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Holiday Update

December 19th, 2009 at 09:48 pm

**I looked in Quicken today, and it looks like the Christmas damage is $500-ish.

It's hard to say since December is the month of birthday, and I just lump all that in too. Though I haven't bought a food processor for dh yet - his birthday is towards the end of January - and probably won't be lumped with "Christmas."

Another thing on the "maybe list" is a new digital camera. The price and quality is amazing these days, but we did spend a lot for our camera in 2002 (when I first became pregnant with child). As long as it still works, I suppose we have been sluggish to pull the trigger. But the $100 price point does it for me. Something we will have to discuss. (We've been discussing it forever, but I suppose I should have dh scour the ads carefully the next few weeks - see what we can score. Tell him that I think it's time...).

Anyway, as to Christmas spending, items of note:

**$130 on the in-laws. They always give us cash, and they are WAY into materialistic Christmas, so they are really the only ones we splurge on. We actually went halves with SIL for a Blu Ray player and various gift certificates. We do a calendar with pics of the grandkids every year, too. Which I do have to hand it to them - that is always the hit of Christmas. Not that it is ALL marterialistic...

*$50 gift cards to teachers. For them, I figured they are always buying things for the classroom, and I know a lot of teachers who get so much crap, they really appreciate something useful like that. I figure it's up to them if they use it for the classroom or to buy themselves a treat. I know they will appreciate it either way.

Hmmmm, what the heck did we spend another $300 on? I'll have to look in Quicken later - drawing a blank. I suppose $50 for my boss's gift, as well as $20-ish for the gift exchange. That adds up fast. I suppose we spent $200 on ourselves, kids, my parents, plus my birthday and my folks' birthdays.

Dh bought some video game for the kids and has a pile of free Scholastic stuff (books mostly, but also video games and toys, etc., etc). We bought a Twister game as well. More last minute, LM bought BM a Bop It, and we bought LM an Etch a Sketch because he absolutely fell in love with one at the museum. While shopping I spotted a generic "Jenga" game for $5-ish. I have to remember to pick that up. We still have to replace the inappropriate "Truth & Dare" one. Though that will be discreetly replaced - no fanfare there.

We kind of entered December thinking the Scholastic bounty would be enough. Probably, but the kids wanted to buy each other gifts, and on and on. Since MIL is such a gift hog (as mentioned before) we feel it is all probably way too much. Since they will get a zillion gifts from Grandma. Oh well!

Dh and I Also divvy up my modest bonus every Christmas, to contribute to our favorite charities. (Usually we both pick very different ones). This year, we both agreed that our charity of choice for 2009 was BM's public charter school. We have already advanced the funds. (Of course, schools can always use financial help, but as a Charter they are the only ones in the school district retaining small class sizes and extra-curricular activities, for this school year and probably many more to come. To be able to do this requires extra financial support though. Moreso this year than ever, with so many parents out of work, etc.).

We usually donate FAR more time than cash to charity. So, that about does it for the year. Though, with BM's first year in school, I feel like I will have a larger charitable tax deduction than usual (lots of little outflows to the school, throughout the year).


**This Sunday we will have our materialistic in-law Christmas celebration. At SIL's home. So yeah - tomorrow the kids will be spoiled rotten!

On Christmas Day we will have our low-key "At home" celebration.


**I suppose not much more to report.

Work will be crazy busy the next 2 weeks. I will be able to collapse on New YEars Eve (late in the day anyway). I will also be able to enjoy Christmas Day, but that's about it.

Today dh took my vehicle in for an oil change, and ran some errands for me, since I had to work. Typical dh, but I very much appreciate it! There are many intangible benefits to having a non-working spouse.

Dh has his big appointment on Monday with a specialist in the Bay Area. I am so crossing my fingers that we all like him, since he is covered by our insurer. & I hope this means we can get a surgery date and start making plans. (Though MIL doesn't matter so much, things will be a million times easier if she supports our decision!!!!!! So yes - hope she likes him too). I think dh and I are pretty set, unless we get a bad gut feeling about the guy, or something along those lines. He's the best we can afford! Well, the best and CLOSEST to home - which is also important if at all feasible.

Some days I just have no idea how I am going to do everything I do + everything dh does, while he is recovering. But I suppose, one thing at a time!

6 Responses to “Holiday Update”

  1. debtfreeme Says:

    Good luck on Monday with the Doctor Appointment.

    I wondered, with the lists of toys the kids ask for, do you ever seperate the lists for your two sets of parents? I think you have mentioned before that one set buys a lost of the items on the lists?

  2. monkeymama Says:


    The kids don't really have wish lists. In-laws want to buy a bajillion toys, and my parents don't really want to.

    Plus, my folks don't do wish lists, anyway. They would prefer to buy something if they saw it and thought the kids would like it. But feel they are too spoiled to really appreciate any more gifts (which is totally true). My folks also aren't much into giving away cash. So they aren't particularly interested in investing in their college fund (hell - they didn't pay for my college). They just try to be more creative - which works. We've been working on that the last couple of years. I hear this year that LM is getting a photo album or collage from amateur photographer grandpa - which is an awesome gift!

  3. debtfreeme Says:

    that photo album is a great idea! I wish I had more things from my grandparents.

  4. baselle Says:

    I've been finding that if you have to ship something, that cost adds up fast. Maybe that's part of the $300?

  5. monkeymama Says:

    No - I didn't pay to ship anything, anywhere.

  6. monkeymama Says:

    P.S. From Grandpa, it was a "photo book" - one of those Shutterfly ones. We got it yesterday. IT was AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

    We made one of those when BM was a baby. I am thinking we should do another one - dh had been talking of doing one of their Florida trip.

    I am sure it wasn't exactly cheap, but will be cherished for a long time!

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