7 Reasons Why You Should Start Thinking about Holiday Christmas Gifts Now

It is the beginning of August, and outside you may be faced with 90 degree temperatures.  Why start thinking about Christmas now, 4.5 months ahead of time?

If you would like to have a frugal Christmas, now is the perfect time to start laying your plans.  Here are some things you can begin doing to have a low cost Christmas:

Keep a close eye on deal sites.  Some of my favorite deal sites are Mamasource (formerly Mamapedia), Groupon, and Juice in the City.  Keep an eye out for deals that may make great holiday gifts such as a Groupon to a friend’s favorite restaurant or a spa visit for a relative.

Start the crafts now.  If you are planning on making anything homemade, don’t wait until the last minute; get started now.  One year I cross-stitched my mom a large Santa Claus carrying gifts.  This year, I plan on making my son this fold and go organizer.  For my daughters, I am making this cute alphabet mat.  I am also going to make some real vanilla for baking, and that takes several months of resting time before it acquires a strong enough flavor.

Watch restaurant.com for a 90% off special.  Very rarely, restaurant.com offers their certificates at 90% off.  Now is the time to keep watch on the site.  If you know of someone who loves to eat out, you could get certificates for as low as $1 with the 90% off discount, or you could choose to get them the certificate of the month club.

Buy extra back to school supplies.  Paper, pens, notebooks, crayons, etc. can be dirt cheap during the back to school season.  If you have kids who love writing or coloring or crafting, stock up on the cheap supplies now and save them for Christmas.  This will probably delight smaller children and will only cost you a few pennies.

Buy back to school clothes on clearance.  In another month or two, all of the unsold back to school clothing will be on clearance.  You can buy your kids new clothes for a fraction of the price.

Peruse books on Paperback Swap.  I got my son several books for his birthday from Paperback Swap, which he loved.  I am now in the process of looking through my house for any books I don’t want so I can put them on Paperback Swap to earn credits to buy my son more books for Christmas.  His birthday books came in excellent condition, so I am planning to do this again for Christmas.

Start redeeming Swagbucks for gift certificates.  When you redeem Swagbucks for a gift card, it takes 10 to 14 days to appear in your account.  In addition, if you want to use your Swagbucks on Amazon, the best way to maximize your points is to spend on $5 Amazon gift cards, yet there is a limit to how many you can order weekly.  Plus, you will need time to place your order on Amazon and receive the gift.  Now is the time to start converting Swagbucks.

There are plenty of ways to have a frugal, enjoyable gift giving holiday, but most of the strategies require that you plan ahead, often months in advance.  Now is the perfect time to get started on holiday shopping and crafts, even though the cold winter months are far from your mind right now.

I shared this post at Frugal Friday.


  1. Ugh. It’s so hard for me to start thinking about Christmas before November. 😉 I think part of it is that I don’t have kids. So depending on what my husband and I plan to do, we have just hand full of people to buy for. These are great tips, though. Maybe I will get a head start this year.

  2. I always keep an eye out for gifts all year. If I see something that is perfect for someone than I pick it up. The item is usually cheaper because I am getting it off season. I have also found Groupon and other deal sites to make great gifts.

  3. We don’t do gifts for Christmas, but we do shop year round for birthdays/anniversaries. Not having to shop during the peak season itself gives us a good saving.

    • Excellent point. I used to shop year round for my mom’s gifts, but ultimately, she would want to return something, and it was past the 60 days to return it.

  4. Hadn’t heard of Paperback Swap. Good find!

  5. Thanks for the post. I have been thinking of gifts a lot lately. I have four kids and all 4 have birthdays between August and January, plus there is Christmas too! I have been trying to save up Amazon giftcards through various sources to pay for some of the presents, but I would like to make some gifts too. I really like your fold and go organizer link.

  6. I’m about 75% done. I didn’t know there was a limit on Swag Bucks. Thanks for the tip.

  7. I had to laugh because we are making vanilla as a gift for several people for Christmas. This year we are doing cooking baskets for the parents as well as my brother and his wife. They will be filled with homemade goddies like vanilla and vanilla sugar. My husband is making gourmet marshmallows( for the nephews) and some other things like jams and applesauces. Our family has agreed to give the gift of talents this year so it will be fun to see what creative things we get.

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