Be gen­er­ous (with­out break­ing the bank) Faith archer on sea­sonal spend­ing

Woman & Home - - In This Issue... -

Cel­e­brat­ing Christ­mas doesn’t have to bust the bud­get. Faith Archer’s ideas will help you make it through De­cem­ber…

1 plan ahead think about how many peo­ple you need to feed. then write a shop­ping list with enough for every­one in­vited, rather than try­ing to feed an en­tire army. Re­mem­ber most shops only shut for a sin­gle day, so you don’t need more stock than a su­per­mar­ket! 2 save on stock­ings In­clude fancier ver­sions of things kids need any­way, like char­ac­ter tooth­brushes and car­toon socks.

3 Fo­cus on time to­gether Chil­dren (even quite big ones) of­ten ap­pre­ci­ate your at­ten­tion rather than a boat-load of ex­pen­sive ac­tiv­i­ties. think dec­o­rat­ing the tree to­gether, bak­ing Christ­mas bis­cuits or play­ing board games.

4 make your own wreath Check out tu­to­ri­als on youtube, then get handy with a coat hanger, conifer branches, holly, rib­bon and a few baubles. 5 get more For less Check out shops such as Fly­ing tiger and Pound­land for stylish dec­o­ra­tions at low prices. mean­while, pa­per­chains are cheer­ful and in­ex­pen­sive to make. 6 stock up For aFter christ­mas most su­per­mar­kets of­fer su­per-cheap veg­eta­bles to tempt shop­pers. last year you could get car­rots, parsnips and sprouts as low as 19p a bag. so buy ex­tra for side dishes, stews and soups after Christ­mas. 7 snap up Fes­tive oF­Fers For ex­am­ple, Ho­tel Choco­lat (ho­tel choco­ usu­ally of­fers a dis­count on a box from its “tast­ing Club” range in the run-up to Christ­mas.

8 look out For in­tro­duc­tory oF­Fers Wine clubs of­fer new cus­tomers big sav­ings. laith­waites (laith­ has 12 bot­tles for only £49.99; the sun­day times Wine Club (sun­day­timeswineclub gives £60 off your first or­der.

9 save su­per­mar­ket loy­alty points In mid-No­vem­ber, sains­bury’s has a “Dou­ble up” week. so when you buy taste the Dif­fer­ence wine, toys, en­ter­tain­ment, clothes and home­ware, the Nec­tar points you earn are worth twice as much. later, spend the points on Christ­mas food. 10 cash in on cash­back earn cash­back on your on­line shop­ping by click­ing through from web­sites like topCash­back (topcash­ and Quidco ( first. on av­er­age, topCash­back mem­bers rack up £325 over a year. take cash­back as vouch­ers and boost your earn­ings by up to 25%.

11 giFt an ex­pe­ri­ence try tick­ets for the bal­let, theatre, or cin­ema, or save on af­ter­noon tea through a web­site like buyagift ( which spe­cialises in ex­pe­ri­ences. or give mem­ber­ship of english Her­itage, the Na­tional trust or the Na­tional art Pass.

12 buy bar­gain book sets the book Peo­ple (the­bookpeo­ sell sets of books at dis­counts of up to 85%, which can be di­vided be­tween dif­fer­ent chil­dren. look out for great sav­ings on sets of story CDs too. 13 make sea­sonal ex­tras into meals so on Christ­mas eve, eat glazed gam­mon fol­lowed by mince pies, rather than of­fer­ing them on Christ­mas Day when every­one is stuffed. 14 swap to dis­count su­per­mar­kets If you’re re­laxed about brands try al­ter­na­tives at aldi and lidl. both aldi’s

£10 oliver Cromwell lon­don Dry Gin, and lidl’s £15.99 Hor­tus ar­ti­san lon­don Dry Gin, have been named among the best in the world. w&h

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