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Frugal Gift Ideas for the Holiday Season

During the 2008 holiday season, many consumers are trying to be a bit more conservative with their spending than they were last year. They have a good reason to be careful because of the credit crisis and unstable economy. However, we still wish to celebrate the holiday and give gifts to our loved ones. Here are a few ideas to help you get the most from your hard earned dollars.

1. Make coupons entitling the recipient to free babysitting, lawn mowing, house cleaning, etc. This tip is especially easy for people who own their own business and have a service they can give as a gift, such as hair and nail services for example.

2. Prepare holiday treats such as chocolate covered pretzels, cookie mixes in a jar or hot cocoa mix. These are nice presents for extended families, and children can help with preparation and assembly.

3. Remember that grandparents can never have enough photos. Plan to take some pictures of children with their grandparents a few months before the holidays. Make a scrapbook with the pictures, or spend a few dollars on a nice frame.

4. Visit resale shops, thrift stores, garage sales, antique shops throughout the year with friends and family members in mind. You will often find brand new items that could be the perfect gift for someone. On the other hand, you might find a great deal on memorabilia for an Elvis Presley or Coca-Cola fan in your life. Garage sales are also a great place to find barely used children's games and puzzles.

5. Comics used as wrapping paper never go out of style. Collect them from the Sunday paper throughout the year. Dress up wrapped presents with pretty ribbons and bows.

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