Staying frugal over the holidays

Winner of the Frugal Living Tip of the Month Contest for December, iVillager bigmomma66092.

The holidays are one of the most difficult times for maintaining a frugal lifestyle. The comfort of family and friends makes us want to give a great deal, sometimes more than we can afford! Read on as Frugal Living Winner bigmomma66092 shares her special moments with fellow iVillagers, and how sometimes a free hug and smile are more rewarding than any gift. The winner of the contest was iVillager bigmomma66092.

Enter the Frugal Living Tip of the Month Contest.

My favorite gifts are always those made from the heart. At home we love to make goodies with the perfect ingredients and taste; they even have to look good.

Scents make for a lovely holiday, you can bring romance and the Christmas scent to the air with candles and a bit of cinnamon burning in the crock pot. It's also important to have a clean house, with subtle but merry decorations that aren't too overpowering.

We always make extra treats like hot cocoa and candy canes for guests and for when we visit other homes; sometimes we bring them gifts and cards as well. But none of these come close to the meaningful (and free) smiles, laughter and hugs!

This season I'm going to sing at a nursing home, and I'm bringing some of my homemade goodies for the elderly. I make them frugally, but I know they are worth a lot more to the people who receive them.

Spending time with the kids, playing games and baking treats, and reading The Night Before Christmas out loud are all part of how I spend my frugal holiday. It's so important that we enjoy each other's company as a family.

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