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Financial Fundamentals

Merry Christmas! My Favorite Christmas Movies and the Money Lessons from Them

Alexandra Ardelean

Merry Christmas! I hope you are having a wonderful holiday season. Today, I want to share with you my favorite Christmas movies and the money lessons I've learned from them. I would love to hear your favorite Christmas movies and the money lessons you've learned from them in the comments below.

But first, let me tell you about a game that would make a great Christmas gift for anyone on your list. It's called Taffle. Taffle is a category game that is perfect for family game night, parties, or just hanging out with friends. It's suitable for ages 12 and up, so it's great for teens and adults. To play Taffle, you draw a card with a category on it, like "Things You Do at the Beach" or "Famous Landmarks." Then, you have 30 seconds to come up with as many things that fit that category as you can. It's fast-paced and fun, and it's a great way to create memories with your family and friends. You can find Taffle at Walmart, so pick up a copy today and get ready to have some fun!

Now, let's get into my favorite Christmas movies and the money lessons I've learned from them.

Favorite Movie #1: "Christmas Vacation"

I absolutely love "Christmas Vacation." It's one of my all-time favorite Christmas movies, and I watch it every year without fail. There are so many hilarious moments in this movie, but there's also a great money lesson in there too.

In "Christmas Vacation," Clark Griswold is expecting a big holiday bonus from work, and he has big plans for how he's going to spend it. He starts spending the money before he even has it in his hands, and he gets himself into all kinds of trouble because of it.

The simple lesson here is: don't spend money you don't have. Many people struggle with this, especially during the holidays when there are so many tempting purchases. It's crucial to remember that the money isn't yours to spend until it's actually in your bank account.

I've certainly been guilty of this in the past, particularly when my income was commission-based. Receiving a large check one month would prompt me to immediately plan how to spend it. But then the following month would arrive, and my earnings wouldn't be as high, leaving me scrambling to pay my bills.

That's why it's so important to have a budget and stick to it. If you're not sure where to start with budgeting, I highly recommend checking out EveryDollar. It's a great tool for creating a budget that works for you and helps you stay on track with your spending.

Favorite Movie #2: "Elf"

"Elf" is another one of my all-time favorite Christmas movies. It's such a heartwarming story, and Will Ferrell is absolutely hilarious as Buddy the Elf.

One of the things I love most about "Elf" is how innocent and lovable Buddy is. He has such a childlike wonder about him, and he truly believes in the magic of Christmas. It's impossible not to smile when you watch him running around New York City in his elf costume, spreading joy wherever he goes.

But there's also an important financial lesson to be learned from "Elf." In the movie, Buddy gets caught up in holiday advertising and ends up buying far more gifts than he can afford. He believes that spending lavishly on expensive presents will bring happiness, but he soon realizes that thoughtful gifts are far more valuable than costly ones.

This is something that a lot of people struggle with during the holidays. We're bombarded with ads telling us that we need to buy this or that in order to have a perfect Christmas, and it can be really easy to get caught up in the hype and overspend.

But the truth is that you don't need to spend a lot of money to show people that you care about them. In fact, some of the best gifts are the ones that don't cost anything at all - like spending quality time together or doing something nice for someone else.

So, this holiday season, don't get caught up in the marketing frenzy. Rather than spending on lavish gifts, shift your focus to spending quality time with your loved ones and creating cherished memories together. That is the true essence of Christmas.

Favorite Movie #3: "Home Alone 2: Lost in New York"

"Home Alone 2: Lost in New York" is another classic Christmas movie that I love watching every year. It's just as funny and heartwarming as the first "Home Alone" movie, and it never fails to put me in the holiday spirit.

There's one scene in "Home Alone 2" that always makes me laugh - but it's also a good reminder to be careful with your money.

In this scene, Kevin McCallister checks into a fancy hotel using his dad's credit card without permission (which is definitely not something I condone). He proceeds to live it up at the hotel - ordering room service, renting movies, and even getting his own limo - all on his dad's dime.

"Însă lucrurile iau o întorsătură neașteptată atunci când Kevin încearcă să folosească cardul de credit al tatălui său la magazinul de jucării Duncan's Toy Chest și află că a fost raportat ca fiind furat (de către Kevin însuși). Se creează haos atunci când Kevin încearcă să fugă din magazin, în timp ce este urmărit de Harry și Marv (Hoții Uzi), care se dau drept ofițeri de poliție."

While this scene is obviously exaggerated for comedic effect (and probably wouldn't happen in real life), there is still an important lesson here about being responsible with your credit cards (and debit cards too).

It can be really easy to overspend during the holidays - especially when you're using credit cards or debit cards instead of cash. But overspending can lead to all kinds of problems down the road - like high interest charges on your credit card balance or overdraft fees on your bank account.

That's why it's so important to keep track of your transactions and make sure you're not spending more than you can afford. One great way to do this is by using EveryDollar - which allows you to link your bank accounts so you can see all of your transactions in one place.

By keeping an eye on your spending throughout the holiday season (and beyond), you can avoid getting into financial trouble like poor Kevin McCallister did when he got his dad's credit card reported stolen.

Favorite Movie #4: "The Santa Clause"

"The Santa Clause" is one of my favorite Christmas movies, as it is both hilarious and heartwarming, and it also offers valuable lessons about family and responsibility.

In case you're not familiar with "The Santa Clause," here's a quick summary: Tim Allen plays Scott Calvin, a divorced dad who accidentally causes Santa Claus to fall off his roof on Christmas Eve. When Scott puts on Santa's suit (for reasons too complicated to explain here), he magically becomes the new Santa Claus - whether he likes it or not.

There are so many funny moments in this movie - like when Scott starts gaining weight inexplicably or when he tries to explain his new job as Santa Claus to his ex-wife (who understandably thinks he's lost his mind).

But there are also some great lessons about responsibility - especially when it comes to overcommitting yourself during the holidays.

One scene that always makes me laugh (but also makes me cringe) is when Scott decides he wants to make an elaborate Christmas dinner for his son Charlie (who still believes in Santa Claus) before they go back home after their unexpected trip to the North Pole.

Scott goes all out trying to make everything perfect - from roasting an enormous turkey (that barely fits in his oven) to making homemade cranberry sauce from scratch (which ends up exploding all over his kitchen). He even tries to make chocolate mousse for dessert using cocoa powder instead of chocolate chips because he doesn't have any chocolate chips on hand (which does not end well).

As a cooking (and eating) enthusiast, I can absolutely relate to the desire for perfection when hosting a holiday dinner or party. However, taking on too much can result in unnecessary stress, as poor Scott Calvin discovers when he tries to get everything done before Charlie's nap ends.

This scene serves as an important reminder not to overcommit yourself during the holidays, whether that's taking on too much at work or trying to do too much at home. It's okay if everything isn't perfect; what matters most is spending quality time with your loved ones and creating happy memories.

This holiday season, avoid stressing over perfection. Emphasize enjoying the moment and fostering meaningful connections with those around you, much like Scott eventually does with Charlie. After their disastrous dinner-making endeavor, Scott invites Charlie for Chinese food, creating a positive memory from a challenging situation.

Favorite Movie #5: "How The Grinch Stole Christmas"

"How The Grinch Stole Christmas" has been one of my favorite movies since I was a little girl! The story imparts valuable lessons about kindness, generosity, and forgiveness... and yes, even personal finance!

In case you're not familiar with "How The Grinch Stole Christmas," here’s a quick summary: The Grinch hates Christmas because he feels like everyone else loves it too much! So he decides that if he can't enjoy Christmas...then no one else should either! He devises an evil plan where he dresses up as Santa Claus...sneaks into Whoville...and steals all their presents!

But despite stealing everything...the Whos still celebrate Christmas! They sing songs...they hold hands...they eat roast beast...and they have fun together! And seeing this makes The Grinch realize that maybe...just maybe...Christmas isn’t about presents after all!

One of my favorite lines from this movie comes at the very end when The Grinch says:

“Maybe Christmas doesn’t come from a store…maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”

This line reminds us that we shouldn’t measure our happiness by how much stuff we have! Instead...we should focus on building strong relationships with our friends & family members! Because those relationships are what truly matter!

And speaking of relationships...I want YOU know how much I appreciate YOU! Thank YOU for being part of our community! Thank YOU for reading our articles & watching our videos! Thank YOU for sharing our content with others!

I hope YOU have an amazing holiday season filled with joy & laughter! And remember...the best gift YOU can give someone else doesn’t come from a store…it comes from YOUR heart!