Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Thrifty Thursday

It is possible to be thrifty without feeling deprived and I'm sharing ideas in this summer series. If you have an money-saving idea, consider sharing it on your blog and leaving your link at the bottom of this post. The only rule? Share what you know. If I've never personally tried an idea, I won't write about it. The same goes for you, but don't assume an idea is too simplistic. It could be new to someone or it could re-inspire someone else!

In my family, we celebrate a lot of summer birthdays.  And being the type of person that I am (obsessive compulsive, over-organized, etc.), I begin thinking of Christmas gift-giving months before the actual holiday.  I love choosing gifts, but all  this buying and giving can put a strain on the pocketbook so this week's frugal tip is: Be creative with gift-giving. 

I like to sew in the evening after the kids are in bed so I've often used those hours in crafting gifts.  I've appliqued many, many baby onesies to give at baby showers.  I've embroidered T-shirts for older children, too.  For Brian's birthday last year, I had Gavin draw a picture of his daddy and them I embroiderd the artwork onto a piece of fabric and made it into a bookmark that will be a forever heirloom. 

You don't have to be crafty to be creative either.  In the spring, I picked up a dainty ramekin at Target and filled it with a bit of potting soil and a sprig of mint from my backyard.  It held such a cheerful place on my kitchen windowsill while we waited for it to grow that Maddie and I hated to see it go when the time came to give it away! 

In our own house, we've discovered a delightful money-saving idea for Christmas morning.  Once a baby or toddler outgrows a toys, we squirrel it away in the spare bedroom.  As the child gets older, we allow them to give the toy to a sibling.  Gavin had a special affection for his corn popper toy when he first learned to walk so last Christmas when Benjamin was the same age, we let Gavin give the toy to his little brother.  Both boys were delighted and the toys now has special meaning to two little people! 

You don't have to stop with the actual gift either.  Be creative with the wrapping and the cards.  For Father's Day, my children wrapped their gifts for Brian in brown bags that they had colored and decorated themselves.  And all the beautiful paper and stamps and stickers that I collected when I still had time for scrapbooking?  Instead I use them to make easy cards and gift tags. 


  1. Great one! We do the same... I check out yard sales and after season sales for bday gifts and Christmas presents. We also pack away baby gifts and allow the older boy(s) to give to the baby! I think it makes the older ones proud to pass down and give!

  2. I love your idea about letting a child give a toy he's outgrown to a younger sibling. That's terrific! Thank you, Kristin.

  3. I LOVE Brian's bookmark! What a wonderful way to preserve a child's artwork!


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