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Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa, it is a great time for family celebrations and giving. Gift giving is a tangible way to show your appreciation for your family and friends. It is easy to get swept up in the buying frenzy. Does your credit card balance give you the holiday blues? Do you buy way more than you can afford?

Make a list of everyone you would like to acknowledge with a gift this Christmas. Writing it down on paper is a good way to be more thoughtful about gift giving. Assign a dollar amount to each gift. Does your list and total amount you will spend reflect a realistic budget for your gift giving? If all your gifts are purchased on your credit card, how long will it take you to pay off that card after the new year? If any of these answers give you anxiety, you should reconsider your list and type of gift.

Are you crafty or own your own business? Consider handmade gifts or give a service from your business as a gift. Gifts do not need to be extravagant, just given from the heart. Your gift should be something you know would be meaningful to the person that is receiving it.

Every person has natural talents. If you love to cook, offer to cook a nice dinner for your loved one; if you are an animal lover offer to pet sit. There are plenty of creative ways to give a gift that is meaningful without spending a lot of money.

It is true, it’s the thought that counts. It should be meaningful for your loved ones.
Tis the season!

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