2013 Christmas Spending Guide (A How-To Guide On Avoiding Spending Aftershock)

We are in the heart of spending season. Whether it’s a party, secret Santa, not-so-secret-Santa, flights, or stringing up lights on your house, there are a million and one ways to spend during December. In the lead up to the end of the year, there are some ways you can lock it down (Budgeting all year long, keeping careful track of all your purchases, re-gifting the double crockpot that Nana got you last year) but frankly, those are tough. They take a lot of work, and they’re not realistic when everything gets so busy. That’s why Mogo is here with a 5 Step Spending Guide that is guaranteed to get you through the holiday season totally debt free! Step 1: Decide how much you want to spend on gifts this year Be honest, take a minute to see how much you’re able to spend, and get that number in your head. This one is the hardest part, and it’ll only take you a few minutes. Be honest with yourself, and set yourself up for success. That old saying about ‘it’s the thought that counts’? It’s true. Get a realistic number that you’ll

CONTEST: Let us send Cookies from Cupid to your sweetheart!

As resident blogger, Alan, mentioned in his post earlier today – Valentine’s day is just around the corner. So… Mogo wants to help you look like a total hero! The winner of our Cookies from Cupid contest will choose the lucky person they want to receive a basket of 3 dozen assorted cookies (including a heart-shaped one) from cookiegrams.com. And, if you choose yourself, we won’t judge you – we’d do the same. Click here to enter Cookies from Cupid on Facebook What’s the best knock-it-out-of-the-park V-day gift you’ve ever given?

The Ideal Girl Gift Guide

Much as I don’t want to admit it, guys and gals do have different wants when it comes to the holiday season. There’s always overlap—you can’t count on us both wanting the newest gadget, most likely—but in general ladies have a wishlist that’s going to look different from the dude one. Let the record show: I’m no girly girl, so if that’s who you’re shopping for you may want to look elsewhere. I feel I’m a nice mix of feminine and practical, and so are most of my female friends, so the lady in your life probably is, too. Here’s my list of desired gifts for 2011. Just send them care of Mogo, okay? 1. Kindle or Kobo E-Reader I’m a voracious reader, but I’m also a book lover. Not just reading books, but interacting with them—feeling the pages, smelling that faint musty library book smell—so I never truly got on board the e-book train. Until now, after having tried one out at a store and having it recommended by Mogo’s own Alan, and my sister. I want the old school one, though. No

Give it Away, Give it Away Now: How to choose a Christmas charity

A few years back, my family and I got tired of the usual Yuletide* game: spending tonnes of bucks on stuff that your sister/mother/brother-in-law/grandma/dog might not even like but felt obligated to fuss over. Instead, we started to get creative. For my stepmom, for example, my sister and I bought a goat. No, not an actual goat (though that might help with some of the Christmas cleanup) but rather a goat that went to a family in Africa. It’s a program through Oxfam, and it’s a great way to see a charitable donation practically applied. Plus, we were safe in the knowledge that our money might actually make a difference, as opposed to just giving us a bunch of stuff we didn’t need. Serious business, I know. But charity is important, so it should be taken seriously. And, having worked for a few charities in my time, I know that you need to do your homework. If you and your family want to donate money (or otherwise) this Christmas, great! My family loves it, and it’s fast becoming a tradition. But be careful to read up on your charity of choice and

Vancouver’s Best Holiday Markets

Like most people, I find it next to impossible to go to just one place and find everything on my Christmas list. My friends and family are all so different from one another that it can be super stressful to shop for them in a time-saving way. I’m also allergic to big box stores and shopping malls, which certainly doesn’t make the process easier. Or at least, that’s what I thought, until a friend dragged me to a Christmas Craft Fair. I admit that I was totally biased and unschooled, because in my mind I was picturing weird fluorescent lighting, crappy coffee served in Styrofoam cups, and dozens of grannies selling handmade tea cozies and those crocheted weird dolls that hold toilet paper…you know the ones. Not that there’s anything wrong with that (toilet paper dolls are people too…or something) but I wasn’t about to buy my then 21-year-old sister a hand-knitted sweater vest with pom-poms on it, if you catch my drift. Anyway, I was totally wrong (I’m sorry, crafters everywhere) because the Christmas Craft Fair was A-MAZING. There was everything from handmade jam to amazing recycled jewelry to beautiful party