While a lot of people are shopping for big ticket items, for some who are on a budget, you might find that you can get a lot of really great deals at little to no cost!

-Start Small: Those .99-Cent and $1 stores do have some things that might surprise you. Some carry gift wrap, tape, batteries, headphones, children's toys, housewares like bath gels and loofahs, kitchen towels, bath mats, kitchen mats and more.

-Think re-gift (new): Maybe you have a closet full of things that you received over time or bought and well, it just didn't work out. Take the opportunity to re-gift those items and let them find a new home. 

-Re-gift (old): Maybe you have a few things around the house that you don't use. You can give some things as a tax donation and you can also give things to family or friends. A phone operator shared with us that she's giving a dinnerware set to her daughter. My mom passed down to me a roasting pan, and I'm giving a neighbor a set of computer speakers and a jazz CD. He's a vet who's hard of hearing but loves old trumpet and drum music from the 50's. I found a CD of his faves and the speakers I no longer use.

Create a gift: Great cards and toys can be made out of cereal boxes and cardboard. Great treats can be made at home like cookies, pies and cakes. If you don't have a lot to make a big cookie recipe, cut it in half. Instead of a whole pie, make tartlets, and cupcakes instead of cakes or bon-bons! Other gift ideas include giving a mani or pedi to a friend or loved one. You can make up a gift certificate, or take out all your favorite colors and let them pick one just like they would at the spa. Teach kids how to make their own books using construction paper, or cut an old sheet and let them make handkerchiefs, colorful aprons and scarves. They can color them in with crayons, markers and paint. They can also make decorative jars by using old empty mason jars or spaghetti sauce jars and taping colorful creations they make onto them. This can be a new savings jar, a jar for cookies, tea bags, golf balls, or take 3 jars in a row for sugar, flour and salt!

So whether you're re-gifting or giving something old to someone blue, don't let the holidays on a tight budget bring you down. Make the season festive, imaginative and fun while you feel empowered because you've got great gift ideas! As we give from our hearts, it's not about the price tag, it's about giving from your heart and gifts that show you care. Tis the season!

PS And don't forget that on December 26th you can save a lot more on all those marked down holiday items! Sometimes the drug store reduces prices by 90%, so those kids toys just got a lot cheaper!