Christmas is on December 27th this Year

In case you haven’t heard, there has been a change in the calendar for Christmas Day. No longer celebrated on December 25th, as it has been traditionally. This year, Christmas falls on December 27th. News Year Eve will be celebrated on December 30th or on January 3rd. Is this for real? Yes. That is, it is for real for many people who decide to save money, into the hundreds of dollars by celebrating Christmas and New Years on days that most of us don’t. Celebrating the major holidays on off-days is a trend that has been embraced by more and … Continue reading

Bonding With the In-Laws: The Youngest Sibling

One of the weirdest things about marrying into a large family was that I’ve been around for almost the entire life of my littlest brother-in-law.  When Jon and I first started dating, and I met the family for the first time, his youngest brother was only a bit over a year old.  While he knows most of Jon’s other siblings very well, because they all lived at home with him for years (and some still do), Jon wasn’t around much when he was growing up.  So Jon, his own brother, isn’t really that much more of a presence in his … Continue reading

Did You Go Overboard with Gifts?

Now that the gift wrap is off and the gifts are spread around under the Christmas tree, there might be a sense that you went a little bit overboard. If it isn’t the sheer number of gifts, perhaps it is the credit card bill or the drain on your bank account that tells you that  you might have done a little too much. For me, it is usually the couple of extra gifts that I have left in the closet, too embarrassed or overwhelmed to bring them out. Ah, isn’t it so easy to be Santa these days. Still, it … Continue reading

Plenty of After Christmas Sales Today

Get out those gift cards and the Christmas money you got as a gift. The stores are ready to offer you plenty of after Christmas sales starting today. The strategy for this year for many families is to go out shopping today, the day after Christmas to pick up those gifts that they really wanted at bargain prices. Because they know that many people are heading to work today, the stores will be trying to do everything they can to get people to take an extra day off and go shopping. They want to get that last bit of sales … Continue reading

Three Gifts for Christmas

Three Gifts for Christmas Have you ever found an extra stash of Christmas gifts after Christmas? I’m embarrassed to admit that I have. Nestled in a corner of our bedroom closet was a bag of a couple of items that I had bought for Christmas and then completely forgot about. A growing tradition in many families takes its prompt from the three gifts that the wise men, or magi gave to the baby Jesus. Here is what the tradition of giving gifts the way that the wise men did, and how it can be very meaningful for your family, too. … Continue reading

Don’t Pay For Convenience

As chaotic as most parents’ lives are, it’s no wonder products such as bagged salad, pre-cut cantaloupe and rotisserie chicken are in high demand. Unfortunately, convenience often comes with a hefty price tag.  Think about how much you spend on items that make your life easier.  Even if you purchase four cheap bags of salad each week for an entire year, you’re looking at paying at least a few hundreds dollars.  You could save money by purchasing a head of lettuce, whole carrots and some celery, and then chopping them up yourself, but how do you put a price tag … Continue reading

Stay Merry This Christmas

 The holiday season is upon us, and if you are pregnant the mere thought of all of the shopping, cooking, cleaning, and everything else that you usually do for the holidays might leave you feeling exhausted. Fortunately, as with many things, the expectations that other people would place on you during the holiday season are likely to be far lower than those that you might set out for yourself. Here are a few tips for making the holiday season a little bit merrier and a little less stressful. First of all, make sure that your holiday schedule is realistic. Do … Continue reading

Why Smart Shopping Strategies Can Ruin Your Holiday Budget

It is usually the early bird that gets the worm, but when it comes to holiday shopping, the early bird may also get the bigger bills. People who shop the sales may also spend more than those who plan on buying items at full price. It sounds crazy, doesn’t it? But according to the American Research Group studying holiday spending, the average family who shopped early spent 14 percent more on gifts on average, and those who shopped the sales spent a whopping 53 percent more on average. what about online Yikes. Want another strange statistic? Those of us who … Continue reading

Making Christmas Simple

A simple Christmas can have wonderful meaning. Often, the less that we have, the more that we have to appreciate the wonder, the joy, and the glory of the season. This applies to both using up too much time and too much money. A couple of days ago, we picked up a few bags of bird seed from a discount store. That inexpensive purchase was one of the best ones we have had this season. It brought a number of colorful song birds right to our window. In the early morning hours, a hot cup of coffee and some time … Continue reading

Is Your Business Ready For Holiday Shoppers?

Today I began to wonder whether I had missed Thanksgiving. I went grocery shopping at my local grocery store after returning from a vacation, and everything is ready for Christmas. There are Christmas decorations on the store windows, Christmas displays on the shelves, and Christmas music too. I remember a time when stores used to decorate for Thanksgiving, but I saw no sign of that today. In fact, the only things that hinted that it is nearly Thanksgiving were the great prices on frozen turkeys and the end cap displays filled with stuffing mixes, canned pumpkin, and other Thanksgiving must … Continue reading