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How to Get through the Holidays when Money Is Tight

Rachel Cruze

Money Management for Parents

Q: My wife and I are living paycheck to paycheck and haven’t set aside a lot of money for Christmas. What do you suggest?

Rachel: Well, Christmas is just weeks away. If you don’t have any extra money set aside, then you might consider taking an extra part-time job to pick up the slack. Or maybe just take a break from gift giving this Christmas and plan on making a budget for next year.

The main thing is to keep your priorities in line. Don’t go out and load up your credit cards and make your financial situation even worse. Do what you can with what you have.

If you have kids, buy something small for them. If you’re married, either look into getting something small for your spouse or simply enjoy being together during the holidays.

There’s nothing wrong with taking a step back this Christmas. The commercialism of it all can put a lot of pressure on you, but don’t fall into that trap.

Don’t let the pressure of gift giving make you lose sight of what Christmas is really about.

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Rachel Cruze

Growing up as Dave Ramsey's kid, Rachel Cruze learned the basic principles of money at an early age. She travels across the country teaching those same principles, in a personal and passionate message of money and hope, to teens and young adults. To find out more about Rachel, visit or follow her on Twitter at @RachelCruze.