money for christmas

10 Gift Ideas for the Broke Person

Gift season approaches, and I’ve been struggling on how best to spend what little money I have on all the people in my life who I want to give holiday presents to. I’m sure I’m not the only one with this problem… so I thought I’d share some ideas.

1. Mix CDs - make your friends/family a mix CD with handmade cover artwork. If you can’t afford a stack of CDs, make a virtual CD and share the mp3s with them over Dropbox.

2. Homemade Cookies - Spending $7 on baking ingredients allows you to make a large batch of simple cookies. Divide them and use as gifts for multiple people. Throw on a handmade card and WHAM you got yourself a spiffy gift.

3. Cooking supplies - I’m not talking top of the line Kitchen Aid shit. Go to your local dollar store and buy things like wooden spoons, platters, funny mugs for under $5. Everyone needs at least some cooking supplies!

4. Cacti - Don’t go to a nursery, go to a grocery or department store with a plant section. Cacti are some of the cheapest and easiest to maintain plants, they only really need to be watered once or twice a week. And they look awesome. If the person you had in mind likes to cook, you might want to consider buying them some sort of herb like rosemary or thyme.

5. Bulk food - This might not work for everybody, but I’m sure your broke roommate wouldn’t object to a bulk package of ramen or mac and cheese. They sell 12 packs of ramen at my local dollar store for $1 each. ONE DOLLAR FOR TWELVE MEALS.

6. Unused Books - I’m betting that there’s a book in your apartment/dorm room that’s in perfect condition, but for whatever reason that you will never use again. Wrap it in some gift wrap and scrape off the price tag.

7. Spa Day - For those of you in relationships (or who feel safe touching your close friends/family in that way) make mock “spa coupons”. Offer services such as manicures/pedicures, hair stylings, massages, etc.

8. Use your talents - Are you an artist or musician of any sort? Make a piece of artwork or write a song. Buy a large piece of poster paper at Home Depot for $5 and make a funny collage full of inside jokes that only your friends will understand. Are you a knitter? Make mittens for people.

9. Weird clothing - Go to your local Salvation Army or Goodwill and spend a couple hours combing the shelves for weird items. Funny t-shirts, strange hats, etc. Don’t go to department stores looking for clothing, it’ll be too expensive.

10. “Fancy” Meal - Spend $20 and invite several friends/family members over for a fancy dinner. You don’t need to be a chef or to spend lots of money to make something “fancy”, just make the atmosphere “fancy”. Make pasta with some sort of red sauce and possibly meat. Insist that everyone dresses up, light candles, play jazz standards, take pictures- make a real night of it. 

ALSO! If you can’t afford gift wrap use newspaper. 

I personally think December 2017 has become one of the craziest months in my lifetime cause here we have a bunch of people are making jokes about elf practice from some claymation Christmas movie from the 60s and bunch of other people are joking about a pro-life fan comic of a Disney movie. Meanwhile, some racist, Confederate flag loving white lady made up a whole story about her son being bullied just so people can give her money for her Christmas shopping, and somehow made $50,000 and got countless of invites from celebrities to hang out with her son. There is also a bunch of celebrities and politicians that are being exposed as sexual predators, one of them getting support from the President of the United States who is also a sexual predator. And to top it off, we’re really close to Net Neutrality being repealed causing hundreds to lose internet access but no one seems to be doing anything about it. This month has been a wild ride and I can’t wait for it to be over.

Working at a restaurant that’s slow on Christmas:

  • Everyone is pissed because they’re working on Christmas and everyone else they know is off and having fun/relaxing.

  • No double or triple pay because you work in the restaurant business and they aren’t required to pay you more on holidays.

  • Some jerk puts on Christmas music that would have annoyed most of us even if we weren’t stuck in this hellscape.

  • The few customers that do come in only orders from the bar.

  • Cleaning random stuff all day because everyone is bored and trying to make the time pass faster. 

  • Someone in the kitchen is probably prepping/cooking food for their holiday dinner at home.

  • All the higher-ups took the day off, they will later complain how slow it was on Christmas and that it cost more money to open and pay the employees.

  • Repeat again next year.
So, anyway: I’ve told you all how I was happy that my nephew was born in late December, meaning I only ever had to buy him one joint birthday/xmas gift. And my sister told me the latest one was due on Dec 4th.  I was delighted. The same deal, right? Then this one arrived in late November.  Now I feel like a supervillain whose evil schemes have been foiled.

This must be like how Emperor Palpatine felt at the end of ROTJ.

I had it all planned, you know?

welp we can’t eat tonight and christmas is ruined

our car broke down and our mechanic screwed us over so now we have no money for groceries or getting christmas gifts.

we really need some help.

Paypal email address:

please. this is a really bad situation

EDIT: Oh my goodness, thank you all for the kind words and for all the donations. I’m glad to be part of a community with so many amazing people! ❤ I appreciate this and won’t forget it for as long as I live. I love you all very much ❤❤❤

EDIT II: Thanks to y'all, I’ve been able to get food for the week, plus Christmas dinner! Bless all of your hearts, you’re all just so generous… ❤❤ To be honest, I started to cry a little when I saw how many people cared… I’m so grateful~

Hey if I have any financially comfortable followers who’d enjoy making a poor family’s Christmas a lot merrier, I have a wishlist that’s mostly inexpensive toys for the young children in my family.

My siblings and I are all poor and in our 20s or younger, with no surviving parents, so things are tight. We’ll be okay w/o lots of stuff but it would be so nice to have some special things for the little kids!

No pressure, we’ll have a happy Christmas regardless, but if you’re already looking to spread a little extra cheer this holiday season here’s an opportunity!