The true cost of Christmas

According to reports, the average British Family are going to spend in excess of £800 on Christmas, with almost a quarter of those spending more than they can afford (link).

The TV commercials are full of festive cheer……. spending, gambling, and borrowing, with loans attracting interest of 1200% plus.

A lot of people think I’m a Scrooge, and that’s OK.
scrooge duck
I make no bones about it, having been on the merry-go-round of spending more than I could afford and then taking a year to pay for it.
And for what?
Piles of discarded gifts amongst the wrappings (some referred to as ‘junk’) by ungrateful sods who were more interested in comparisons in volume.
Then there were the Family members (not mine) who invited themselves to my table, ate my food, drank my wine, belched and farted all afternoon without so much as an offer of help with the washing up, then after a snorefilled snooze (in quadruplicate) awoke to demand what was for tea.
Partner of the time was also an ungrateful swine, not even acknowledging the gift I had bought him, which had cost me over a week’s wages, and even then he wasn’t satisfied.

Don’t do it.
It’s not worth the unhappiness, stress and worry of paying for it, trying to get everything just so, trying to please everyone, working yourself ragged, all for the sake of a few hours.
Christmas should not be about the money, what you give, or what you get, but sadly that seems to be the norm in society today.

Hubby and I have TERRIFIC Christmases, and they don’t cost a fortune. We send cards and gifts to those that matter, visiting if we can. If not, then it’s a long distance phone call.
OK, it’s only the two of us (or 3 if we’re with MOH) and the dog, but we have a tree, put up trimmings, have a traditional dinner, and exchange small gifts.

Digital CameraI’ve written about it before, so if you’re at a loss, broke, or just want some fun at Christmas, please check out these earlier posts for some ideas.
Many people are in the same boat, and instead of trying to better each other in cost, get together and share it.
Christmas Past
Adults Only
Christmas Shopping

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! In November 2020, we lost our beloved Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney. We now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of Kizzy, my GSD when Hubby and I first met so had hers done too. On February 24th 2022 we were blessed to find Maya, a 13 week old GSD pup who has made her own place in our hearts. You can follow our training methods, photos and her growth in my blog posts. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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23 Responses to The true cost of Christmas

  1. I so agree with you. I had posted about my happiness in not having to do the whole work place exchange since retirement. That was a waste of money. I know the stuff I got went out the back door! I am not sure how it all got to be this way. It wasn’t when I was a kid. I got a few gifts but they were always practical and appreciated and affordable. One year my mother bought me a doll and made the clothes herself. I still treasure that and am amazed at her handwork. So move over Scrooge, you have a friend!

  2. Howto$tuffYourPig says:

    Christmas shouldn’t be about how much a person buys anyway. I agree that the stress just isn’t worth it. I think the real focus should be on time spent with family.

  3. I decided years ago that I would not go into debt to buy stuff people would probably only re-gift anyway. I do buy one small gift (usually a gift card) for each of my children and their spouses/boyfriends and for my husband and mother-in-law. I don’t decorate much – just a small tree and a few holiday knickknacks. But the best part of Christmas for me is hosting a Christmas morning brunch for anyone who is able to come. We have all have a wonderful time.

    • Now that is the kind of Christmas get-together that makes it so special. I remember the year we all went to Mum and Dad for dinner and there were 15 of us, so had to do it in two shifts (squirty cream anyone?) 🙂

  4. Tara R. says:

    Since our kids are both adults now, Christmas gifts tend to be more things they need than things that will be put aside after a few weeks.

  5. It sort of goes along with people having perfect Christmas trees – when did that happen? I love my mismatched tree with ornaments that have some meaning to my husband, me or us. The fancy tree isn’t really for you, but for others who will see it.

  6. scifihammy says:

    I totally agree with you. I just wish I could cancel the whole thing!

    • Oh I love Christmas, it’s all the hype that goes with it I detest, and the timing…. ads too early, too expensive, the Must Have gifts. It’s profiteering, nothing else.

  7. Capt Jill says:

    Christmas has definitely become too commercialized, they start with it here even before Halloween now!

    • Yep. It’s all wrong. At the moment I am getting REALLY cheesed off with the adverts between programs on TV (novelty with house sitting). They are showing the SAME one at least twice in every commercial break. The mute switch is wearing out!

      • Capt Jill says:

        not worth watching TV, my friend has something that will automatically skip the commercials when it records, then she watches later

      • We haven’t had TV for almost 9 years, and have no intention of getting one again.

      • Capt Jill says:

        I still have mine but hardly ever turn it on

      • Do you have such a thing as a TV licence? Here in the UK, we have to have one which is about £150 a year…… another reason for not wanting one when there was so little of interest to us.

      • Capt Jill says:

        not sure what you mean by a TV license. I have ‘cable’, its actually satellite dish. When I got it, it was about $30/month, now its about $80/month. Most people here spend MUCH more! You can get by with just an antenna and could watch just ‘free’ TV, but that will only get you about 3-4 channels. There is also some new antenna ‘box’ which I hear will cost about $150 for equipment and then figure out how to install it, afterwards you can get most channels ‘free’. I’ve thought about getting that but never have got around to it, mostly because I don’t have an outside antenna and don’t really feel like climbing up on the roof to put one in. I really ought to just cancel the whole thing, it costs a LOT of money considering the fact that I’m almost never home to watch TV in the first place and then theres almost never anything on I want to watch in the 2nd.

      • It doesn’t matter if you have a cable or freeview TV or not, just being able to receive programs be it on a TV set or computer, as they are broadcast means you have to pay a licence fee (money for the BBC).

      • Capt Jill says:

        wow, that sucks! even worse than here

      • Rumour has it in order to raise more revenue, it is intended to add this Licence Fee to our local tax (council tax), so even if we haven’t got a TV, we will still have to pay! I’m going to hit the roof if they try it and write to everyone in authority!!

  8. Reblogged this on pensitivity101 and commented:

    As Christmas is on the tongues on many (and the shelves of many more) I’ll really spoil your day and say The Big One is only 121 days away.
    Thought I’d repost this (Sue Vincent has done something similar which preceeds this post) in the hope that maybe readers will get some ideas that won’t cost a fortune and still have fun at the appropriate time.

  9. colinandray says:

    We have a very frugal/economical Christmas. My kids put no value on gifts. They just want to know that they are often in my mind (they both live 2500 miles away), and Christmas is the ultimate test! My only habit that costs a little, is I always sponsor a family to ensure that they get a Christmas dinner, and sufficient money to buy their kids some small gifts. This is done through a local church Mission.

    My Christmas ‘s are quiet, very enjoyable, do not put me into debt… and very emotionally rewarding. I cannot think think how that could be improved! 🙂

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