Low Budget Christmas A frugal Giving and Gifting this Christmas
Christmas can be as savvy and thrifty as you make it, yet nearly all of us will start to loosen the reigns on our finances if we’re not careful as festive cheer or panic sets in. Obviously planning ahead, getting gifts in sales like Black Friday, finding Christmas cards reduced in the new year sales and even making your own gifts can cut costs. So, with that in mind, we through we’d share some great ideas and initiatives from both ourselves here at Savvy Dad HQ, and our favourite articles from other bloggers and companies. We’ll add to these ideas over the coming weeks to help towards a low budget christmas.
Savvy Letters From Santa
In the run up, think about the little, cute things. Sending a letter to the jolly fellow himself for example can be a great inspiring family event and, more importantly, can be free!
Royal Mail offer free Santa Mail service (just the cost of a stamp), and also aim to reply to all letters. You can find details of their service here http://www.royalmail.com/lette
If you want something a little bit more polished and magical for your low budget Christmas, maybe consider the NSPCC’s letter from Santa initiative, where they’ve teamed up with Lindt. Technically free, we do suggest giving the recommended donation to support them while doing it. Get your Lindt NSPCC Personalised Card Here
low budget Christmas eats for pennies.
Last year, Lidl’s mince pies beat Fortnum and Mason in the taste tests, and for only 19p each! Can they do it again this year for pennies? We’ll be testing them over the next week or two (all in the name of research obviously).
1 orange (10p)
1 Lemon (15p)
3 Tsps Mized Spice (10p)
1 tspn Cinnamon (5p)FOR THE PASTRY
350p Plain Flour (10p)
75g Lard (10p)
75g Butter (20p)
Splash of Milk (3p)
Icing Sugar to dust (2p)(Optional) Boozy Version:
4 Tablespoons Brandy (£1.05)
- First, weigh out the lard, butter (fats), cut into cubes and add them to a blender or bowl.
- Sift flour and tip into bowl slowly mixing until crumbly.
- Add 2 tablespoons of water and mix again, bringing it all together
- If you have time rest for 30 minutes to 1 hour in the fridge, and towards the end of this time preheat the oven to 400°F, 200°C.
- Divide the dough, into two pieces, this depends on how thinly you roll it. So roll it as thinly as possible, then use the cutter to cut the rounds from one piece and place into tins. Save any spare for decoration shapes, like stars, on top.
- Mix the spices, chopped apple and zests of the fruits (plus some of their juice) with 100ml water and simmer in a pan until softened. Let cool. (Tip: If making the boozy version add brandy now).
- Add one rounded teaspoon of the fruit mix to each pastry parcel.
- Next, roll out the other half of the pastry. Then use a smaller cutter before dampening the edges with milk and press them lightly into position on top of the mincemeat for lids, sealing the edges well, or use star shapes. (NOTE: If you choose to can make open pies to make the pastry go further and make more).
- Next, brush the mince pies with milk, pierce with a fork, then bake them on the top shelf of the oven for 20 minutes.
- Finally, let cool on a wire rack and, when they’re completely cold, place in storage.
- This will make about 30 mince pies.
Also consider checking out the latest diet friendly Christmas treats in our Gluten Free Christmas article or our Gluten Free Bulk Buys article.
Still Want More Festive Frugality to help a low budget Christmas?
For extra alternative ideas this Christmas, Cass over at The Frugal Family has put together some great ideas on thrifty ways to save via crafting. Check our her fab ideas here: http://www.frugalfamily.co.uk/