How much should you spend on holiday gifts?

Maegan Donajkowski ‘14
Photographer

 

Winter time brings many joys, such as the beautiful snow gently flying in the crisp air, the kindness that people display due to the holidays, and best of all, Christmas. Christmas can be a delightful, relaxing, and incredible holiday, but it can also be a very hectic and stressful time when it comes to finding the perfect gift for friends and loved ones. Gift-giving can be the most frustrating when money is tight, and let’s be honest, we’re in a recession. There are tons of ways to find the perfect gifts for loved ones and still maintain a budget.
When asked if she maintains a budget while Christmas shopping, Haley Holeton ’14 said, “Yes, I definitely use a budget when I Christmas shop. I try not to spend over $50 on a person, but it depends on who I am shopping for.”
It is especially tough for kids in high school who participate in extra-curricular activities and are unable to get a job to buy nice gifts for their families and friends.
When Tyler Churches ’14 was asked about his Christmas shopping budget, he responded, “Yeah, it is definitely tough to buy my family and friends gifts around Christmas time since I am in marching band, and I can’t have a job. I try to buy gifts that are on the cheaper side but also ones that have meaning to them.”
Some people choose to respect the holidays and realize what they are really about, which is performing acts of kindness and being genuinely nice to others.
When English teacher Kitty Reifert was asked about her holiday shopping plans, she said, “I definitely try to stick to a budget when I Christmas shop, but when it comes to buying for my granddaughter, I don’t have a budget. I will spend anything on her. Instead of my husband and me exchanging gifts, we just donate money to charity instead.”
There are also other ways to save a ton of money and still be able to give family and friends awesome gifts. Making a gift is a fantastic way to save money, and it is easier to personalize the present and make it more meaningful. One website with an abundance of cute and creative gift ideas is www.do-it-yourself-gifts.com. Making a blanket, or any gift for that matter, is a great way to show someone that they are loved.
Renee Jaworowski ’16 said, “I always make my own gifts for my family and friends. It saves me a lot of money, and it gives more feeling than going out and just buying someone a gift.”
Another great way to save money during the holidays is to agree with family members and friends on a set amount of money to spend on each other. That way no one has to worry about not spending as much money as the other person.
Setting up a budget for holiday shopping is one way to keep the frustration level down. Also, making gifts is a phenomenal way to show family and friends that time was spent on their gift and that they are important. It is also a great way to let the creativity flow and save a lot of cash while doing it. Whether one decides to spend a great deal of money on their gifts or make their own gifts, making memories will be loads of fun!