Linda Chavey writes about how to change your lifestyle habits in order to eliminate debt.
There is no better time to get prepared for the holidays than NOW.
Budgeting for the holidays is key. Decide how much you would like to spend on each person on your list.
Making gifts, especially edible items is a great way to save $$$. These gifts are unique and useful. There are many articles on the internet that offer homemade ideas and low-cost gift alternatives.
Try to limit how many gifts you are buying for non-family members. After all, the holidays are a time to celebrate; not go into debt.
Let your friends and non-family members know in advance of your intentions. If someone gets upset with you because you did not get them a gift, I would explain the situation. (reduction in debt, change in lifestyle, etc.) Also let them know that you enjoy having them as a friend but would like to limit your expenditures. Hopefully, if they are a true friend, they will understand your reasoning.
Gifts should be from the heart; not just something you buy to give someone.