For most of us, it is back to work day today (some lucky folks got to work through the holidays, and for those folks, you have my sympathies), let’s all remain calm and get through this short week without too much drama or excitement (let us not speak of any Financial Cliffs/Ridge/Escarpments or the like, or if we do, in hushed tones).
So Christmas the season and holiday is over, how much did it cost? In terms of time and aggravation, I can’t really help on quantifying that but here are some important things to remember to have in your total (in case you want to budget for next year):
- All presents bought, which is easy most people would have that at the top of their list. Do you have all the receipts? Why not?
- Holiday gratuities should be included, if you tip your: doorman, paperboy, garbage man, mailman, etc,. etc., etc.,
- If you traveled to see loved ones, the cost of travel (gas, hotels, etc.,) is part of that total
- Did you eat out more often? Maybe you should add those extra meals in your totals
- Did you have to pay someone to watch your house, your dog, your cats, or the like?
- How much did you drink? Did you buy a lot of booze?
- Did you have a party? Did you buy new clothes for the party? Food for the party? This can add up
- Did you have visitors? Did you buy a lot more food for these visitors? Did they overuse your Internet access and do you have overage payments?
What should you do with this total? Sit there and fixate about it and make your life miserable? No! Simply take the total divide it by the number of pay cheques until next Christmas (if you are paid bi-weekly, let’s say 24), and that is how much money you should put away per pay cheque for next year, Voila, problem under control.