Today Show—Holiday Savings Ideas

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We were asked to come back to The Today Show again on December 9, to share how we save money at Christmas time.

How we Save Money on Christmas Gifts and Wrappings

We shared how we use cast off items (like plastic grocery bags, old candles, sponges and pine cones) to make great holiday decoration and gifts.

We shopped at one of our favorite thrift stores in Phoenix, Family Attic, and found some great cast-off candle wax (for pine cone fire starters), and some excess holiday ribbon.

Christmas Cast-Offs Go Way Back

Meredith Viera with Annette Economides holding a brown gingerbread ornament.

Annette presenting Meridith Viera her personalize Christmas Dough Ornament from MoneySmart Family.

Remember that the first family of Christmas took a chewed up feeding trough and turned it into a cradle for an infant king. If repurposing a common and crude appliance was good enough for them on that first Christmas morning, it’s good enough for us too.

We also made some special dough ornaments for Matt, Meredith, Ann and Al. They show Al’s ornament near the middle of the clip.

A Fire Hazard?

The Today Show producers are very safety minded and when they heard that we were bringing in Pine Cone “Fire Starters” the eliminated that from the segment saying that it was a fire hazard. Guess we should have called them “Decorative Wax-Dipped Pinecone Gift Baskets.” You can see them and a video here. 

If you want to get the recipe for Annette’s Christmas Pumpkin bread or instructions for any of the crafts you see, click here.

Matt Lauer and the Christmas Bread

Near the end of the segment, Matt asks if he can take a taste of Annette’s Christmas Pumpkin Bread. After the segment was over asked for more, and then a little more . . . he really liked it!

Steve & Annette Economides, America's Cheapest Family with Matt Lauer on the Today Show celebrating a frugal Christmas.

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