Just one month to go until Christmas!
That is all that’s left! How exciting!
Over the last few days of November, I will hopefully *fingers Crossed* get some of the posts that I’ve been meaning to catch up on, written and posted!
I guess that’s the down side of having the monthly look ahead, I start the month with a whole lot of optimism and ideas and as time goes by, I realise, I don’t have as much spare time as I first thought.
You’d think three years of Motherhood would have taught me something about spare time, but, apparently not!
At least I can let you all know that regardless of my recent bout of procrastination, I have managed to get a better grip of things and get stuff done! I mean, we really did shop until we dropped! (honestly, I think I am still recovering from that!)
KaboodleDad and I also got all of the Christmas stuff that we have bought so far and went through it all.
Well, I say WE but KaboodleDad found some Transformer toys we bought a few weeks back and abandoned me to play with them instead! I can’t complain, it meant I could crack on with organising my way without having to battle against his way.
He was better off playing with the Transformers, HAHA!
I’m just glad I managed to get something crossed off my List of Lists, really, getting organised is something I love doing and its nice to finally be back in the right frame of mind for it! I’ve still got quite a lot to do but a little bit each day means I’m getting it done, that’s all that matters!
Now, back in my Two month warning, I shared some Tips to have a stress free Christmas. I figured this time around, I’d share some ways to save a few pennies here and there, so here is my Kaboodle Money Saving Hints and Tips!
The photo above might look, to some, a bit excessive. But, that is what we have bought all together for Christmas, that’s not just Willows gifts, that’s everything we have bought so far, chucked into lots of different bags.
In all honesty though, we haven’t actually spent a large amount of money. We have managed to save money by being a little bit more savvy about our spending, like when I told you about our trip to Toys R Us being brought forward because we could get 20% off on those particular days.
It pays to shop around.
That’s my motto. I love finding things and googling them to see if I can get them cheaper elsewhere. Recently, I found an awesome toy for Willow, a build your own den set, it was £10 at TheWorks but before I decided to put it in my basket, I googled it and the results showed that the closest BYOD set I could find online would cost £35!
Obviously I picked the one from TheWorks!
I have also found that, at this time of the year, bigger shops sell things with huge price differences, especially if they’re THE TOY of the season. For instance, Willow wants an Elsa doll and a Bing doll for Christmas. Both of which are very popular this year and both of which cost around about £40 each! Those prices are massive, but, a quick search online showed me that one store was selling Bing a whole £10 cheaper than everywhere else, and another was selling the Elsa £10 cheaper than everywhere else! We actually decided against the Bing doll purely because I didn’t think the price tag was reasonable. What I did do, was pick up a different Bing toy and the Elsa doll when we went shopping to TRU and took advantage of the 20% off, okay, I didn’t save as much money but I saved some and got both cheaper than I would have had I bought them separately from different places.
The same thing can be said about just about anything.
I have been looking at some felt place mats for the table this year but with prices ranging from £3-£5 for each part, I was reluctant. On a recent shopping trip I actually found the exact same thing in my local pound shop, that saved me £11 on a set!
I can’t argue with that!
I normally leave my wrapping paper until last, that’s just how I’ve always done it, however, while we were out and about this weekend, I found the perfect wrapping paper to compliment our décor, I wouldn’t normally do such a thing but these rolls were 12 meters and only £2, the bonus was that they were also for sale on a 3 for 2. I paid £4 for 36 meters of wrapping paper! That’s awesome Value, and, the quality was there too. It wasn’t thin and flimsy, it’s the nice strong durable stuff but because it has a generic Santa design and nothing fancy, I got more for my money. Don’t get me wrong, there was wrapping paper there that was beautiful but £2 for 5 meters is practically extortion, so, thanks, but no thanks! I’ll stick to the nice and simple stuff and save myself a small fortune!
This idea can be used in pretty much any Christmas shopping; Crackers, Gift tags, Paper table cloths, Christmas cards… I’m basically saying, the stuff in Waitrose might look real pretty but if it’s going to get thrown in the bin, essentially you’re throwing money away. Just because it looks good and costs more, doesn’t necessarily mean the quality is any better, or at least that’s what I think. (£4 for 10 Christmas cards?? Please.)
Dig Deep Into The Sale Rails.
There will always be a sale somewhere at this time of year. Lots of shops have various different kinds of sales on at the same time. Yes, it saves time picking everything up from one place but, it could save you lots of money if you kept your ear to the floor for all the sales. I tend to find great bargains this way. There is no way of being particularly specific but if I take the recent 3 for 2 on wrapping paper deal I told you about; ASDA are selling 3 rolls of wrapping paper for £5 so for the sake of a £1 I could have just picked up three rolls at ASDA while I did my usual weekly shopping but, the rolls at ASDA are also only 5 meters each. I don’t know about you but I know I’d rather have almost double what I’d get from ASDA, £1 cheaper, just by going to a different shop.
Junk mail can all too often be a nuisance; credit card offers, foods menus to make you want to spend money you haven’t got on food that repeats on you for hours, glasses you don’t need and blinds you’d never even look at but, this time of year, junk mail often comes with some sort of voucher. For instance, we had the Toys R Us annual junk mail but it had a 20% off voucher attached, thanks!
Just today we received one for Smyths Toys, that had a 10% off voucher with it. I don’t think we’ll need it but it’s nice to have the option if we did.
I have also been receiving a lot of vouchers from the places I have loyalty cards with, some I probably wont use (here’s looking at you TESCO and your 25p off a bottle of orange juice!) Others I could (like the £3 off a £20 shop, TESCO.(That’s more like it))
Keep an eye on your inbox too. Every day I am getting offers of things sent direct to my email. From the places that I have signed up to other the years and also from places that I hold a royalty card with too. Lots of potential bargains, thank you very much.
There I said it. If you can get out and find some Black Friday bargains then good for you! It’s totally worth it.
Also, don’t forget Cyber Monday.
Lots and Lots of retailers send out their best online only bargains the Monday after Black Friday (30th of November)
I have actually been told that it pays to wake up in the early hours of the morning for this event because most people tend to go online when they wake up and I remember last year, I couldn’t get onto the Argos website from 9am right up until the very next day. The bargains were gone by then.
I can’t say I would get up in the early hours but if I still had a lot of stuff to get I’d consider it.
Lets not forget Amazon too, they might be Tax-Dodging (word I wont use)’s but they also have the best deals, let’s be honest. Amazon is the giant it is because, collectively, we’re all bargain hungers really. It give us what we want, for a price we don’t mind paying, that’s something we all need a bit of at this time in the year. Also, they’re big on the Black Friday/Cyber Monday thing which means even more savings!
Also, eBay, eBay can also save you lots of money too, but you knew that already!
Okay, so I’m pretty much done. The best advice I can really give you, is to stay grounded. It’s very easy to get Spend-Happy Syndrome and forget about the budget when there are so many bargains and deals flying around. Only take advantage of the deals if you actually do need the thing, NO BODY REALLY WANTS FOUR JARS OF PICKLED EGGS, EVEN IF THEY ARE BUY ONE GET ONE FREE FOR £1 – PUT. THEM. DOWN.
As always, Thanks for reading!
What about you? Do you have any money-saving Hints and Tips to share?