December can be an expensive time of year with many of us looking for ways to cut back. This got us thinking about ways we could give back, yet still, have fun as a family.
Recently, all us UK Money Bloggers got together and decided to give something back by making a Reverse Advent Calendar.
What is a Reverse Advent Calendar?
It’s been around for a while, but it’s mainly where you open a calendar over the 24 days of advent and give something back to people in need.
We plan to give our box to our local Trussell food bank, but schools and churches run them too.
What Goes in It?
Everything is appreciated, but if you like a good list (and I do) then this is what they are looking for:
• Pasta sauce
• Tinned meat
• Tinned vegetables
• Tinned Potatoes
• Tinned fruit
• Sponge Puddings
• Powdered milk
• Long life milk
• Toiletries – deodorant, toilet paper, shower gel, shaving gel, shampoo, soap, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hand wipes
• Household items – laundry liquid detergent, laundry powder, washing up liquid
• Feminine products – sanitary towels and tampons
• Baby supplies – nappies, baby wipes, and baby food.
Please remember to check your local food bank website to see what they need. Many will have a very clear list of what they are short of.
It doesn’t matter when you start. We will do ours during December, but some people like to start now ready to donate before Christmas.
If money is a real factor, then have a look at apps like Checkout Smart, Shopmium and ClickSnap, which all allow you to get free food.
Check the offers on the apps first, purchase the item, upload your receipt and get your money back. It really is that simple. There are loads of offers on there, so give it a try, you really have nothing to lose.
To make it extra fun, why not sign up to our newsletter and receive your FREE downloadable printable advent calendar.
We open one a day and add the item to our box, the kids taking it in turns.
You do the Reverse Calendar however you like, but it really is a fun activity as well as a nice way to give back.
Sixteen other free things you can do as a family over the Christmas period that won’t cost you a penny
1. Write to Father Christmas
2. Make your own Christmas cards
3. Watch Christmas films
4. Go to a carol service
5. Collect pinecones and leaves for a fun craft picture
6. Make gingerbread men
7. Play a board game with Christmas music on
8. Deliver your cards by hand
9. Make a bird feeder
10. Make your own advent box
11. Have a picnic under the Christmas tree
12. Make a Christmas video to send to the family
13. Make a Duplo or Lego naivety
14. Wrap presents
15. Come up with some Christmas cracker jokes
16. Visit your local garden center to walk around the lights
- 9 Money Saving Tips For Families That We All Should Be Using Right Now
- 7 Money Saving Tips for Christmas: Act Now to Slash Costs
- How to Save £364 in Time for Christmas Shopping
Double the Savings
So what do you do with all this money you’ve saved in December? Save it!
You could plan a No Spend weekend once a week in December, and do something free as a family. It also helps you, and the kids remember what is really important.
December is a really hard month, but by being a bit more mindful, you can still have fun while supporting local events and charities.
Give it a go, and enjoy all the free activities around you.