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Dreaming of a "Green" Christmas? Click here for your handy recycling guide to the festive period.
To help you get organised click here....
Health... aggghhh its a stressy time, click here for help and advice.
Family Relations and Stress, who needs it! Click here.
Decoration Tips are found here.
and finally dont spend to much, Click here for help and advice.

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Finances at Christmas

With all the excitement that Christmas brings, it is so easy to get caught up in the moment and spend, spend, spend…

There are simple ways to ensure that you can keep to a set budget, which will give you the freedom to enjoy Christmas without worrying about the bills that may drop through your letterbox in the New Year. You never know, you might even have enough left over to have a flutter in the January sales!

To help you get financially prepared for this very enjoyable, but expensive, time of the year, Elements , a nationwide network of female financial advisors, have put together a list of their top ten tips to ensure that you have a stress free Christmas.

Be prepared! Planning is essential for Christmas. Write down everything that you need to buy including presents, food, drink, clothes and don't forget the parties!
Always include an extra amount for Christmas when you plan your annual budge, then it won't be such a shock.
Decide who you will be buying presents for and write a list. Next to each name you need to include a gift budget, idea, actual gift bought and the cost. Try and stick to your budget.
Rather than buying everything at once spread the cost over a few months.
If you are hosting Christmas Lunch or another big festivity, then plan a menu in advance and write a shopping list. If you stick to it, then you will buy only what you need and avoid any waste.
How about exploring your creative side and making some gifts? Home made chocolates wrapped in brightly coloured boxes, preserves in decorative jars or even flavoured Olive Oil are all great ideas and they show the recipient that you have really thought about their present. This is especially good if you buy for elderly relatives, as they sometimes prefer more thoughtful presents than the usual gift set of bubble bath and talcum powder!
Don't feel pressured into buying everything that children ask for just because you are convinced that they will be devastated if they don't have the latest craze!
If you have supermarket loyalty cards, then save up the points. At Christmas you can use the points or vouchers to buy extra treats or maybe even stock up on wine.
If you usually buy a present for all of your friends then why not suggest a ‘Secret Santa' instead this year. Everybody buys one present, wraps it and puts it in a Christmas sack. You all then take turns in choosing a present. Alternatively, you could put all names in a hat and choose one each and buy for that person, but don't let them know you are buying for them!
Finally, when you go to the January sales – why not buy for the following Christmas? You can get your wrapping paper, cards, tags and presents – all at greatly reduced prices.

 

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