In our family, we have a rather dubious tradition on Thanksgiving Day of ‘running’ the Turkey Triathlon, which involves the three events of: eating entirely too much, watching NFL football, and pouring over the ‘sale papers’ (for the rest of you, those are the five metric tons of advertisements in the Thanksgiving Day newspapers in anticipation of Black Friday).
This year, we are cutting way back on Christmas shopping. Our medical bills are still a big strain on our credit cards and have showed little sign of easing. (Regardless of what Mary thinks about her hospital stay, all three of us have contributed a lot to the medical debt for this year.) All the adults in the family decided not to buy for each other this year. It’s not like we need anything anyway, well except for someone to pay for our medical bills. I often do shopping for my little business on Black Friday since office stuff is usually way cheaper, but I’m not doing that this year either. We’re still buying for the nieces and nephews, but that’s it.
Below, I’m going to give you some suggestions on better things to do with your holiday dollars.
One tradition we won’t give up regardless of the economy is sponsoring children who are in our local guardian ad litem program, which essentially means that the children’s parents are either absent, abusive, or otherwise unable or unfit to care for their children and someone is appointed by the courts to look after the children’s interests and well-being. Often the children stay with a close relative while all this is going on, and it’s common for those relatives to seek and eventually get custody of the children.