BOSTON (CBS) – In the Christmas poem The 12 days of Christmas, this guy wants to impress his true love with gifts between Christmas and the Epiphany (January 6th). According to the PNC Wealth Management Christmas Price Index, it would cost him $24,263 this year.
An increase of close to $1,000 over last year and double what it cost in 1984. A good example of what inflation can do to your Christmas budget.
So I decided we could do the 12 days of Christmas much cheaper.
A Partridge In A Pear Tree cost $185. Stick a branch in some dirt in a flowerpot, get online with Amazon and buy the Partridge Family Christmas CD for $7.
2 Turtle Doves cost $125, up from $100 last year. Get two bars of Dove chocolate for $5.
3 French Hens are going for $150, but you can get Perdue hens on sale at $.99 a pound and cook them in a French casserole for $12.
4 Calling Birds are at $520, down from last year’s $600. According to my research they are Colly birds, which are just black birds. Noisy and nasty creatures so we can easily substitute here. Buy the Beatles The White Album that has the song Blackbird on it for $18 at Amazon.
5 Golden Rings cost $645, a decent price for gold but you can get brass rings, a bit less showy but still bright and shiny. Cost about a buck each at Home Depot.
6 Geese A-Laying, $162. Geese are messy and everywhere. I have a flock in my backfield. $0 dollars if you come and chase them away. There is no market for goose eggs.
7 Swans A-Swimming, these birds are very expensive at $6,300 and high maintenance. Instead, give your true love a gift certificate for a trip in the spring to the Boston Garden and a ride on the swan boats. Cost for gas $10, parking $20, swan boat $5.50 for 2 adult tickets. Total $41.
8 Maids A-Milking, $58…they are getting minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. Here we can buy the end product for under $3 a gallon on sale.
9 Ladies Dancing for $6,294.
10 Lords A-Leaping for $4766, well you can get both ladies and lords at the Nutcracker, cheap tickets are going for $70 each. Cost $140, or go to see one of the local productions for a lot less. I paid $36 for two tickets in Littleton.
11 Pipers Piping $2428.
12 Drummers Drumming, $2629. My alternative, turn on the Rose Bowl parade on New Year’s day and watch all of the bands strutting their stuff. Cost $0.
My total: My 12 Days of Christmas costs $127, a savings of over $24,000.
One more thing:
On the twelfth day of Christmas,
My true love sent to me
Twelve drummers drumming,
Eleven pipers piping,
Ten lords a-leaping,
Nine ladies dancing,
Eight maids a-milking,
Seven swans a-swimming,
Six geese a-laying,
Five golden rings,
Four calling birds,
Three French hens,
Two turtle doves,
And a partridge in a pear tree!