The holidays will be upon us in no time, and that includes Thanksgiving and Christmas. This can be a very expensive time for all of us, but can be particularly challenging for those retirees living on a fixed income. How can you share gifts and food during the holidays, yet save money and be thrifty? You have to be creative and proactive, not resort to last-minute panic spending. Get your list of names put together early; then, really think about each person and their hobbies, sports, jobs, clubs, pets, and games. What are their favorite foods, restaurants, movie theaters, specialty shops, and clothing stores? 

Some of the nicest gifts we have received from our sons have been restaurant gift certificates, gift cards to Barnes & Noble, and gift packs to the movie theater, which include tickets and a free bucket of popcorn, with sodas. We absolutely love receiving these gifts, as we can use them throughout the year. 

Some of the nicest ways to say "Happy Thanksgiving," are giving a handmade card with verses that express how much your loved ones mean to you and enclosing photos of a special time you shared with each other. People love the memories of photos, and so many of my friends are into scrapbooking. Now you talk about a photo album-- those are spectacular! They are just full of personal photographs with all kinds of artwork and verses under each picture. Each page is an autographed memory of a special event. 

We are holding Arts and Crafts Shows in October and there are over 300 vendors who sell their handmade products. Picking up items at these shows is a great way to get started on shopping for the holidays. You can get nice personalized gifts for $10. I love a window catcher that my girlfriend bought me for my birthday. It is in my kitchen window and reflects the sun through the yellow glass so beautifully. Another gift I received is a small a little scarf for my Chihuahua who loves to wear them after she has her bath.  

Any small pet gift is always so appreciated-- even a bag of goody snacks, for those special treats. We just discovered a new collection available at one of our specialty shops and it's a whole line of miniature Chihuahuas in different clothing. Hubby got me one for my birthday and she has an adorable red and white checked dress with a red hat, pocketbook, and high heels; the purse says "Gone Shopping." If that isn't me?! They have another one sitting in a teacup, one with tap shoes, and several more that I really would like to collect.  

Since I moved to Florida, I have begun collecting sand cranes. You can buy them in all sizes and forms, and they sell lots of paintings and pictures in our stores with all types of birds. They look colorful in any room of the house.  

Hopefully, these ideas will help you financially prepare for the Holidays.  

Some Related Posts:

Things to do now to Avoid Holiday Financial Hassles  

Enter the Fall Season with Some Savings 

Financially Fit TV Dads Dealing with Debt


Linda Reese

Linda is a contributing writer for the Retired & Loving it blog. Linda is retired, married, and enjoying her retirement in a retirement community in Florida. She shares her experiences with others who are facing retirement or already there with posts on living on a fixed income, budgeting, and healthcare issues. Compensated CareOne Blogger.

 To follow us click here