Money. Minimalism. Motherhood.
Savvy tips to help you save money, declutter your home, spend time outdoors and thrive in your season.

Christmas is coming

Christmas can be a magical time of year.

There is a buzz in the air. Children are excited for Christmas concerts, Carols by Candlelight, Christmas lights and of course presents.

Most of us look forward to some well-deserved time off. It is a chance to celebrate the end of year and spend time with family and friends.

For a number of people though, Christmas can be an incredibly stressful time. Our reality is not what the cards and movies portray. Money is tight. We feel pressure to spend cash on gifts, events and food. We feel pressure to do more and give more.

Often we feel that we need to exchange presents with family who we rarely see. The whole tradition of gift-giving can seem pointless and a waste of money, especially if you don’t know what to get them. Even the idea of Kris Kringle for work colleagues, friends or our children’s classmates is just another thing to think about. It’s not just the financial burden but another item to add to our mental load.

We hear people joking about men heading to the shops at 4pm on Christmas Eve to do their shopping. This actually just makes me cross. Why do they get away with buying a couple of presents whilst their wives and partners are expected to take care of the rest? Why does the majority of the logistics and planning fall to the woman?

As you approach Christmas this year, perhaps it’s worth considering if we need to do all the things. Do we need to attend all of the events? Do we need to do gift exchanges with everyone in our life?

Maybe your friends and family are feeling the pinch but are hesitant to say anything. They don’t want to rock the boat of what has always been done. They don’t want to cause conflict or look like they are cheap.

Imagine the difference between doing less and spending less at Christmas could bring. Imagine what time, energy and money this would free up. Imagine how this would impact our impact on the environment if we reduced our consumption.

Maybe it’s too late to change anything for this year. That’s okay. If you have a few moments, put a reminder in your phone to start the conversation earlier next year, before the Christmas season begins. Take some time to have important conversations with those closest to you. Consider how things could be done differently moving forward.

Christmas shouldn’t have to be another stress in our lives. Maybe it can look different to how it has always been.

Christmas is coming,

all is merry and bright,

really it just means 

that money is tight.

So many to buy for,

so much to spend,

‘why do we do this?’

I whinge to my friend. 

Why do we feel pressured

to shop til we drop,

where is the line,

when does it stop?

Do we even remember 

what we were gifted last year?

Why waste our energy, 

make our cash disappear?

With the cost of living

and times being tough,

we need to start saying,

enough is enough.

Our homes are bursting 

at the seams with excess,

what we need isn’t more,

we simply need less.

In January thrift shops will 

be filled to the brim,

we’ll dump and donate

on the way to the gym.

It’s time for a change,

we need a conversation,

stop pressure to buy

out of obligation.

Presence not presents

is needed this year,

eyes up from our phones,

will bring Christmas cheer.

Melanie Wegener

Here is the original post on Instagram.

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