Holiday fun on a college budget

By Aubrie Smith, co-editor-in-chief

The party

Don’t rule out the dollar store

You may not want to rely on the dollar store for every single need, but most of your party needs can be found there at a significantly lower cost – a plastic fork is a plastic fork no matter how much you paid for it, right?

Call in reinforcements

If you’re hosting, ask a few people to bring a dish. This will keep some money in your wallet and lighten your task load. No one will expect you to host and do everything yourself. Don’t be afraid to ask for some help.

The food

Volunteer for the simple

Thanksgiving is a food-friendly holiday where we generally eat the same things every year. Be the first one to volunteer to bring a dish and choose something simple, easy and cheap. No one will think twice about your choice to pass the potatoes or grab a pie at the local grocery store. Everyone wins – including your wallet.

Make Google your best friend (or any other search engine, we don’t discriminate)

There are hundreds of three-ingredient recipes on the web. Pinterest is full of fast and cheap things to bring to your family outing. Surprise your family with something new without spending a dime!

The gifts

Don’t disregard second-hand stores

Just because someone else is done with something, doesn’t mean that it isn’t useful! Browse your local second-hand shops and find some gifts on the low. If you’re crafty, thrift stores are a must for some DIY items. Never pay full price for craft items again.

Stick to a standard

If you’re buying for multiple people this year, take one idea and personalize it to each individual. Customize hot chocolate per everyone’s taste, stuff pairs of slippers with each person’s little wants and needs or bring everyone entertainment with buckets of popcorn and movies. Shopping simply is shopping smartly.

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