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Old 09-27-2012, 08:39 AM   #1
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Christmas Gift Budget....What's yours?

Its that time of year again! Do you have a set budget PER child? Is it $100? $500? $1,000? Unlimited? Do you spend the same amount on each child/same # of gifts or is it quality vs quantity? I realize age will have an effect on the answers. I have 2 in college and 1 in HS - in the past it's been about $500 (at least thats what I tell DH) each but of course I would go over that with the "filler" presents or last minute requests LOL. I try to keep it even but my kids are old enough to understand quantity vs quality so I don't really worry about that.

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Old 09-27-2012, 09:25 AM   #2
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We have 4...10,9,9,7. We try very hard to keep it even. This year the kids wanted to go to Disney more than they wanted "stuff." We have still budgeted about $250 a piece for them for Disney related clothing gifts, and gift cards for their stocking. I'm having a really hard time not purchasing this year, but I know we are giving them what they truly want. Most of the prior year purchases get tossed aside within a few hours, so we feel like memories are a greater gift. We hope to make this a tradition!
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Old 09-27-2012, 09:26 AM   #3
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Our boys are so close in age (5&6) that we try and keep it about the same across the board. We try to give about the same number at the same cost. At lot of times, they will get similar gifts with their own variations.

Our DD (12) is plenty old enough to know she's her gifts cost more and she's always thankful for whatever she gets.

Now with our family, we try to keep it as simple as possible. We do small gifts for each other. We always host X-mas at our house, and we have a set $15 limit for gifts to and from eachother.

$15 is enough to get something small and appreciative, and not break the bank. Family meaning, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. As far as our own parents, our kids give their g-parents the $15 gifts and then DH and I each get our moms a lil nicer gift too.
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Old 09-27-2012, 09:34 AM   #4
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We spend about 250.00 per child. I shop for deals and start early so it is more about spending a similar amount versus having the same amount of presents. Also they are spread out in age so they are into different things.
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Old 09-27-2012, 09:43 AM   #5
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I like to keep it even. I do not track how much I spend but I am a savvy shopper. I start stocking up whenever I see a good deal or if it is a hard to find item. I do go overboard but definately not $1000 per kid. More like $500 each for DH and DS. Retail value of that $1000 is probably around $3000 though. And that is why jaws drop when they see what my kids get for Christmas Everyone just assumes and criticizes that I overspend but if they were to see my receipts, they would know I am just that good!
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:05 AM   #6
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Smile

Our budgets have always been based on our finances for the year, and they fluctuate.
One year we had a layoff and the kids got a hat and gloves and one dvd, and they were teenagers (14 and 17) then.
We were thankful to have heating oil and food and a roof over our heads.

We are both fully employed now, though not in possession of a money tree, so we still don't go crazy at Christmas. We never have.
We never spend more than $250 - 300 total.
We still have to buy oil for the furnace (at more than $4 a gallon) and property taxes are due in December too.
We usually do one larger gift (DS got a really nice pair of dress shoes- they require business attire at college for classes- which he loved) and a few smaller gifts.
He seems to really like gift cards too, so he can do his own clothes shopping.
DD and DSiL get gift cards.
DH and I buy small gifts for one another, we really have everything we could really want, and we get something thoughtful for our parents- something they can use and will appreciate (got Mom a supportive lightweight folding director's chair for sitting in on the beach or other outdoor events they go to through the year- her hip and knee replacements and arthritis make most folding camp chairs impossible for her to use.)

None of us own an ipad or kindle, we don't pay for cable or satellite or smart phones.
We work to keep our bills low... and these items often incur a monthly or yearly subscription cost,
so we steer clear of things that create new bills to pay...

We have bought $5 McDonald's cards for our nieces and nephews in the past and we will probably keep doing that even though it is beginning to really add up. We have over 20 kids (and growing) in our extended family and that is our largest single Christmas cost.
But we are a few hours away and can't get to all their birthdays, and to be truthful,
at the last birthday party we attended for a niece, they did not open gifts at the party at all,
they waited for all the guests to leave before opening them,
and nobody even said "thank you" so we will probably not be worrying about birthdays anymore and sticking to Christmas.

The older I get the more intangible things have greater value to me.
Last year when DS asked me what I wanted for Christmas, I told him I really wanted to make a special family recipe (Norwegian lefse) together in the kitchen.
It was a recipe my ggg grandmother made with her kids, and passed down through the generations, but we are the only family in my extended family that still makes it together.
None of my cousins do.
And I have the pictures with DS rolling out and making it.
This year for Thanksgiving he and I are taking some extra time off to go early to the grandparents and make this recipe with Gramma.
That will make her year and is my present from him again.
(Hey it's a lot to ask of a college junior to take his break time and commit to give it all to the family... he is a very special guy )
Time together making good memories and carrying on family traditions is the best present ever...
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:09 AM   #7
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I only have one child, and we never specify a set amount to spend.
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:13 AM   #8
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I want to join your family! You all sound like you know the true meaning of Christmas and family! Amazing and God bless!


Quote:
Originally Posted by goodfood4ursoul View Post
Our budgets have always been based on our finances for the year, and they fluctuate.
One year we had a layoff and the kids got a hat and gloves and one dvd, and they were teenagers (14 and 17) then.
We were thankful to have heating oil and food and a roof over our heads.

We are both fully employed now, though not in possession of a money tree, so we still don't go crazy at Christmas. We never have.
We never spend more than $250 - 300 total.
We still have to buy oil for the furnace (at more than $4 a gallon) and property taxes are due in December too.
We usually do one larger gift (DS got a really nice pair of dress shoes- they require business attire at college for classes- which he loved) and a few smaller gifts.
He seems to really like gift cards too, so he can do his own clothes shopping.
DD and DSiL get gift cards.
DH and I buy small gifts for one another, we really have everything we could really want, and we get something thoughtful for our parents- something they can use and will appreciate (got Mom a supportive lightweight folding director's chair for sitting in on the beach or other outdoor events they go to through the year- her hip and knee replacements and arthritis make most folding camp chairs impossible for her to use.)

None of us own an ipad or kindle, we don't pay for cable or satellite or smart phones.
We work to keep our bills low... and these items often incur a monthly or yearly subscription cost,
so we steer clear of things that create new bills to pay...

We have bought $5 McDonald's cards for our nieces and nephews in the past and we will probably keep doing that even though it is beginning to really add up. We have over 20 kids (and growing) in our extended family and that is our largest single Christmas cost.
But we are a few hours away and can't get to all their birthdays, and to be truthful,
at the last birthday party we attended for a niece, they did not open gifts at the party at all,
they waited for all the guests to leave before opening them,
and nobody even said "thank you" so we will probably not be worrying about birthdays anymore and sticking to Christmas.

The older I get the more intangible things have greater value to me.
Last year when DS asked me what I wanted for Christmas, I told him I really wanted to make a special family recipe (Norwegian lefse) together in the kitchen.
It was a recipe my ggg grandmother made with her kids, and passed down through the generations, but we are the only family in my extended family that still makes it together.
None of my cousins do.
And I have the pictures with DS rolling out and making it.
This year for Thanksgiving he and I are taking some extra time off to go early to the grandparents and make this recipe with Gramma.
That will make her year and is my present from him again.
(Hey it's a lot to ask of a college junior to take his break time and commit to give it all to the family... he is a very special guy )
Time together making good memories and carrying on family traditions is the best present ever...
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:19 AM   #9
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Every year I see people talk about how they do a trip instead of all kinds of presents. This is the first year that neither of my kids believe in Santa anymore and I LOVE the trip idea so I really tried to sell it. Nope. They both prefer Christmas at home. If we went away they would still have a great time, but when you combine the fact that they'd rather a traditional Christmas at home with the fact that going to Disney over the holidays means massive crowds I couldn't justify it.
Maybe a few more years and we'll do a cruise or something instead.

We probably average about 500 per kid. One big gift and several smaller items.
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:39 AM   #10
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We only have one child, but we still try to keep it between $200-$25. Honestly, she has so much already so it is often difficult to come up with things to get for her. We also always do a Winter trip in addition to gifts.
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Old 09-27-2012, 10:47 AM   #11
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I don't have a budget but I do have a number, which was the number of gifts my parents used to give me. I give each child 8 gifts to keep it equal, and usually one of those gifts is big, in the $100-range. The others are small. It usually rounds out to being about $250-$300 a kid. All in all, I try to stay under $1000 for Christmas, for all gifts (including those for family, teachers, etc).
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:04 AM   #12
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I have 1 child who will be 2 this Christmas. His birthday is 2 weeks before Christmas, so we have lots of gifts to get in a short period of time. I have most of his Christmas/Birthday gifts already and spend $100 by buying these through a co-op. He is also getting a WDW trip right before his birthday. DH & I have always been much more about experiences than traditional gifts, so we will keep this up with DS.
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:16 AM   #13
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I would love to do the trip idea with dd's, but they both still believe in Santa, so that'll be on hold for at least a couple years,

As far as my budget goes, I fluctuate year to year, but on average it's usually around $300 per child. Their birthdays fall within 3 weeks of Christmas as well though, so total birthday/christmas budget for the month of December runs more like $400-$450 per dd.

I try to stick around the same # of presents since we always alternate opening gifts so everybody can relax and see what the others got... but cash amount can be off depending on what deals I got.

For example, this year they're getting 7 presents each, and younger dd's totals about $430.. older dd's totals about $360... I might pick up a couple very small gifts between now and then, but for the most part, I'm done.


Younger dd birthday:

Camera - $120 (bought used off ebay but looks brand new in box)


Younger dd Christmas:

4th generation Touch - $175 (haven't bought it yet, waiting to see if any better offers)

Lenses for camera - wide angle and telephoto - $80.

Camera bag - Free - my dad gave me a new one he doesn't want, will wrap that for her.

Charm necklace that she's been really wanting - $30

Headlight for her bike, old one broke over summer - $20

Hex bug set she's been begging for - $10 (found on clearance at walmart)


Older dd birthday:

Phone - pay as you go with $100 airtime card & 1 year of service, got a $70 phone for free - $100

Older dd Christmas:

New bicycle - still researching this one, but plan on spending around $150.

Covers for her phone - got 3 of them for $15 off Amazon

Headlight for her new bike - $30

Bell for her new bike - $10

Bean bag chair off walmart.com - $40

Appfishing toy for her Touch at Sam's club - $15
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:17 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DisneyFansInLINY View Post
I want to join your family! You all sound like you know the true meaning of Christmas and family! Amazing and God bless!
God is SO GOOD, and He has never let us down!
God bless you too!
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Old 09-27-2012, 11:31 AM   #15
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We are having our first child due in May 2013, and i'm sure my husband and I will probably go crazy buying the baby gifts at christmas even before it's born, lol. So no budget for the baby this year

But there is a budget for the adults in our family. Between being pregnant and waiting to close on our house we are strapped for cash. So adults will be $10-15 each and no more!!
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