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If you are like me, you want to be sure that when spending money this holiday season that you are giving great gifts! This year the National Retail Federation is expecting sales for both in November and December to increase a solid 3.6% for both brick-and-mortar and online merchants! Now with taking that number into consideration, you also have to think about how much credit card debt is going to stack up. This year in 2016 the average added credit card debt for holiday gifting is predicted to be roughly $1,000.00! Now I don’t know about you but $1,000.00 isn’t chump-change.

So besides all of the DIY gifts you can create and dollars you can spend on new technology this year, there are ways you can give a gift without little to no money at all!

Give a Coat: There’s a wonderful company out there called One Warm Coat. This company’s mission is to provide a warm coat to anyone in need, free of charge. They are one of the largest national organizations that supports over 3,000 coat drives each year. Imagine the gift of giving someone warmth, and possibly survival.

Be a Chef: You can donate some time at either a local soup kitchen or food pantry. Take the time to really give a gift of love and compassion while being able to help someone in real need. Another option is to prepare and cook a meal for a special someone. Imagine their doorbell ringing and they see someone has dinner already cooked for them!

Help Thy Neighbor: If you have an elderly neighbor or a single mom next door, stop over and offer them a helping hand. If you see a piece of fence is broken and you can fix it, then bring out your hammer. Or, offer to take the neighbor’s dog for a walk. There’s a lot of things you can do to help your neighbor, just pick your craft or skill and lend a hand.

Scrub a Dub: Here’s a good one for everyone; give a coupon for a one-time house cleaning! A parent or friend could probably use the help around the house to get it spick and span. It’s like “two birds with one stone”, you get to help your family out and don’t have to spend any money! Spending time and hard labor is a true gift.

Holidays bring a sense of magic to the air. You can add to that magic by doing something for someone else. After all, this is what the holidays are all about. And besides, Grandpa doesn’t need the new Amazon Echo, he’ll probably end up hitting it with a hammer if it doesn’t keep the noise down!

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