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What does your holiday spending for gifts and tips look like this year, readers? Are there special food items you only buy for the holidays (or special wine or liquor)? (And how are you keeping track of it all?) Let’s discuss…
Psst… here are all of our tips on holiday business etiquette!
For my $.02…
My 2023 Holiday Spending for Gifts and Tips
For gifts, I don’t know why but I roughly have a “$150 minimum” in my mind for parents, siblings, and in-laws. I can go above that if I want to, but in my mind I’m done if I’m somewhere in the $150 range. For the kids it can be tricky, both because we spend willy nilly on them throughout the year, plus both sets of grandparents are extraordinarily generous… so I may be the only mother on the planet who isn’t overly concerned with buying gifts for the kids.
(And when I do give them presents, they tend to be kind of abstract — for example, my 12-year-old is getting a budget to redecorate his room as his big present…)
Holiday Spending on Tips
For tips, life is a lot less complicated than it was years ago with a law firm secretary and so forth. I get the major teachers gift cards, and our cleaning professional’s gift will be the same amount as one of her regular visits… and a few other people will get a family holiday card with a small gift card inside.
(Here was our last big discussion on holiday tips…)
Special Holiday Food
We don’t have a huge outlay on food or drink because, well, my parents are still doing a lot of it, but my mother will often buy filet mignon and lobster for Christmas Eve and a ham for Christmas Day, and they usually have the liquor cabinet well stocked for their guests.
How I Keep Track of Holiday Spending
In terms of how to keep TRACK of it all… well, I’m still perfecting my system. I tend to buy for people starting in October, if not earlier, so keeping track of what I’ve bought for whom (and where I am in my random $150 scale) can be tricky for me.
This year I started a Word doc that lists each major family member and then (for each member):
General present ideas:
2023 Xmas Gifts:
2023 Stocking Stuffers:
So, hopefully I can keep track of what I’ve got on tap for this holiday season, as well as keep a running list of what I’ve gotten them in previous years, both to generate new ideas and make sure I don’t buy things I’ve already given them.
(We’ll see, of course… I actually started the Word doc in 2021 and then totally forgot about it…)
Readers, how about you — what does your holiday spending for gifts and tips look like this year?
Stock photo via Stencil.