Big Holidays with Little Money

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For college students, The Christmas season means either taking a big hit on the already thin wallet or compromise on the most magical time of the year. But neither is necessary when Christmas can be done on a budget. The following are several things that one can do to keep from going broke this Holiday season.

First, give experiences, not gifts. Most people have piles of unnecessary stuff just lying around, so why add to the clutter? It takes a little planning, but the resulting memories is more lasting than most of the items purchased. One option is a weekend road trip, after the snow finally melts, taking bikes and tents to enhance the outdoor adventure. Planning a sledding day and making it more special by bringing loads of hot chocolate is another. The gift of time is one worth giving this year.

Photo retrieved from kimberlycstarr.com

Second, hit up the local dollar store. An entire apartment can be decorated for $10-20 and a little creativity. Pinterest is full of simple decorations that can boost the festivities to the max. The dollar store is also an easy location for inexpensive gifts, but once again, creativity is key. One can do a spa themed gift, including nail polish, bubble bath, and face masks. 

Third, give secondhand gifts. There are several gifts we receive and never use, so try and find them a new home. Or even give a gently loved item that has since gotten a little dusty on the shelf. Books are a great example of this, giving someone a beloved story is always a great way to share.

Fourth, go handmade. Handmade can be synonymous with made with love, because the time spent to create something is just as generous as the actual gift. DIY is a continual trend so go with the flow and make simple items as mini rice bag hand warmers, a peppermint sugar scrub, holiday stovetop potpourri, or soup mix in a can. All of these things can be well enjoyed.

Christmas does not have to break the bank. Sentiment and love can be communicated in simplicity and thoughtfulness. Taking a little more time to think of lovely, inexpensive gift this year will make the holiday season more appreciated by all who experience it.

Tessa Thornley is a Communications major, in her second year at Snow College. She chose the path of journalism because of her love of storytelling. She inherited that love from her English teacher mother, and after growing up in the passenger seat of her dad's pickup truck, hearing his tales. She aspires to continue documenting people's stories through words and photos as a photojournalist.

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