This book is a golden-nugget in a sea of monochromatic stones. There are literally thousands of books on debt-proof living and how to manage finances when money is tight. I’ve read a lot of them and truthfully, there’s a lot of redundancy.
In this book, Debt-Proof Your Christmas, Mary Hunt goes to the heart of the matter. Because let’s face it, most of us give at Christmas because of societal pressure and guilt. We do. Admit it. I love Mary’s soft heart. She’s been there. She feels it and she totally lays out the honest “talking to” and makes you sigh with relief.
This is not a 10 step program or list on how to get out of debt or how to spend your money for Christmas. This is a book about attitude and changing our perceptions of why we spend the way we do.
Page 27: “No one can force me to spend money I do not have in order to pay for Christmas. No one. If I feel pressure to do that and then cave in, it is my fault. I am the one who did the forcing. “‘ …..did you just have an ah-ha moment like I did? Wow.
What I particularly love about this book is all of the practical advice and tips Mary shares. She gets right into the trenches with her readers and walks us through giving at Christmas with heart-felt affection , making the gifts meaningful, without spending a lot. Take for example gift baskets; yep, she actually walks you through putting one together for a neighbour or friend!
Page 49: ” A note of caution for you: Come Christmas, as you are putting your baskets together, a little voice may start whispering in your ear. It will suggest your gifts aren’t good enough, you need to go buy some real gifts, and your biscuits and jam them is silly. You know it’s going to happen, so plan on it. Then determine that you will not listen, choosing rather to trust yourself and to believe in your plan.”
Or what about the guilt associated with giving at all? We’ve all been there; giving when we really didn’t want to.
Page 61: “Gifts are messengers. They are tokens of the esteem we hold for people we care about. They deliver our love and our best wishes. Gifts express fondness we have for another person. Without the care, love or concern, the gift is empty. Giving a gift just so you can mark a name off a list is a hollow effort that is likely to fall flat no matter how much money you spend. “‘ Wow. I just love everything about that!
Later in the book Mary shares list of gifts to give to teenagers ,adults, kids and whomever you may have on your list. She shares recipes! Yes, really! This is not your average financial advice how-to book. This is practical and right on target for the Christmas season.
The primary focus of this book is targeting those who may have or still do use credit for getting through the Christmas season. If you are struggling with this or have struggled in the past, by the end of this book you will never go back to paying for gifts, travel, food with credit again. Mary’s use of her own family’s struggles and anecdotes makes this a personal journey and so you know that you are getting advice from someone who’s been there. I only wish I would have had this book many years ago.
Full of ideas. Full of testimonies. Full of hope for having a debt-free holiday. A great book!
“Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group”.