Multigenerational Christmas Movies Everyone Will Love

The popcorn is popped, steaming mugs of hot chocolate are in hand and the lights of the Christmas tree softly set the stage for the annual family Christmas Movie gathering. But wait – there is still a decision to be made!  What movie should you watch? There are hundreds – if not thousands – of family-oriented Christmas movies for youngsters, oldersters and in-betweensters to watch together this year. How about trying some older movies? I thought I’d share some of …

Gift Wrapping, Cheapskate Style

Did you know that we spend about $2.9 billion every year on gift wrapping paper and supplies according to Hallmark? And of course most of it ends up being throw way after the holidays, which is one reason why between Thanksgiving and New Year’s we generate an extra one million tons of garbage every week. Consider these creative gift wrapping alternatives to save some cash and tread a little lighter on the environment this holiday season: Wrapping gifts in the colorful …

Cheapskate’s Smoked Salmon

When I made it for the holidays the first year after we were married, Denise emerged from the kitchen with a look on her face that shouted “Who the heck did I marry?” “Honey,” she said, “why are there bricks in our refrigerator?” “What?” I said, trying to hide a grin.  “I thought those were yours.  I mean, don’t you know that masonry products should always be refrigerated?”

Not Another Fruitcake Story

The article I wrote earlier this week about holiday tipping left me with a craving for fruitcake.  Even though it’s become sport to make fun of fruitcake, I love the stuff.  But that wasn’t always the case. In fact, my passion for fruitcake is a direct result of a holiday tipping story of my own. As I recall, winter came extra early to northwest Ohio in 1967. It was the week before Christmas, and we already had a solid foot …

Holiday Tipping: Show Your Gratitude Without Breaking the Bank

I’ve written before about “cheapskate etiquette,” how to pinch pennies and still be polite and respectful of others at the same time. Since it’s tradition this time of year to remember and thank the people who make our lives a little easier and better – from newspaper and mail carriers to the kid’s teacher and babysitter – I was glad to find this definitive article from the The Emily Post Institute about the subject of holiday tipping. Having interviewed representatives of …

Soda Can to Star? Yes! Fun and Frugal Holiday Decorations

As the days grow shorter and the nights get colder, I spend a lot of time in the evenings hunkered down next to the wood stove, reading or tinkering with various craft projects. Of course, I particularly love any craft that lets me recycle something that would otherwise end up in the trash. I call it “creative repurposing.” Here are three simple, fun holiday craft projects that make good use of would-be throw away items and let you deck the halls …