Since I’ve gotten all of my Christmas presents shipped and out the door I thought I’d give a final tally on how much I spent this year on Christmas:
- Airfare – $121 (reimbursed $120 of the $241 airfare by my dad)
- Doggy daycare – $220
- Christmas present for my grandma – $6 Pea Coat purchased in March
- Christmas present for grandma #2 – $0 – purchased with Swagbucks through Amazon.com
- Christmas present for my stepdad – $15 – shirt from the Indy 500 and an invitation to join me next year (I get 2 free tickets) – purchased in May – small Harley gift I found in the apartment that I picked up 2 years ago on road trip (original price unknown)
- Christmas present for my dad – $86 -bought impromptu gift from my sis and I, all other gifts purchased with Swagbucks through Amazon.com
- Christmas present for my sister – $0 – all gifts purchased with Swagbucks through Amazon.com
- Christmas presents for labmates – $0 – decided that this year I would not buy/make cookies for lab
- Christmas presents for students – $7 – decided to give my students the cookies on the last day of class instead
- Christmas present for Jack – $3 – Cute little turtle toy I couldn’t resist – he played with it for about 3 hours straight after I gave it to him
- Christmas present shipping – $27
My goal was to pay nothing for Christmas out of pocket. However I made that goal before I decided to visit my dad for Christmas. It you subtract the cost of that, I only paid $144 for Christmas presents this year (I had $140 available in my Christmas “envelope”, so only $4 over what was available to me).
Including travel related expenses, I spent $485 on Christmas. (I’ll need to keep this in mind next year! A $500 budget INCLUDING travel – right now I only have $180 budgeted for 2010 Christmas.)
I also feel fairly good about the gifts that I got everyone. The pea coat for my grandma is absolutely gorgeous, I got such a steal on that. My stepdad will love the Indy 500 stuff I sent him.
My dad and sister will appreciate their gifts. With the exception of the extremely splurge-tastic decision to get my dad a picture frame, I didn’t go as extravagant on them as I have in years past, but the majority of their “present” from me was just be the fact that I’m there to celebrate with them – which I didn’t get to do last year.
I was very tempted being here with my aunt and cousins for Christmas to buy them stuff. But I decided not to. I feel cheap, but I didn’t want to spend money on them considering I only see them maybe every 2-3 years and we don’t talk in between visits. I did talk to my aunt about my saving money goals, because she’s really good with money, so I hope she’ll understand. I guess I just figure if I wouldn’t buy something and mail it to them, why would I buy something for them since I’m here? It is a little confusing to me, I’m not sure what the correct “protocol” is for such things.
How did you do? Were you under budget? Over budget? What do you think you’ll do differently next year?