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Old 12-08-2019, 05:09 PM   #1
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Christmas spending - Is there a limit?

Every year I watch my wife as she goes on a bender, accumulating Christmas gifts for both family and friends alike. I didn’t mind this obsession when we were running our business, but now we’re retired and living on a fixed income.

We’re not poor by any means, but we have a growing RV to support, and I know she’s going to need toys as she grows. When she gets a little older, I know she’ll want a new set of wheels to roll around town on. I mean, which of us didn’t?

Wouldn’t it be shortsighted to think she won’t want the best electronics available too? Every generation looks at the previous and wonders how they got along with that old flip-phone or bulky laptop. And what kind of apparel does a young RV need while making the transition to adulthood?

Eventually old age will catch up and she’ll need more preventative care. Perhaps an extended Medicare program, configured around her most immediate needs. Most likely there will be hospital stays while recouping from whatever ailment she falls victim to.

So, I’m thinking of asking my wife to tone it down a bit. Maybe start a college fund with some of that cash? But before I face the wrath of a fanatical Christmas spender, I thought I’d get some input from the forum.

Children/Grandchildren aside, who all do you guys/gals buy for at Christmas? And is there a $$$ limit that you abide by?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 12-08-2019, 05:21 PM   #2
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limits are a function of so many variables that there is no universal limit.

A financial limit (guideline) in retirement is roughly 4% of your next egg per year so if you can live within that, then you have to decide how to distribute it. But then, there are variables to that....if I knew I was gonna die in a year I would blow a bunch on the bucket list!!!
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Old 12-08-2019, 05:23 PM   #3
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We used to spend a crap ton of money on our kids at christmas every year. A few months later we would have to clean out their room for more stuff and inevitably would find gifts that were unused unopened. It took a while but we finally broke the habit and now don't really even buy gifts. The kids are now grown and nobody really even cares we just enjoy each others company without the stress of finding "needed" items that no one really needs. We could have easily paid for our bus with the money we wasted on christmas over the years.
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Old 12-08-2019, 06:50 PM   #4
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Personally I was never a big spender on gifts, and also asked family friends not to buy me anything. If I want/need something I buy it.
When I first started dating my current wife she somehow got the idea that I was an endless supply of money. On our first Christmas she got it in her head she was going to buy her dad a new TV (note>>she did not have a job at the time). At that point I laid down the law, no extravagant gifts. We've pretty much kept that mantra.

Now I'm pretty much a scrooge so buying gifts is a mute point to me, besides, I just built my wife a new house, why would I buy gifts.
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Old 12-08-2019, 06:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jacwjames View Post
Personally I was never a big spender on gifts, and also asked family friends not to buy me anything. If I want/need something I buy it.
When I first started dating my current wife she somehow got the idea that I was an endless supply of money. On our first Christmas she got it in her head she was going to buy her dad a new TV (note>>she did not have a job at the time). At that point I laid down the law, no extravagant gifts. We've pretty much kept that mantra.

Now I'm pretty much a scrooge so buying gifts is a mute point to me, besides, I just built my wife a new house, why would I buy gifts.
You built your wife a house, you don't live there?
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Old 12-08-2019, 08:09 PM   #6
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We really do not exchange gifts anymore. Just family and friend time works for us.
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Old 12-08-2019, 11:33 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Squerly View Post
Children/Grandchildren aside, who all do you guys/gals buy for at Christmas? And is there a $$$ limit that you abide by?

Thanks in advance!
I buy gifts for my nieces and nephews. I have a strict $40 limit.


Kids get so many expensive gifts that they lose their meaning. They are fun for a week, then they get stuffed in a closet never to be used again. With the $40 hard limit, you have to put some thought into the gifts. You can't just go out and them the latest new cell phone. It kinda forces you into getting better gifts, or even making things if you've got the skill to do it.
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Old 12-09-2019, 12:44 PM   #8
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You built your wife a house, you don't live there?

I live in the house, but it's her house.



I figure I've got Christmas covered for the rest of my life
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