It’s that time of year…. little peeks of the Christmas season are coming into view. The stores, advertisements, Facebook….all telling us to get ready. Ready for gift shopping, party shopping, decorating shopping…
The last couple of years we have done the cash envelope system for our spending. It has really helped us save and not go overboard in the spending department. The number one thing that helped me save on money and sanity was having my list and money in one spot. I never have to wonder what I have already bought, did I over do one kid over the other in the gifts department and what was that gadget that mom wanted?! Everything- money, people, gift ideas and how much I have left to spend is all right here….in one spot. I also put aside a certain amount of money on our debit card just for online purchases because I do tend to search for the best deal and usually find those online.
We have cut down on the family gift giving the past couple of years. Both my husband and I come from larger families and it gets to be expensive buying everyone little gifts. The past few years we have just had the kiddos draw names and then we get the “parent/grandparent” gifts, along with all the adults drawing one name.
Now, on to my organizer I use.
I first make a list of all the people that we will be giving gifts to. We usually have parents, names drawn for the kiddos and the one adult, teachers, bus driver, neighbors, a few close friends. I also put on the list food, decor and travel.
I use a small notebook and a zipper pouch for my system.
In the notebook I have one page for each person. On that page I write the person’s name, the total amount we are spending on that person and the wants and needs of the person. I then cross off when I buy an item and write the amount of money remaining if there is any.
In my zipper pouch, I labeled each tab divider with the person’s name and put in the amount of money that we will spend on the person and spend until it’s gone:)
You can use any zipper pouch. The one I have used is an older one by Thirty-one Gifts. (if you need a consultant let me know, otherwise you can go directly to the site and they will assign one to you).
When making the zipper pouch system measure first cut out dividers and tabs for as many categories as you need. Making your own lets you customize how many dividers you need. My pouch just happen to be the size of some leftover photo mating from my scrapbooking days-score-no measuring needed! I also used a tab punch, which can be found at any craft store or Amazon. I have used these dividers for the past couple of years and just take off the tabs and replace.
You can also skip all of this and purchase an already made divided plastic envelope from any office store or I have even seen them in the Dollar spot at Target also.
Finally, put in your notebook and a pen…don’t forget a pen! Oh and the money!!
Drop it into your purse and you are ready to go.
Everything in one place.