With the festive season upon us most people are busy writing shopping lists for food and gifts. With that, there's also pressure on finances.
If you’re on a tight budget there’s no need to feel anxious and think you may have to forego the festivities. There are superb alternatives that could help you boost your festive budget.
Fortunately, since the pandemic of 2020, people are now more open to ideas about different and cheaper ways of doing things. Here are some ideas to help you get started.
Swap Roasted Peanuts for Roasted Seeds
Did you know that you can roast butternut seeds the same way you roast pumpkin seeds? In fact, you can roast most winter squash seeds such as acorn, butternut, spaghetti squash. Whatever you have on hand.
Despite some obvious surface differences in size and colour and even flavor, all winter squashes are actually variations of the same species. You can cook and eat their seeds in the same way.
Some seeds, such as pumpkin seeds, tend to be bigger and meatier. They roast well in high temperatures where the smaller seeds might burn more quickly. The secret is to roast them at 160 degrees Celsius for about 15 minutes and keep a close eye on them. I coat mine in melted butter with a bit of salt before putting them in the oven.
Gift Wrapping Paper
Save gift bags and wrapping paper from gifts you receive throughout the year. You can re-use them to wrap your Christmas gifts.
If you don't have wrapping paper you can re-use and think it's too late to get any there are other options.
Collect free newspapers and magazines. They make excellent wrapping paper. The key is knowing how to wrap the gifts. Pinterest has lots of ideas to help you.
Ditch paper serviettes and use cloth ones instead. They will last you through many dinners, celebrations and festive events. Over time you will save money, unnecessary waste and save the environment.
Christmas trees can be expensive. If you have a tall plant you can decorate that instead. Alternatively, you can arrange a few plants on a tall stand. It will give your plant tree height.
Not everyone has plants or a stand but most will have a stand for coats. Get creative and hang light-weight Christmas gifts of various sizes at different heights.
Once you've added a few decorations and some fairy lights you'll find you have a unique and impressive Christmas tree.
Buying Christmas gifts can be a source of pain or pleasure. It's painful when your budget is stretched. One way to deal with this is to set a limit on the value of the gifts your family and friends share.
Remember that Christmas is about enjoying the company of family and friends. Spend wisely, spend responsibly.