Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Giving on a Budget - Part Two

Earlier in the week I posted Part One of this series. If you missed it, click HERE.
These are some more ideas for giving when you are on a tight budget:

Sign up for This is another great site for saving on gift certificates, although it is limited to restaurants. You can get $25 certificates for only $10….or wait for their big sales (which happen all the time) and get certificates for $1-$2. Be sure to read fine print – depending on the restaurant, there is usually a minimum purchase and the certificate doesn’t cover tax and tip. Still a great deal for some fine dining!

Blog for Books. I signed up with BookSneeze, which is a book review site that allows you to review books for free when you publish your reviews to your blog and a retailer’s website. This helps the author/publisher market the books as well as gauge the interests of their audience. And the best part is that it’s free! I will often choose a book I know a family member or friend would like to read. Once I post the review, I gift the book.

Get on mailing lists (and email lists) for department stores.  I am always getting coupons by mail or by email from various stores. Not every coupon is worth using, but I’ve learned to wait for the good ones. JCPenney will periodically mail out a $10 off $10 coupon. For my birthday, Victoria’s Secret sent me a $10 gift card. Sephora Beauty Insider sent me a coupon for free body wash on my birthday. Bath and Body Works frequently issues coupons for free full-size items with any purchase. Some of these places, I do not shop at for myself very often. But free body sprays, lotions, bath gels are perfect for gifts!

Use gift cards and gifts you receive. I debated about this one because I don’t want to come off as ungrateful. I sincerely appreciate and value every gift I receive. However, I believe I am blessed to be a blessing…that’s a cyclical statement. I believe when we bless someone, we will be blessed in return. But sometimes, God gives us a blessing for the purpose of passing it on to others.

If I receive something I do not need or just cannot use, I try to consider someone who can use it. To me this is better than letting a gift sit unused. There are also times I receive cash or a gift card, and I will use a part of it to purchase gifts for someone else. I love being able to say, I have enough and now I really want to give to someone. It’s a joy!

There are so many other ways to give without hurting the budget like making gifts, baking a treat, gathering produce from your garden, offering your skills to someone (cooking, cleaning, babysitting). Get creative!

What are some ways you are able to stretch the giving budget? I’d like to know!


kristina said... Reply to Comment

Sometimes you can find brand new items with tags still in place at garage sales. These can often make great gifts. You still get them new at a much lower price :) I agree with you in shopping ahead of time and not waiting until the last minute. That has been a huge help for us in the past.

Valerie said... Reply to Comment

@kristinaThat's a great tip Kristina! I haven't been motivated enough to try out garage sales, but definitely something I want to do sometime. I know you always find amazing deals when you are out looking. :) Thanks for sharing!