. Think wooden puzzles and hand me down toys.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:58 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • i joined snapfish to see one of my friend's pics and they sent me a coupon to make a free photo album..... it came out beautiful and cost $2 for the tax and shipping. i'm gonna give that to the baby..... she is 2 months and i made it about how we were waiting for her and her first 2 months, etc. i figured it will be a keepsake for her. but i should have given it to my hubby lol since he likes it so much. but alot of sites have incentives if u like to shop online.

    Answer by princessbeth79 at 1:58 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • Me and DF decided the only one we would buy for is our son, so we pulled money and spent a total of 40. We went to the thrift store, dollar store and got one big item from walmart. Of course we started buying the stuff back in August from the thrift store and dollar store

    Answer by Mom2Joseph2007 at 2:02 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • We went to Walmart for toys and dollar store for stocking stuffers. Thrift stores, churches, and other organizations may be able to assist you as well. With the economy the way it is, I think adults will understand if you can't get them anything. Spending time with them and letting them know how important they are to you is a wonderful gift in itself.

    Answer by nicolemstacy at 3:05 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • I have some items around the house that were collecting dust so I sold them on craigslist. i was fortunate enough to sell them within a day of posting them.

    Answer by motherwanting6 at 3:47 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • I start my Christmas shopping in like Sept. Dh laughs at me, but doing it a little bit at a time really does help. Also using lay away is a major life saver for the bigger purchases. maybe you can your Dh can work out something that you both want/need and just get that as a mutual christmas present. I got dh and I a game we both want for the Wii andthats all we are getting. My sister is doing the same for her family. Instead of buying everyone individual gifts she is getting one big "family" present (a Wii). And it might sound bad, but the 1 1/2 year old probably doesn't Christmas yet. They don't need big presents or anyhting really fancy. I would just get teh baby a few small toys and they will be perfectly happy. the other two are old enough to understand that christmas might not be great but you can still work with them on getting something affordable that they really want.

    Answer by jedwards2009 at 4:02 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • we limit ourselves to 10 per person....that includes parents and siblings nieces nephews ect. we have a one year old. we decided to give bathtime themed toys which shouldn't be to much. He doesn't have any and LOVES bath time so we thought it was a good toy. As for each other we are getting one big thing for both of us that won't be bought till somewhere between now and valentines day.....a mutual christmas/valentines gift....500 dollar flat screen from wal-mar....we are saving for it and have been for a while.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:44 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

  • We're only buying for our children this year. I might sound like Scrooge but adults can buy their own presents this year. I'll know next week how much I'll have to buy presents. I've got some little toys in mind for DS, the $10.00 aisle is going to help a lot. My daughter is less than one year old so I'm thinking a soft body doll with no buttons and some warm clothes for winter, Garanimals are pretty cheap at WalMart here.

    Answer by Anonymous at 6:08 PM on Dec. 11, 2009

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