Decorating for Christmas is one of the traditions my family loves. This year we had a very small budget to use for decorations, but we still managed to have everything looking fabulous. I had $40 to work with, and I was able to find some great deals. This is how I did it, and what I bought.
Sacrificing the real tree
We have decided that this year we will be using our artificial tree and not buying a real one like in previous years. A real tree will cost between $30 and $35 each year, and using the one we had packed in storage cost us nothing. We have already put it up and gotten everything in place for our decorating party.
Cruising the Facebook garage sale sites
I love looking through the Facebook sales pages for my area. I have found many bargains on the pages and joined one specifically for Christmas and holiday items. There have been ornaments, tree skirts, and other decorations laid out for people to buy up. I decided to purchase three candy dishes and some figurines for our Christmas village. The total spent was $7, and that was a really good deal.
We have been putting together a Christmas village for three years now. This is the first year we will be able to display it on top of a fireplace, which means we will need fake snow and other decorative items. I checked the local craft store, and a bunch of the cotton-like fake snow cost us $8. I needed two bags. While $16 doesn't seem like a lot of money, it is almost half of our Christmas decorating budget. This will be the only big purchase we make for this year, but it is totally worth it.
I have purchased various window-clings from the dollar store. My son adored the ones we put up for Halloween, and these are a hit as well. There are six sets we bought for the windows, nine nice Santa plates for dessert, and two balls for the boys. I ended up spending $17 on this trip, which put me right at our budget.
After everything is said and done, the total spent is right at $40. That is just what I originally budgeted, making decorating this year a success. In just a few days, the process of decorating the tree will begin and that will complete the process. Even though the decorations will not be over the top this year, it is still going to be special.
*Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Do you have a personal finance story that you'd like to share? Sign up with the Yahoo! Contributor Network to start publishing your own finance articles.More from this contributor First Person: Cutting Out 3 'Luxuries' Will Save Our Family $2,000 a Year