Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Stress FREE Christmas shopping

I’ve mentioned before that a few years back I discovered Dave Ramsey.  His simplicity to personal finance was refreshing!  The baby steps work.   We manage to pay off all our consumer debt (except our mortgage and a small vehicle loan that I discussed here) and pay cash for everything now.


One thing I was able to implement into our weekly budget is a Christmas Fund

I know this nothing new and earth shattering as far as ideas go,  but actually doing it and sticking to it has changed my outlook on the holiday season.  I use to start a mild panic attack in September and with each passing day it would get stronger. (does any of this sound familiar?)

Here are my tips for a stress free holiday spending:

  • Start today! (tomorrow doesn’t work….TODAY…or you’ll forget, put it off, and you know where you will be come September! PANICING)
  • Decide on your budget. (Set down with anyone who shares the responsibility with you)
  • Divide your budget up into the number of weeks left to shop. (If you want to have all your holiday shopping done by the first week of December then subtract 4 weeks from 52 weeks out of the year.)
  • Automate your money to direct deposit.  (this KEY to making it work and sticking to it.  Trust me… you almost forget about the money drafted.)
  • Set up an account separate from your main savings and/or checking.  (Another KEY fact, I use a completely different bank for my long term saving.  That way I don’t see the money on a daily bases.)
  • Don’t touch the money for anything other than holiday gifts.

 I promise this will add such joy to your life!

I remember the first year that I got to go shopping stress-FREE…. the way I walled through the shops whistling holiday carols… I bet people thought I just won the lotto!  In some ways I felt like I did.

I use   ING Direct for my holiday savings/checking account.  I opened this account specifically for this reason alone (and even earned a bonus $25). I couldn’t be happier with this bank!  All direct deposits go into the savings and then when it’s time for me to make a holiday purchase, I just log on and transfer money to the debit card!

To access the ING DIRECT Orange Savings Account $25 offer click here or if that link is already used, please email me at oprootbb@gmail.com with "ING" in the subject line along with your first and last name, and I will forward you a referral within 24 hours.
Be sure to completely read over the terms and conditions prior to opening up the account.

Full Disclosure: I do receive $10 from ING for each referral made through me (up to 25 total)



  1. Oh a Christmas fund is such a good idea. I really want to make it a goal to do this in the coming year. Thanks for sharing these tips and thanks for the sweet compliments on my blog. You are too kind!

  2. Gotta love Dave! His plan does work! Glad to see you weren't stressed!

  3. This IS a great idea!!! We used to have CHRISTMAS CLUBS in the banks "YEARS AGO"... I had forgotten about it... This is a perfect way to reflect on Christmas how well you did in the previous year too... LOVE IT and Thank you...
    Happy New Year to you,

  4. OoooooKaaaaay! Im a DITZ! I JUST NOW saw that you have a Monday linky party??? And HOW LONG have we been blog buds? I have added your button to my blog and WILL link up next Monday! Duuhh!

  5. I am going to do that today! We have a savings account that we don't use and I am going to have automatic transfers set up to move Christmas funds there effective with our next paychecks!! Thanks for the motivation!

  6. Thanks for the tips. Can always use money management tips Ÿ

  7. We have been working on paying down debt and building up savings; I kept hearing about DR, and looked into him...turns out we were/are pretty much doing what he suggested! :-)

    Although, I do have to be better next year about a Christmas fund; I usually do that, but just forgot about it and didn't start saving this year until October, eeek! But I still managed to pay cash for Christmas, phew! (we don't have much to buy.) Still, next year I have to start earlier.


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Thanks ~Carrie

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