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Christmas All Year Round

It seems the advertising and hype machine has succeeded, it is Christmas year round. No, it is not a wonderful family time, but the hype to spend is pretty much year round.

Let’s wander through our Calendar Year of spending, shall we?

New Years

This really end up being an extension of Black Friday/Christmas spending, but New Years sales go on for a good long while.

St. Valentine’s Day

Also known as Love Day, Valentine’s Day is an orgy of overspending in the name of keeping your loved one happy. The easiest way to show love is by spending lots of money, we all know that.

Easter

Hasn’t been completely conscripted as an orgy of spending yet, but things can change quickly. Easter is always a good time for change, or starting new things, but isn’t associated with over-spending. It is associated with new clothes though.

Mother’s Day

You can’t love your mother unless you spend a lot of money on gifts for her, right? The guilt pulled out to sell things for this is disgusting, but it does seem to work quite well.

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May 2-4 Weekend

In the US it is usually around Memorial Day, and this holiday is when you need to spend enormous amounts of money on Cottages and outdoor projects. Also a big excuse for buying booze, and also buying Bar B Q’s, too!

Father’s Day

You know what your Dad wants for Father’s Day? Not all the the crap you are told by the media. He wants to know you are happy, safe and doing OK, that is about it, so don’t bankrupt yourself for this reason.

Canada Day (or the 4th of July)

Ain’t it great? The Fathers of Confederation were surely thinking it would be a great time to buy a new car, or possibly an RV, when Canada was formed. Seriously, that is a selling point for that weekend.

Back to School

Yes, that starts pretty much in June and runs the entire summer. The kids haven’t even finished Grade N, when you should start buying stuff for Grade N+1 (or maybe Grade N again). Remember it is a great time to think about RESPs, because your kids will need that money sooner thank you think!

Labour Day

Back to school and the last long weekend of getting drunk at the Cottage or while on vacation, so let’s splurge!

Thanksgiving

C’mon, it’s almost Christmas, for Pete’s sake, but you need to splurge for this one. Get the 50 Kg turkey and enough food to feed the Minnesota Vikings, because, that is what you do to say Thank You!

Halloween

Now it is getting crowded. Halloween really starts around Labour Day, but Thanksgiving kind of gets in the way as well, but Halloween is another huge money pit. If you don’t have $2000 worth of inflatable crap on your front lawn, you are an awful person. Halloween is ripped down at 1:00 AM on November 1st, in preparation for the big day!

Singles Day

Seriously folks, this is the biggest orgy of spending worldwide, and it is completely made up. I got as much email about this, as I did about Black Friday. It is a little off putting given in overlaps with Remembrance Day here in Canada.

Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Giving Tuesday

American Thanksgiving, is the trigger for more huge spending. It is the start of the Christmas season, and another excuse to buy stuff you really don’t need or even want! Black Friday is the reason for the season, right?

Christmas

Hence my thesis that it is year round Christmas. Is there any week, where I don’t receive a flyer with a plausible excuse for bankrupting myself? I doubt it.

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The British tradition of the Christmas Cracker is something I plan on continuing. Today, we will celebrate the horrible puns found in the Crackers, with these Terrible Financial Crackers.

Inside Christmas Crackers, there was a toy, a paper crown and usually a bad joke, pun or sage advice. These ideas for some sage financial advice are supposed to make you groan and wince when you read them.

Cracker 1:

I used to be a banker, but I lost interest.

Cracker 2:

I once got into so much debt that I couldn’t even afford my electricity bills, they were the darkest times of my life.

Cracker Next:

I had an account with a bank in the North Pole, but they froze all my assets.

Cracker for Uncle Stan

A bank manager without anyone around may find themselves a-loan.


Care to buy some? Available from Amazon

Some Other Bad Financial Puns

You get the idea, the Financial Christmas Cracker needs a financial pun (or worse a groaner) as its message.

Cost of living balloons due to high inflation!

Two banks with different rates have a conflict of interest.

Christmas Crackers

Irresponsible financiers must be discredited.

During an earthquake in California a bank went into default.

Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won’t expect it back.

OK One More

There was an extra one in the box:

Money talks …but all mine ever says is good-bye.

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Giving Tuesday

Black Friday, Cyber Monday and then? Giving Tuesday, of course. At the end of the year and during the holiday season, many charities rely on getting the bulk of their funding from the public.

In Ottawa, many charities are still recovering from the great Phoenix Sideswipe, so giving is that much more important.

If you give during the year, thank you. If you are looking for a list of charities to give to, every city has a list. I will include at the end of this list a group of charities that I either support, or have supported in the past.

Remember the gift itself doesn’t have to be only cash, it can be securities, but it can also be your talents. Phone up the charity and ask if they need help. If you have a specific skill that you think can help, offer that skill, there are many ways to help out a Charity.

If you are volunteer, Thank You as well. Your good works are appreciated, even if you aren’t always told that. Maybe we should call Wednesday Thank You Volunteer Wednesday?

Giving Tuesday Charities

Here is a list of a few interesting charities in Ottawa you can help out with a donation:

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The 12 Days of Christmas Debt

Just to get everyone in a festive Christmas spirit allow me to offer, this cautionary tale of Christmas Debt.

The 12 Days of Christmas DEBT

12 Months of Agonizing Payments

Have you paid off last Christmas yet? How about the one before that?

11 Maxed Out Credit Cards

How much room do you have on those cards? Really?

10 Overdrafts a leaping

Really, how much are you paying in overdraft fees? Just because your bank balance can show a negative value, doesn’t mean it should always be that way!

9 Minimum Payments

You realize you will pay that off in 20 years with those minimum payments, or possibly 50 years? Minimum payments simply forestall the inevitable.

8 Balance Transfers

Shuttling debt from one credit card to another is not solving the problem. Juggling chainsaws will lead to a messy end, and that is what this is.

7 Cashed in Emergency Funds

Christmas debt is an emergency? Don’t think that is the emergency you were planning for.

6 Pay Day Loans

This could be starting a death spiral in your finances that will lead you to Day (3)

5 Gold Reclamations!

Did your Grandmother leave you that ring to help you cash it in for pennies on the dollar to pay off debt?

4 Calling Collection Agencies

These are not the bogus ones you get emails from, these are the real ones

3 Calls to insolvency trustees

They can help, but you can’t keep doing this every year either.

2 Calls to your family for an emergency loan

You do have to pay those back, you realize?

1 Mortgage Refinance

Using the equity in your house to pay for consumer debt is a very bad thing.

Yes, not very festive, but ultimately a bit too true. I go to Church and I am confident the Christmas season is not designed to bankrupt you. It is at time to get together with family and friends. 

Wonder why you dislike this time of season? How many of the Days of Debt on the list are you facing in January? 

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Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! Yes the day is here, and I hope that you have a wonderful and special time with family and friends today. Merry Christmas to you all!

Christmas Tree 2017
The Actual Christmas Tree at my House

A favorite short video that played in Montreal on CFCF 12 at this Merry Christmas time for your enjoyment.

If that was a bit too austere for you, here is one of my favorites, a Wombling Merry Christmas. You could listen to Slade’s Merry Christmas too, but I still love the wombles.

Filmed in the Summer…

One more, a great Christmas Tradition from Wizzard!

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