My 5 year old daughter told me she wanted a Princess Elsa doll for Christmas. Not just any Princess Elsa doll but a baby Princess Elsa doll. I didn’t anticipate my online search to return any results, but it turns out they actually do have baby Princess Elsa dolls. And they cost $38 flippin dollars! So I came up with an innovative solution that saved me over me 60%.
I continued browsing through the different types of dolls and found that they not only have a baby princess line but also a toddler princess line. The toddler princesses were generally cheaper, and Amanda and I agreed our daugher would probably like the toddler version better. The toddler Princess Elsa doll, however, was still significantly more expensive than the other toddler princess dolls. I continued searching wondering how I would make this work – then I saw her.
She has beautiful long blonde hair and a sparkling purple dress. If she didn’t only cost $14.99, I would have thought that she were Elsa. But she’s better than Elsa because she has tons of hair for my daughter to brush. That’s what they like right?
We won’t tell her it’s really Rapunzel, but neither will we tell her it’s not Elsa. Win!
Gifts for the other kids
I’m getting a remote control helicopter for my son (and me). I would have freaked out as a kid to get a remote control helicopter. I thought they cost hundreds of dollars, but you can get them now for $17! We had to get our baby daughter a doll like her big sis, so we went with Ariel who was in the same price range.
Giving vs. Receiving
Like last year, we took the kids to the $5 store and helped each kid choose presents for their siblings. They enjoy choosing the gifts and anticipate the giving almost as much as the receiving! We don’t have many Christmas traditions yet, but this is one of my favorites.
Other than that, it will be whatever presents they get from grandparents and stocking stuffers. We haven’t really set a high precedent when it comes to Christmas, which I think is a good thing at this age.
The Christmas tree experience vs. cost
Growing up in the desert area known as Las Vegas, I once heard rumors of faraway places where people cut down their own Christmas trees. I pictured Paul Bunyan-like characters going into the woods, cutting down a tree with an axe, and dragging it back to a secluded wood cabin with smoke coming out of the chimney. After moving to Michigan though, we found out that we could actually go to a tree farm and have our own tree cut before our eyes. We witnessed the wonder of it all for ourselves last Christmas. This year, we just went to Lowe’s and got a tree for 19 bucks.
Christmas gift budget
Here’s about what we’ll have spent on Christmas this year:
- Husband/wife gifts $80
- Kids gifts $70
- Kids’ sibling gifts $22
- Stocking stuff $35
- Tree $19
- Total $226
We keep it pretty simple, and grandparents usually send some gifts too. As far as extended family gifts go, we’ve got 16 nephews and nieces, which is way too many to buy presents for. My solution? Let their parents worry about it (Sorry bros). With the extra family time we have around the holiday, we enjoy calling each other or doing video chats, which is just as fun as getting gifts.
Are you spending more or less money this holiday? Do you have any inexpensive traditions I should start?