Instead of starting my morning with Saturday cartoons, I began my day cackling at the most relatable Christmas video ever. Besides the headache recurrences, this character is me – only my go-to is Hobby Lobby, not Target. After seeing the snippets of Target décor in the background, I wouldn’t be surprised if that changed this year. (If you have extra time today, you must check this video out!)
After finishing this video for the fourth time in twenty-minutes, it dawned on me
Christmas is in 124 days, and I am thoroughly underprepared!
That was it: I jumped out of bed, threw on my Hallmark movie sweatshirt, added peppermint syrup to my almond milk latte, and danced like a hip eighty-year-old to “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” by Tyler the Creator.
Friends, it’s time to get holly and jolly up in here!
If you don’t know me very well, you may think that I am being sarcastic. That is simply not the case. Christmas spirit makes up about 83% of my personality. Being Santa Claus would be my dream job – don’t get me wrong, Mrs. Claus is vital to North Pole operations, but I like being the head honcho with cute cheeks. (Face cheeks from the cold weather, and other cheeks from all the sugar cookies.)
Now the question is: could I be Santa Claus?
The answer is: of course!
For starters, Dawson once complimented me and told me that my nose makes me look like a Who. Isn’t the resemblance uncanny? Sarcasm aside, I can see it a bit in this selfie!
Let’s not forget the time I dressed up like a Christmas tree just because! Making that was a son of an itch! It would’ve been even cuter with the wrapping paper skirt, but that kept ripping. The sugar cookies get me every time – forever round and full of cookies.
Did I mention that I wear ornament earrings all December long? Well, they are actually just ornaments, but they work as earrings, too! Talk about versatile.
Oh, also, look at this adorable ornament headband paired with a DIY Christmas sweatshirt! I admit this look gives me Harper vibes from Wizards of Waverly Place.
And there is a time when two classmates, Allison and Madison, and I started the Christmas charity event, Garrett Claus.
I rest my case: I am the next Noelle Claus!
If there is anything I like as much as Christmas, it is not having debt. I refuse to pull out a credit card or go broke for Christmas. However, I also refuse to forgo the Hallmark wrapping paper and matching boxes, tissue paper, ribbon, and gift tags.
That is why I slowly buy Christmas gifts around August or September and am usually done in early December. Then, the wrapping parties commence!
Dawson and I combine all our money and do joint gifts. Last year, he asked how much money I thought I’d spent on all our gifts, then proceeded to throw out “like $500?”
$500 for twenty-two people, three Secret Santa’s, and the necessary Hallmark Christmas supplies? Had he just gotten back from Jupiter or?
Truthfully, Dawson and I are huge savers. It really is our goal to put a 5-10% down payment on a house within the next year. (Don’t worry – only he’s living in the house until we get married!) We started a savings account together when I was a senior in high school – I love planning…obviously! – but we have had to pull money out to avoid a student loan, put 10% down on a car, and pay for other things that pop up – that’s life!
However, Christmas is also Christmas! A time when you spend more money than you anticipate, regardless of how many Excel budget sheets you craft. That’s why I budget to the best of my abilities and start my shopping early.
If you are way richer than us, and probably are, you should still start early this year. COVID (aka Grinch on steroids) may hit again this fall, and stores will shut down. Just imagine the shipping if that happens. We will have to remember 2-day Amazon shipping in history books. Talk about a shipshow.
How to Prepare
It is time to draft your naughty and nice lists. Write down everyone that you are planning to shop for this year. Don’t forget to include White Elephants, Secret Santa’s, pet gifts, and stocking stuffers. If you’re like me, you probably love Christmas shopping so much that no one drops down to your naughty list. My brother, Chance, could intentionally hit me with his car, and I would probably still spend more money on him than he’d ever consider spending on anything other than bacon burgers and cheese curds.
Next, create an estimated budget of what you’d like to spend. Include the price of boxes, tissue paper, bags, tape, ribbon, and gift tags. If you want to take this step further, count how many paychecks you’ll earn by Christmas. Then, calculate how much money you should save or spend from each paycheck to hit your estimated budget.
Once you have a target budget in mind, begin deciding how much you’d like to spend on each person. Personally, I spend the most money on Dawson, followed by our parents, then siblings, then grandparents, and so on. Don’t forget to include the typical cost for Secret Santa’s, White Elephants, work and school events, etc.
All of this is fun, but now it’s time for the fifth most fun part!
(The first is giving the gift, the second is wrapping it, the third is buying it, and the fourth is comparing its actual cost to your estimate.)
It is time to write down gifts that you’d like to give. Think about items you’ve heard them mention wanting, products they like, gift cards to places they frequently visit or just ask them what they want!
Now that you have your shopping list, you can officially put on your Santa boots and avoid your credit card!
When you finish your Christmas shopping in early December this year and wonder,
So, like, now what?
Watch Bad Moms Christmas, take some notes, and do as Amy does: have fun. ‘Tis the season to have a good time!
Except don’t wrap like her. It’s horrifying!
Enjoy Christmas! I hope it’s on your mind all day today, and you’re happy about that – not a bad banana with a greasy, black peel about it consuming your thoughts!
Hey! Thanks for not being a Grinch and tuning in today! Make sure to give me feedback on what blogs you’re enjoying. This blog is more unprofessionally written with all the gif’s, sarcasm, and puns. If it is not your style, let me know, and I will stick to more professional ones. Thanks, friends!