Holiday gifts to help your depleted wallet…

So like a lot of us at holiday times, we really start to look at our depleting bank accounts, rising hydro & living costs & say no way can I afford it!

I know how you feel.  I may not have kids or significant other, but in the past have tried to give to certain family and friends.  

Sometimes we just have to tell people I’m sorry but my bills have to come first.  It’s a hard thing to do.  It is fueled with heartache, feelings of failure and not being able to do what you want in life.

What you need to remember, is Christmas has turned into such a greedy time of year.  The time we used to spend with people has dwindled significantly because of our need to work to afford our lifestyles of the not so rich and not so famous!

I propose some ideas to help you feel that you have given, while still keeping cash in pocket.  Maybe get together with friends and family and decide to do them as a group.  Here they are:

  • Go through your closet and give away clothing and housewares you no longer use or wear.  There are many charities that could use the help.
  • If you know a family or newly widowed or sickly neighbour going through a hard time.  Offer your spare time to maybe prepare some food or just sit and chat.  Company is wonderful when someone is lonely.
  • Volunteering at a soup kitchen or crafting items for seniors homes or hospitals for sick children.
  • Offering rides at a local hospital for cancer patients.
  • If you are a builder or handyman, offer discounted services to the elderly or financially strapped families over the holidays.  
  • If you can clean, offer to help a neighbour or friend who, maybe due to mental health issues cannot keep up with daily chores around their home.
  • If your good with research, offer help to people you may know, that may be struggling to find work.
  • If your a skilled musician or vocalists, do a small show at long term care facilities, or hospitals for the patients.
  • Take part in fund raising campaigns for things like local radio stations, treatment programs & programs for youth.
  • If you have an old vehicle that’s not working, why not donate it to kidney car, you even get a tax receipt!
  • If you have children, you can help them make gifts for nursing homes etc…like decorative tissue boxes, fancy throws, knit sweaters and slippers if you can knit.

These are just a few ideas to maybe give you some inspiration, and maybe to feel like you still can give even though you can’t financially.

In my own life, I can honestly tell you, it’s the time I’ve spent with people, the thought they put into things, that I recall the most.  Yes presents are nice, but the memories you can give someone by being present and helpful, are just as precious!

Love always,

Natalie L’amour 

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