Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tips for a frugal Easter

Easter is only days away, and I'm busy dyeing eggs and filling baskets.  With all the cute bunny and chick stuff out there, it would be easy to go overboard, and over budget, on Easter. However, with a bit of planning and creativity, it's possible to have a nice Easter celebration without spending a lot of money.

To save money on the holiday meal:
  • Have a potluck meal.  Even if you aren't having a potluck meal and someone offers to bring a dish, accept their offer! 
  • Rotate holidays--if you had Easter last year, find someone else to take a turn.
  • Host an Easter brunch rather than a formal dinner (breakfast foods are a lot cheaper).
  • If you must go out to eat, save money by moving your celebration to Saturday instead of Sunday.
To save money on baskets:
  • Don't go nuts on toys/candy/trinkets for the kids.  I'm limiting myself to $10.00 per basket. 
  • Don't worry about fillers like that plastic Easter grass. It's messy and unnecessary. 
  • Right after Easter, all the baskets, fillers and Easter-themed stuff will go on sale.  Think ahead to Easter 2012 as you peruse the clearance racks, and get what you need (and only what you need) at a steep discount. 

I got the Little Guy and Little Miss's basket at 90% off after last Easter for a cost of $0.99 each. The bunny ears were also 90% off, making them only $0.19.  Score!

The contents of the baskets all came from the Dollar Spot at Target. Seriously, whoever created that thing is a genius! 

I'll round out their baskets with fruit snacks (for the Little Guy) and fun crackers (for Little Miss).

To save money on entertainment:
  • Look for free/cheap community events featuring the Easter bunny and egg hunts.
  • Focus on activities (decorating eggs, making garlands, baking desserts) as a family rather than paying big bucks for passive entertainment.
  • Combine resources with friends/neighbors to have a large-scale Easter egg hunt. 
Happy Easter planning!

PS. Did you know that I'm available for public speaking?  Neither did I!  As it turns out, I am able and willing to speak with community groups.  Kaneland WINS invited me to speak at their meeting today, and they got an abbreviated version of my "Live Well, Spend Less" class.  Thanks to Kaneland WINS for a fun lunch!  I hope you all enjoyed it as much as I did.

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