Boo…It’s Christmas!!

By: Genna Jenkin
The Your Smart Money Moves Mom

Is this going to be another one of those blogs that laments the constant hurrying-up of the holidays at the expense of our wallets and our well-being? You betcha! However, I would like to examine the toll it takes on our psyche prior even to the actual purchases we feel pressured to make.

Without sounding too much like some new-agey guru I would like to encourage you all to live in the moment and in the process you will save money. Here we are heading towards the end of October. This is one of the most beautiful times of the year. The leaves are changing, the air is brisk and a multitude of fun outdoor activities abound. In years past this is when our family would head out to the local orchard to pick apples, pumpkins, take a hayride and grab some cider for mulling. Sadly, now that our children are older their sporting events, school projects and social lives have taken precedence over this seasonal outing. 

So after they all teased me for the sparse decorations, (three unadorned pumpkins on the front porch) I set out to get ready for Halloween albeit alone. This is when I had my epiphany. It was another glorious day as I walked around the garden center grounds and chose a few more pumpkins, a gorgeous mum and a not-too-scary witch to add to our porch. There were toddlers carefully choosing their perfect pumpkin, others sipping cider and then I turned a corner and saw it…Christmas trees, decorations and gifts, oh my! 

My mind started to race. Should I start going through the boxes of decorations to see if I need anything? Did I already buy ribbon last year on sale? Those dishtowels would make great hostess gifts, how many will I need this season? Do I have to buy teacher’s gifts or should I just do gift cards? As I edged toward a full-blown panic-attack I looked down at my cart and took a breath. Halloween is still over a week away and this is all I need now. The holidays will come as they always do and everything we need (and some things we don’t) will get purchased, but today there is no need to get ahead of myself. Instead when I went to pay for my merchandise I was pleasantly surprised to find that all Halloween items were already 30% off! So, let the retailers rush the holidays, but don’t let them rush you. Saving money and saving your sanity should go hand-in-hand.

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