Special occasions will pop up throughout the year and they can add up to quite a substantial amount of money to spend if you’re not savvy. But you are savvy, so lets take a look at how you can plan for these occasions and not break the bank doing it! Here are 5 easy ways to get started.
1. Firstly it’s a good idea to list all the occasions you know are planned throughout the coming year and also add them to your calendar and phone so you are reminded. You should also add them to your ‘Dates to Remember’ printout (This is in your Home Folder Printouts) so they are always front and centre. Planning appropriately in advance will help you stick to your budget and not impulse buy at the last minute.
2. Make a list of gift ideas you think recipients would like and keep this list for future gift giving too! When you have an idea of what gifts you’d like to give you then need to keep an eye out for sales and specials throughout the year and buy savvy as they arise. Stashing presents makes life a lot easier – just remember to add their name to the gift so you don’t get anything mixed up. This week I saw some beautiful kitchenware at my local Spotlight store and have bought a few pieces to stash away for gifts at Christmas.
3. Planning for parties needs to be done well in advance, months in advance to make the occasion run smoothly. Consider invite lists, invitations and giving people enough notice before the event, organising the menu and food, table setting and decorations etc. Is a cake involved? If so you need that organised weeks before the date. Your calendar in your Home Folder Printouts will help you keep track.
4. If you have to travel to an occasion then make sure you check out all the deals and costs well in advance. Consider where you will be staying and any hire costs and then if you’re taking a gift make sure you can transport it easily. Organise to borrow jackets and warm clothes if you need to and don’t forget phone chargers, medications, exchange rate fees and sorting out international roaming on your phone before you leave. Passports need to be organised well in advance too, perhaps months so check to see if yours is valid to avoid problems.
5. Make sure you have a couple of outfits you can wear to most occasions, perhaps topped with a nice coat or throw. A few suitable pairs of shoes and matching clutch should see you through.
Christmas Tips – Don’t over do the gifts! One or two gifts per person is more than enough if you put some thought into it. Consider making gifts if you can produce something lovely worth giving. Make your own cards or gift tags or buy them when they are on sale, usually after Xmas. Do your Xmas shopping well in advance and stick to a budget you can afford – don’t rack up a debt on credit cards.
New Year – If you’re planning a New Years party why not ask everyone to bring a dish to share so you get a great assortment of foods everyone will love! A ‘finger foods’ or ‘canape’ theme would suit the hours waiting for new year to arrive. Search Google for free New Year printables to download to decorate your party. Buy some special drinks throughout the year and save them for the night and ask everyone to bring their own drinks too.
Anniversary – It’s a nice idea to buy an anniversary gift that coincides with the year you are celebrating. Click here for an Anniversary Year List
Birthdays – A birthday gift given with thought is the most wonderful gift to receive, wouldn’t you agree? When you buy someone a gift, put a little thought into what they like and buy or make them something from your heart. After all that is what gift giving is all about.
School Holidays – Plan for the school holidays a bit in advance and you’ll save yourself a lot of stress. Write a list of ideas that will keep the kids amused, places to visit, movies to see, picnics, camping in the backyard etc. Check out our ‘Recreation Page‘ for some ideas. Also bake up some treats to freeze and bring them out when you need to! Things like biscuits, scones, pizzas and cakes will be appreciated.
Easter – Print out some free Easter printables by finding them on the net. This will make your Easter weekend extra special for the kids. Get them to do some ‘egg’ crafts like dying eggs and teach them about the real meaning of Easter! Plan a lovely Easter meal celebration and go easy on the chocolate.
Mothers Day – Mums love nothing more than being told you love them on Mother’s Day! If you can why not throw a Mother’s Day lunch or high tea for your mum at home. Make some special finger sandwiches, little tarts and mini hot savouries and there you have it. A bunch of cut flowers and a beautiful card is all you need to make your mum feel loved on her special day.
Fathers Day – The same goes for dad on Father’s Day. Maybe throw him a BBQ lunch or slow cook some ribs and spoil him with a nice day of relaxing. Make a batch of his favourite biscuits and write him a lovely card or note letting him know how much you appreciate and love him. Collect all the photos you can of him and the family and reminisce for a while.
Holidays – Read our ‘Recreation‘ page for lots of tips and ways to save money on holidays.