Celebrate Thanksgiving Joyfully While Keeping Your Wallet Intact

Posted By: Family Credit Management | Friday November 17, 2023

As Thanksgiving approaches, the excitement of reuniting with family and friends fills the air. However, it can also be a time when budgets are stretched to their limits, and debt looms on the horizon as the holiday season swings into full gear. Before you begin to panic, Family Credit Management is here to help you host a memorable Thanksgiving dinner while keeping your finances in check!

Embracing the Thanksgiving Spirit 

Thanksgiving is a time for personal reflection and spreading thoughts of peace. Many American families have cherished traditions during this season, whether they involve football, hunting, or holiday shopping. But no matter what your Thanksgiving Day entails, it all centers around one crucial element – the grand feast. So, let's start there.

The Feast Begins! 

To kick things off, set a budget for your Thanksgiving dinner and make a commitment to stick to it. While this might sound easier said than done, taking a proactive approach to your budget now will make it easier to navigate the upcoming holiday festivities. You can host an incredible dinner without cooking everything yourself. Here's how to keep your meal budget friendly:

1. Delegate Dishes: When you send out your invitations, assign each guest a dish to bring. Whether it's salads, veggies, appetizers, or drinks, involving your guests not only keeps food costs down but also shares the joy of meal preparation.

2. Even Non-Cooks Can Contribute: For those guests who aren't inclined to cook, you can count on them for rolls, napkins, drinks, or packaged desserts.

3. Kid-Crafted Decor: Instead of splurging on expensive table settings, encourage the kiddos at your Thanksgiving gathering to unleash their creativity. Let them craft centerpieces and placemats with crayons and construction paper, and teach them the art of drawing "hand turkeys." It's a fun and budget-friendly way to decorate and will create priceless memories!

4. BYOB (Bring Your Own Beverage): Alcoholic beverages can be a significant expense. If your guests plan to indulge, suggest they bring their preferred adult drinks.

5. Plan for Leftovers: After hosting a feast of this magnitude, you'll have leftovers for days. Invest in a larger turkey, ham, and bags of potatoes. Consider buying tortillas for easy and cost-effective leftover snacks and lunches.

6. Skip Costly Sides: Not every side needs to be fancy or gourmet; in fact, it’s often the simplest of comfort foods that are the biggest crowd pleasers. Instead of busting your budget on a cheese board, go for a tray of good, old fashioned mac and cheese. It’s a classic for a reason and pleases family and friends of all ages!

Budget-Friendly Entertainment Ideas: 

Depending on your family's traditions, you may find yourself entertaining guests for a day, a weekend, or even an entire week. It's easy for your wallet to cringe at the thought, but fear not, we have budget-friendly ideas to keep everyone entertained.

1. Outdoor Quality Time: Engage in a family football game or take a leisurely nature walk. It's a chance to burn off holiday calories while spending quality time together, and it's free!

2. Craft Holiday Decorations: Spend a little on craft supplies to create memorable decorations. Consider making popcorn strings or other simple ornaments to decorate your Christmas tree, a fun and affordable activity that yields lasting memories.

3. Selfie Shopping: Window shopping during the holiday season can be entertaining. Explore malls and plazas without the pressure to purchase gifts. Make it a contest to see who can take the silliest selfies with holiday displays.

4. Volunteer: Make a meaningful impact by volunteering at soup kitchens, homeless shelters, animal shelters, churches, or other local organizations. It's a fulfilling way to spend the day without spending money.

5. Rekindle Vintage Entertainment: Remember the days when card games, board games, or dice games provided hours of fun? Dust off those classics and create new memories with timeless entertainment.

At Family Credit Management, our mission is to empower you with money-saving insights and resources to navigate your finances during the holiday season and all year round. Need more personalized assistance? Reach out to our credit counseling team today. 

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