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Don't have a lot of cash this holiday season. Here are a few ways for you to spread the holiday cheer without spending a lot of dinero...

CREATE YOUR GIFT
1. Create a Slideshow: Gather photos of your friends and create a slideshow or video. You can use a site like slide.com or photobucket.com to make a cute slideshow with graphics, sparkle and music. Email it out to your friends to bring a smile to their face during the holidays. If you have software like iMovie or Movie Maker installed on your computer, you can make a video slideshow.
2. Design a Photo Collage: Get a large frame and then fill it with pictures that capture your memories with your loved ones. You can go to a discount store and find inexpensive frames.
3. Create a Cocoa Mix: Get your favorite hot chocolate mix and put it in a decorative jar. You can add some fun toppings like marshmallows.
4. Make a Mix CD: Put together a CD with your friends fav songs.
5. Make a Treat Bag: Put a bunch of sweet treats in a holiday plastic bag. If you bake, you can make cookies, browines, cupcakes or other sweets for you loved ones. You can also make a bag with candies or chocolate. This is great for anyone with a sweet tooth.
6. Share your Time: You can create a coupon book to give to your parents. On each coupon, you can write something that you will help with. For example, one babysitting session with a little brother, washing dishes for a week, etc.

MAKE IT A PARTY
1. Host a Gift Exchange: Instead of giving a gift to every friend, organize a gift exchange with your amigas. Have each person pick one name our of a box that they will buy a gift for. This way you don't have to feel pressured to buy something for everyone.
2. Organize a Cookie Party: Get a group of friends together and ask everyone to bake a 12 cookies. Then, everyone can get together to swap cookies. This is a great way to share sweet treats during the holidays.
3. Have a White Elephant Gift Exchange: Gather your friends and ask everyone to bring one gift that is silly or tacky. People can bring gently used items or just re-gift something. Everyone picks a number out of a box and they get to pick their item from under the tree. One person's unwanted gift can be perfect for someone else.
4. Organize an Ornament Exchange: Get your friends together to exchange ornaments. Each person can buy or create an ornament and then everyone can exchange.

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Comment by Alicia on December 22, 2009 at 12:10pm
Love your creative ideas. You don't have to spend tons of money to enjoy the holidays. I've heard of some families that are having a gift exchange using loteria. They buy a few small gifts and then play loteria. When someone wins, they get to pick one of the gifts. The first winner gets first choice of gifts. You could make it fair by having someone kicked off the game once they win an item and continue playing until everyone gets something.


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