Gifts can become an expensive cost for you when you are trying to live on one income. Throughout the year we tend to spend on birthday gifts, anniversary gifts, and Christmas gifts. Then there are different events in our life like weddings, house warmings, and dinners at friends’ homes that we also buy gifts for. Not to mention things like gifts for teachers, our mailman and our babysitters. Many of these gift-buying occasions you may not be able to avoid, but the one gift you don’t need to spend money on is for each other, your partner in life.
I know, maybe that is the one person you truly want to buy for, but if you are on a budget and living on one income, it definitely is one gift you shouldn’t have to buy, and one area where you can save some money.
My husband and I bought each other a gift the first Christmas we were dating. He bought me a sweater (picked out by his sisters, so not even really from him) and I couldn’t even tell you what I bought him, don’t remember, and I’m sure my husband doesn’t remember either. From then on, we agreed to never buy each other a gift. If we really felt we wanted something, we would go and purchase it ourself. We haven’t looked back, and it’s made it the easiest time when it comes to Valentine’s Day, Christmas and birthdays. Not to mention the amount we have saved not buying the gifts that never see the light of day afterward because my husband really didn’t need that ninth Polo shirt and I didn’t need that umpteenth purse. Believe me, our marriage is fine too. If you read Psychology Today, they might have you believe otherwise, but I’m here to tell you that after 27 years of marriage, 28 later this year, we don’t miss buying each other a gift one bit, and on our 28th anniversary, there won’t be a gift either.
I can’t even calculate the amount we have saved by not buying each other gifts. It must be in the thousands by now. Living on one income means doing without spending on certain items and this is one easy way that you can accomplish that.
I love the sentiment expressed by Mandi in her post on Level Up House entitled Why my husband and I quit giving gifts to each other. She says, “By buying things when you need them instead of when our gift-saturated culture tells you to buy them, you’re dropping out of the insanity that our culture creates around holidays and birthdays.”
Drop out of the “insanity” and instead give each other the gift of time. It may sound corny, but spend some time with each other and your children, or do something for one another that you don’t usually do. I’m the one who usually makes all the meals but I so appreciate and love when my husband steps in and makes dinner and does the dishes to boot! Or, I really appreciate when he goes grocery shopping, leaving me time to do something I want to do. These little things of time mean more to me than a gift that I may or may not use. When I want that perfume or those earrings, I buy it myself and love it because it’s something I chose that I know I’ll like.
This is one area you can save on one income. It may seem a small way to save some money, but over the long run, it has saved my husband and myself a ton of money and we don’t miss the gifts one bit.