Budget Christmas ChallengeIt’s time for the Budget Christmas Challenge #2!

If you haven’t joined the Budget Christmas Challenge yet, you can read about it here. Be sure to also look back and complete Christmas Challenge #1!

This challenge may take a lot of time for those of you who purchase items throughout the year. Those of you who have not done that will have an easy challenge day!

This challenge is to go through your gift box and find out who on your list you already have items for. Don’t worry if you are behind! There are lots of deals before Christmas and I will be posting them for you. At the end of each week I have been posting the Budget Christmas Challenge edition of the Thrifty Thursday Deal roundup. All the deals are broken down into who you are buying for. You will catch up soon.

I was rather surprised at the amount of items I have for Christmas already. I do try to have half of my list done before Thanksgiving and half of the rest of the list done on Black Friday. I’m not quite at my 50% mark, but I am close. Below you can find the result of my Challenge #2.

WARNING – if I am getting you a gift, please do not read any further!!! It will ruin the surprise. I decided that I can’t do an effective Christmas Challenge without sharing everything with my readers (including the items that I buy).

In the Christmas Challenge #1 I figured out that I had thirty people to shop for. I remembered that I had to add 2 more to that so I have a total of 32 now. I have eleven people finished and I am on my way to finishing my hubby and son (I tend to continue to pick things up for them if I see items so I never really “close” their gift list until we are closer to Christmas). Here is what I have so far:

Gift #1 = 3 Far Side Books. I actually picked these up at a garage sale. That is hard to do, but I lucked out. One of the people on my list loves Far Side and these books appeared to have been gifted and never even opened. The retail value is $34.85 and I paid $0.75.

Gift #2 = A DVD Spiderman Game. I bought a bunch of toys from Amazon right before Christmas last year to use this year. I ended up with $93 in toys for $1.94. You can see how I did that at this post. The retail value is $16.99 and I paid $0.36.

Gift #3 = “My Little Showcase of Noah’s Ark”. This is a book set about Noah’s ark along with a magnetic board that you can write on and wipe off with animal magnets. I bought a lot of books in March from a clearance sale at School Specialty. You can see how I did that at this post. I also found a beautiful Personalized Cross at a dollar store for this person!! The retail value is $24.94 and I paid $1.60.

Gift #4 & 5 = These are the same. Both have a set of 6 “By Air, Sea, and Land” books, a Battle of Jerico Card game, a Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat card game, and a set of 7 Bible Story books. The retail value for each is $32.85 and I paid $8.95.

Gift #6 = I managed to trade services in exchange for a new Gerber hooded towel and washcloth set which I am going to pair with some baby oil, shampoo, and lotion that I got free after coupons. The retail value is $21.96 and I paid nothing.

Gift #7 = Electronic Phase 10 from the Amazon deal. The retail value is $17.99 and I paid $0.38.

Gift #8 = Clue Express game from the Amazon deal. The retail value is $12.99 and I paid $0.27.

Gift #9 = 3 Bath and Body Works antibacterial pump lotion soaps I got for free with a coupon at the start of the year. 3 bottles of nailpolish that I also got for free after coupons and drugstore deals. The retail value is $32.94 and I paid nothing.

Gift #10 = 3 Littlest Pet Shop sets that I found at a dollar store and a silver bracelet set from fashion bug that I bought for 96% off a couple months ago when they had their $10/$10 including clearance sale. The retail value is $30.97 and I paid $3.40.

Gift #11 = A Lip balm making kit that I traded for and a silver bracelet set from Torrid that I bought when they had their $10/$10 including clearance coupon. The retail value is $24.99 and I paid $0.40.

SUMMARY = Eleven people down, Twenty-One people to go (I do have parts of some of these gifts). I have spent $25.06 so far and the retail value of the gifts is $294.32. So far I have saved 91% on my Christmas shopping. The first group of gifts tend to be my best deals since I have had all year to find them.

Stay tuned for Christmas Challenge #3. If you completed this challenge then be sure to get your extra entry into the first Christmas Challenge Giveaway!

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Salinda October 26, 2009 at 5:02 pm

I shop for Christmas all year long also. Imagine my surprise when we made our lists and discovered we only have 6 more people to buy for!!! Hooray!


2 BabiesandBargains October 26, 2009 at 6:52 pm


I did this as well. I have to finish up the kids, shop for DH, get uncle a ornament, cousin a gift card, and FIL!!


3 I am Lee-Ann... October 26, 2009 at 10:01 pm
4 Laura October 26, 2009 at 10:51 pm

wow! I am inspired!! thanks for the great post!


5 Serendipity is Sweet October 27, 2009 at 12:58 pm

That's pretty amazing! I have several gifts as we did a family photo shoot last summer and are giving portraits to many family members, but I still need frames. I was planning on hitting Michaels with a 40% off coupon. We did pay a small fortune for the photos though, but we had not done family photos in years so we just went for it.

I could really use all your tips for kid shopping though! We haven't started that.


6 Nicola October 27, 2009 at 2:53 pm

I have started, but really only finished my kids (which is a huge accomplishment).
I try to start early in the early summer, but this year it didn't work out. Also the other kids I buy for, are very specific on what they want, which means when I find out what they want I have to hunt online for the best deal.
I also got a free $150 antiquities package for selling 15 sittings for my MOPs fundraiser….these will make awesome gifts for family just for the price of the frame.


7 busy mom October 28, 2009 at 3:36 pm

I have a little more than I thought I had. I am still waiting on a wii bundle deal – I saw that etoys has a wii for 199.99 . do you think there will be any better deals in nov.?
oh yeah , mp3 for my hubby and teen. I still need.


8 structure settlement October 28, 2009 at 6:44 pm

hello buddy.

sorry i'm late to replay bcos i'm very busy to got more information about settlement' so very appreciate your trade services business.. good luck using your business and entrecard.. thanks for visiting my blog and leaving your very positive comment..



9 busy mom October 28, 2009 at 8:02 pm

I had saved a necklace ( clearance item) and 2 girls gifts like the they can make their own cookies or ice cream I think they were areound $4.?? on sale . I was going back to get them today and on amazon the prices had already went up or sold out.
I just got so busy with her birthday party and then yesterday she was not feeling the best . I had forgotten about it until today.

* note to self – don't wait next time.


10 Nicola October 29, 2009 at 2:33 am

I forgot that I am also making the "grandma's" a scrabble tile necklace. Total cost is under $2 a piece.


11 Mommy Kennedy October 29, 2009 at 4:59 pm

Oh no! This could be hard for me as I have presents stashed all over the place! Oops! better get on this soon!


12 LittlePeopleWealth October 31, 2009 at 6:29 pm

You're welcome Laura 🙂 Everybody's challenge #2 posts look great!

Kid shopping seems to come naturally to me – my parents did foster care since I was in grade school so I got used to buying lots of kid gifts in case we had kids around at Christmas. She did too so that they would have plenty under the tree in the case of a short notice.

Older kids are tougher since they usually want specific things. Black friday is great for that – and so are rewards programs.

I think there will be a better deal on the Wii 🙂

The scrabble necklaces sound cute – if you get a chance email me the instructions 🙂


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