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Give Your Time as a Present

Many of us frugal folks know that when we don't have money to spend on gifts, we sometimes choose to give people "coupons" for things like babysitting, cooking, mowing the lawn and other useful chores or activities.


My partner told me that he didn't want me to spend more than $100 on both his birthday and Yule gifts (they are just a few days apart). So bought him a couple of needed items but wanted to do something special. Since we live together, he doesn't get any of my homemade goodies as he eats them here when I make them. I decided to make him a few coupons with corresponding items attached to them. These would be good for partners (girlfriends, boyfriends, husbands, wives...)

  • Coupon for a sponge bath. He loves baths so I made a coupon to draw him a bath and light candles which I included a sample of bubble bath that I got for free at The Body Shop (If you ask, they will give you one in a nice container). You could also include an actual sponge!

  • Coupon for a homemade facial. I got sample packets of face wash, scrub and a mask to go with this. These are easily found at dollarstores or you can make some of these yourself)

  • Coupon for a body scrub. Make your own body scrub with sugar and oil or salt and oil. Use vitamin E to prevent it from becoming rancid, in case you will use it more than once). I had a gift card for The Body Shop so I bought a really nice smelling scrub to go with the coupon.

Other ideas could include a massage. I have a friend who studied aroma massage online through a course, and is giving massage coupons to her female friends so she can practice and they get a little relaxation and it only costs her some time. I do Reiki which is Japanese Energy work which I learned and have given this to people as well.

If you are good at doing nails, hair or make up, you can offer your friends a free manicure/pedicure, haircut/style or special make up application. The choices are endless!


If you do house repairs or painting that could be a nice gift for someone.

The cost of time is priceless and it's the gift people tend to cherish the most.

By freya1970 from Halifax, NS

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December 15, 20090 found this helpful

Volunteer at an old age home, orphanage or a shelter just for an hour. Do manicure, pedicure or trim or style someones hair at the old age home. Visit a senior citizen just to chat. Call someone who hasn't called you for a while. Give a hug.

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December 19, 20090 found this helpful

Excellent and priceless, literally, lol!
I told my daughters that all I really wanted for Christmas this year was a "girls' day out" with them. I'm paying for my own lunch at a local China Buffet restaurant. I'll also probably give my daughter who's doing all the driving gas money.


I'm far from rich, but time with my daughters and daughter-in-law is worth more to me than all the expensive gifts in the world! In fact, I wish hubby had offered me a hot oil hair treatment here at home rather than spending $50 on his Sears card for jammies, a robe and slippers.

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December 14, 20090 found this helpful

For those of you who don't have a lot of money this Christmas, OR, for those of you who really want to do something Super-Special for someone, TRY THIS: Coupons. Yes, Coupons!

There's nothing better than a book of home made "Coupons".

Here's some ideas:

Just use your imagination! These gifts will cost you nothing, but they will be the receiver's favorite gifts, this I'll guarantee!

Cyinda from near Seattle

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