QUESTION: Jim asks how you can balance a Christmas budget with the wants of their kids. If they can afford to spend more on the kids, should they give the kids what they are asking for, even if it’s outside what they’ve already budgeted for Christmas? He’s arguing with his wife about it. Dave says it starts by properly defining Christmas.
ANSWER: The first thing we do at our house with this issue is ask ourselves if we are defining Christmas poorly. If you define it by the crap under your Christmas tree, then you’ve got a bad definition of Christmas if you are arguing about it with your spouse. If you lay out a preplanned budget and you agree to that with your spouse, and now she wants to change it because the kids have the gimmees, either she’s spoiling the kids and doesn’t have the ability to say no, or your budget was too tight because you’re too big of a tightwad. This could be a little of both.
If you have the money, then compromise and adjust the budget a little bit and not let it be infinite. Learn how to say no to your kids.