Hidey ho frugal neighbors – welcome to Christmas hangover! But not to fret just yet – let’s talk about ALL THE PRESENTS WE JUST GOT – WOO!!!
And more specifically, those presents that were so financially sexy that you can’t help but to gift forward yourself next year. Re-gifting the perfect gift ideas! See what we did there? ;)
We’ll start with my wife’s favorite we got…
Gift #1: Costco Membership!
Why this is a great gift: You get to save a lot of money!! From baby diapers to clothes to steaks – at least according to my family… I literally haven’t shopped there since I bought my first cell phone 15 years ago (Nokia candy bar that allowed “text messages” – high tech! :)) so I’m super excited to try out this bulk shopping. Also, did you know Costco is the largest fine wine seller in the country? Mmm…
Gift #2: “Walden” by Henry David Thoreau
Why this is a great gift: I’m only on page 8 so far, but according to really smart people this book can be a total life changer. Forcing you to think about what’s really important in life, and what you can actually live without while still leading a pretty blessed life. I’m not one to usually read these types of sophisticated books (probably because they were forced down my throat in school when I wasn’t mature enough for them) but after coming across it in that mobile living documentary I made sure to drop enough hints this holiday to guarantee I received it :) And now I’ll have a resource that’s actually not a blog for once to rely on during conversations with adults! Hah!
(Btw, you know how once you find out about something you start seeing it EVERYWHERE? I’ve literally read quotes from Walden or Thoreau at least 3 different times over the weekend – it’s nuts. And also awesome. A favorite was a post I read from Momastery on gratefulness – “Walden reminds me that when I feel lacking- I don’t need new things, I need new eyes with which to see the things I already have.” I highly recommend reading it, thanks to Cait Flanders who first brought it to my attention.)
Gift #3: “The Little Book of Common Sense Investing” by Jack Bogle
Why this is a great gift: Because index investing is something EVERYONE should learn about whether they agree with the strategy or not. And Jack Bogle is the inventor of them who’s company (Vanguard) has a cult following due to their incredibly low fees. Even Warren Buffett recommends the majority of people would be better off sticking to index funds! It took me 34 years to finally catch on, and apparently this is the book to read on it.
Gift #4: Chocolate gold coins
Why this is a great
gift stocking stuffer: It’s CHOCOLATE!!! And COINS!!!!
Another great stocking stuffer idea? Lottery tickets… Nothing says “you might become a millionaire over night!” for such small amount of output :) Or, in my case, a $2.00-aire which is what I became myself this Christmas, haha…
Gift #5: Coin counting tubes
Why this is a great gift: You know how most banks don’t have coin machines anymore? And Coinstar charges like 10% to trade them in for bills, unless you opt for a gift card instead? (which you’d then just turn around and end up spending?) Well these bad boys not only helps you count them faster, but also to get the right amounts into those old school paper rolls which us frugal ones are now forced to do to cash them in.
Gift #6: Gag gift
Why this is a great gift: Because we all need a good laugh every now and then :) And this one is literally a gift meant for re-gifting over the years as you help carry on (or start) the family tradition! This penis one is a new one in recent years for us, with others being a can of dehydrated water, a weird nut cracker, and a large jock strap. Those latter three have been circulating our family going on 30 years now, and I suspect they’ll carry on for another 30 too!
Gift #7: Compliments
Why this is a great gift: Have you ever not liked hearing a compliment? Of course not. And not only do some of them stick with you forever, but they’re free and take a matter of seconds to rattle off.
On my birthday Friday I asked if people would share how BudgetsAreSexy has helped them over the years, and I haven’t stopped re-reading the comments since. THANK YOU GUYS so much for taking the time to let me know! We often don’t get to hear how we affect the lives of others on any given day, so this was a nice way to get real-life feedback. Whether it’s a faux pas to ask for them or not ;) If you’d like to add to my joy yourself, click on over and share what you’ve gotten from this site as well!
Another great way to leave a compliment is to drop a note in your loved one’s stocking, or better yet – the mail. Real mail, like with pen and paper. My sister printed off a “gratitude prayer” that went to us siblings this Christmas season – it was beautiful.
“Celebration” by Lori Eberhardy
I want to celebrate you.
I am truly blessed to be a part of your world.
I learn from you, I admire you, I love you.
You are my own personal star that follows me
around and shines down on me.
You light my life with magic and wonder.
Such a gift of love.
You are a part of my soul.
You own a piece of my heart.
Your loving spirit provides a constant parade
of emotions that warm my heart.
I feel complete knowing you are near.
I feel empty without you.
I want to celebrate you,
yesterday, today and tomorrow.
These were my favorite gifts I received this year. Helpful, thoughtful, ideas that enrich either the heart or the brain (or the wallet). And most of which cost under $15!
So it was a splendid holiday/birthday celebration in the Money household indeed. And I did jack for work too allowing me to spend the most time with family this week which is the ultimate gift of all. It wasn’t paid time off like most of you 9-5’ers get (you dirty bastards ;)), but I enjoyed it all very much indeed. We need to force ourselves to take breaks some times!
Now tell me – what did y’all get this year that you found to be the perfect ideas to gift forward? And how many of you have already started working on your Christmas budget for next year? You know who you financial studs are – don’t hide!
PS: I learned that some of you gave these wonderful gifts I recommended last month as well. Way to go! You just helped your loved ones become millionaires :)
[Cupcake photo by Aih / Doodled on by J$]
Get blog posts automatically emailed to you!
I got a nice sweater, but then my wife accidentally shrunk it down to half-size when she washed it. Now it’s my 9YO son’s sweater. :)
Hah! Hopefully you got to wear it at least once!
Nice! Costco is awesome–I think you’re going to love it. Our families gave us wonderfully practical things this year, all of which we love: a measuring cup, a mattress pad, a measuring tape, and a few other household accoutrements. Apparently we need to be more precise in our measurements this year :).
Or they want you to make them things :)
Real life compliments are pretty freakin’ awesome. Sometimes I’m getting so caught up in this virtual world that I forget there are real people reading this stuff.
As for gifts, my absolute favorite thing I got was a handwritten note from my boyfriend. Not for re-gifting obviously, but so unbelievably moving- I cried, haha.
Tell him to send me a copy of it to use on my wife! :)
You know those white elephant gift exchanges at work?
I received talking mistletoe *grin* which, because two dear friends of mine got married the week before Christmas, became part of their wedding presents and was used at the reception!
I was also able to forward on to heart family two bracelets left to me by my mother. Without daughters (or nieces – maybe one day granddaughters?) I find these mementos with their history a great gift for those who are close to me. And, they wear them! It makes me very happy to see them worn.
That sounds like a beautiful gift indeed :)
My in-laws gave me a hefty gift card to LL Bean. I am long overdue for a proper winter coat. Now, not only will I be warm for the rest of the winter, but it will make it easier to say yes to all of Hubs’ winter adventures!
The gift that keeps on giving – woo!
Pace yourself in Costco, you might be overwhelmed if you haven’t been in there in awhile. I’d much rather share the gifts I gave. The best gifts I gave this year were a video card for my oldest son’s computer, now he can play games in full HD. My daughter received some anime manga’s she had been wanting, my youngest son received an action replay for his 3DS and my wife a nice scarf from Vera Bradley. All wants fulfilled!
I was thinking of your post mid-way through writing this, haha… I like that you prefer talking about what you gave vs got :)
I like the Costco membership gift idea!
I didn’t get anything too exciting. My husband bought me my favorite perfume and my parents bought me odds and ends- mostly stuff I will use. I bought my kids a used wii off craigslist and that was probably my favorite gift this year, even though it wasn’t for me. We’ve been playing Just Dance and it kicks my ass. My entire body hurts today. It’s awesome.
Sounds like a much more fun way to work out :)
You know I’ve never read Walden either so I need to add that to my list! Costco is also a great one! I just got some money, which of course anyone can use! Boring…but awesome as well. :)
I have yet to see someone turn it down, that’s for sure ;)
Can’t beat the Costco membership as a gift. And, yes, they do have quite the wine selection. :)
Love the Bogle book as well – it’s one of my first books to recommend for new investors.
Glad you got some time off J! While ours wasn’t paid as well, I’ll take the time off any day. We didn’t exchange this year but instead using the cash for a weekend trip this Spring. We’d much rather have the time off as a family as opposed to more crap around the house. We actually are moving over our first amount for next Christmas to one of our savings accounts today. :)
Sounds like a family I’d love to be a part of, haha…. (can I fit in your suit case?)
Challenge Time! Go to Costco the first time and don’t buy a thing, figure out what they have that you like, want, love, and take a picture or write it down. It’s easy to drop hundreds of dollars and then you might have to change the name to Our Budget Got Ugly.
I got some great workout clothes, and a Starbucks gift card! Also, I got a lottery scratch-off, and won $10!!
Rock on! That’s $8.00 more than I won… and I scratched off 7 of them!
I got a few good things too, $25 which I used to buy some pet food and cover a budget shortage, a head wrap for cold weather, a new book from my brother, a board game. I didn’t really get anything this year that I’d consider “clutter”, which is good. :)
I’ve heard great things about Walden, but never read it – Civil Disobedience is one of my favorites though. One of my favorites was a dollar scratch off from one of my aunt’s – it turned into $5. Very exciting.
I’ve never heard of Civil Disobedience before but the blurb on it sounded quite fascinating… We’ll see if I have the motivation to read that part of the book :)
My husband’s parents and sister got us gifts even though we tried to communicate “let’s just focus on the kids.” They shipped us a fireproof safe and a knife sharpening kit. All very practical things which we will definitely use, but really, we would prefer they not do gifts people. I got my side to go with the program, he just needs to work on his side now. We did not get them anything! Awkward!
I’d love a Costco membership, that’s is awesome! Did you know wine and liquor are not sold in any Utah Costcos? Wine, liquor and full strength beer must be sold in a State Liquor Agency. There may be beer available for purchase but it’s a 3.2% version of your favorites. Bummer!
Yikes – awkward indeed! Definitely not fun when both sides aren’t on the same page.
And no – I did not know that about Utah, interesting! Also – sucky! ;)
We had to “opt out” of Christmas gifts for the most part, except for our son (he’s 4). He asked Santa for a “big blue monster truck I can ride in”…and within days someone posted a blue Ford truck powerwheel on Craigslist for $60. Score! As for my favorite gift? Well, our septic tank decided to clog and become very stinky a few days before Christmas, and my MIL foot the bill for it ($500)!! VERY thankful for that!
Costco is a great gift! We don’t live near one, but have a BJs instead, which also accept manufacturer coupons – great for diapers. :)
I didn’t know Santa shops at Craigslist? :)
I read Walden in high school and haven’t since and now you make me want to read it again. I quote Thoreau ALL the time! In fact, one of my favorite quotes ever is “How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.” I didn’t get any great gifts that I would want to pass forward; however, I do believe in the power of a compliment. I say to myself “Think something nice, say something nice.” And I will randomly stop people to tell them the nice things I am thinking. Last week I got a latte from Starbucks, took a sip, thought that it tasted delicious, so I turned around and told the barista so. She was visibly moved by my compliment and it felt good for me to compliment her.
“How vain it is to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.” – I feel like that at least once a week when writing these posts! Haha… Ever since blogging for a living I’ve been glued to the dang computer and not living as much a “real” life as I used to… So my new years resolution is to get my life back again :)
The best gift is a hug and a smile: unlimited supply and everyone can afford to pass it on!
(Ain’t that the truth)
the coin-counting tubes crack me up! In reality, they’re super practical, but to be honest, I wouldn’t use them more than once a year. The Costco membership, though – what do I have to do to get relatives like yours?
Yeah, if you don’t use cash a lot you’d seldom have a need for them.
Penis air freshener: Seriously. I read this first in my email that didn’t pull in the picture. I was totally picturing one of those battery operated ones that spray a mist out of the top every half-hour or so. You can imagine what I pictured. Ha, ha.
I got all I wanted for Christmas: Nothing! Yay! People do really love me and listen to me. (Although I did have one friend send me a link to a NPR talk about “stuff culture.” It was a very thoughtful gift. She called it a ‘gift’ tongue in cheek but I really loved it!)
I’d take that gift any day of the week! Especially for Rockstar Finance :)
Costco card is an awesome re-gift. The Little Book of Common Sense Investing is also a great gift to give to someone who wants to learn more with investing. I don’t think I received anything that I’d re-gift. :)
That Costco gift membership is an awesome gift! Lucky you! That truly is the gift that keeps on giving :-)
I just had some quality time with my best girl, and I gifted myself a super awesome money chat with the infamous J$
Best Christmas Evah!
Hah! Best gift ever right there ;)
Walden is awesome! Like the author, I’m trying not to have a lot of stuff, so everyone in my family knows not to give me anything. My parents and grandma always give money and a client gave me a gift card. I had to beg the husband not to get me any’thing’, so instead we just celebrated with a dinner out.
Great! Sounds like everyone’s finally listening to you :)
My brother hates to read hard copies of books, but has really gotten into audible books. So I got him the audible book version of The Millionaire Next Door, and ordered a hard copy of it for myself. I also got him the audible book version of The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. That’s a great book for anyone to read, but I think it’s particular apt for parents of younger children.
Re: The Little Book of Common Sense Investing, I haven’t read this one, but I did order myself a copy of Bogle’s The Clash of Cultures. I was mostly motivated to buy it by both the fact that it’s on Buffet’s recommended reading list (one of modern day’s greatest investors) and written by Bogle (one of the other modern day’s greatest investors).
Great ideas!! If I was still commuting I’d totally try out audio books for sure. I think they’re great for non-readers and riders! Also agree with The Last Lecture. I’ve only seen bits and pieces of it online, and every time I’m about to shed some tears, haha… so moving and REAL.
I too got some great hand written notes which I plan to do more of next year. My family new me well and got me tons of chocolate (Lindt’s my fave).
I received a book to read that my wife had borrowed from the library. She also gave me a gift card with one day just for me to read without the kids. She is a genious :)
Yeah she is!
We just had our propane delivered and I gave him a gift card that I knew I wouldn’t use.
Haha – good idea.
Hard to tell what I’d want more: the chocolate, or the I heart my penis placard.
I used to belong to Costco….then I found out that I was spending WAY more money “saving money” at Costco than I was NOT saving money at regular grocery stores. I’m definitely horrible at budgeting when everything has an awesome price……I want it all.
Good to know about yourself!! Way to cut yourself off. I’ll have to make sure we’re paying attention to this too – though the #1 thing I’m looking forward to is all the free samples, really :) Yum!!!
I got a Soda Stream! This will help both my wallet and the environment. I am a seltzer addict.
I also got a blue tooth keyboard for my tablet, which makes my poor decision to get a tablet instead of a laptop more reasonable.
This wasn’t a Christmas gift, but my aunt gave me my grandmother’s old sewing machine at our family Christmas party. My grandmother passed 14 years ago and I’m guessing the machine is at least 30 years old, probably much older. The manual was with it and when I was flipping through it I found my grandparent’s wedding announcement clipped from the paper 65 years ago!
Wowwwww so cool!!!
And what a great thing to take over too – an antique AND something you can use too, love it :) Sew me up a shirt that says “Budgets Are Sexy” on it, will ya?
I need to get “Walden”. Right now the only way I’m getting hubby into that RV is with a ramrod! Happy New Year J. Money. Love your site! :)
haha…. thanks friend :)
put it under his pillow to read before going to bed every night!