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Encouraging Heroes. You can be one too.

The holidays can be a rather expensive and stressful time; making it a challenge for parents who try attempting to balance the festive period with their household expenses and budgets. Parties, food, beverages and decorations can add up quickly – and that’s even before factoring in gifts for your children and other loved ones. Thankfully, putting together amazing gifts for them doesn’t mean having to break the bank. Here are some great gift giving tips to get you started.

1. Shop online
Doing your holiday shopping in the comfort of your home is not just convenient but it will also help you save money as you won’t be spending on gas; and also plenty of online sellers offer great deals. Some manufacturer websites offer product discounts when you order from their online stores, and free shipping during the holiday season. Alternatively, check out online listings websites such as Quicksales.com.au for great bargains by sellers who offer a variety of both new and second hand products. A lot of these sites also provide the option of bidding on items – potentially get them far below their original retail prices.

2. Try DIY gifts
Sometimes, a heartfelt handmade present goes a long way in making the holiday season just that little bit more special. By crafting gifts for your children, you open up a world of creativity and can tailor make the present to your child’s interest. Is he or she a fan of Minecraft? How about knitting him/her an adorable creeper doll instead of paying premium for store bought merchandise. If they’re into the latest fashions and you’re a keen sewer, you can create a unique piece of clothing made especially for them.

3. Purchase second hand items
Giving your child pre-loved items for the holidays can be a practical option for the parent on a tight budget. Visit local flea markets or yard sales to discover pre-loved toys or collectables that are still in great condition. Don’t be surprised to find slightly old but unused toys at your local yard or garage sale, which will make terrific stocking stuffers for your little ones.

4. Be Modest
A number of parents feel extreme pressure to provide Christmas gifts for their children; but just because the family next door are spending a certain amount of money on gifts, doesn’t mean you have to. Parents often feel pressured to provide the very best and more for their children, but whatever you can provide is sure to be more than enough for your kids. If your current budget doesn’t allow for big-purchase items this Christmas, then don’t feel pressured to overspend just in order to purchase these items.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents who want to mind the budget this holiday season.