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 $25,431, up almost 5% from last year.  A good example of what inflation can do to your Christmas budget.

I’m going to do the 12 days of Christmas much cheaper!

A partridge in a pear tree cost, $205. Stick a branch in some dirt in a flowerpot, get online with Amazon and buy the Partridge Family Christmas CD for $6.

2 Turtle Doves cost, $125. Get two bars of Dove chocolate for $5.

3 French Hens are going for $165, but you can get Perdue hens on sale for 99 cents a pound and cook them in a French casserole for $12.

4 Calling birds at $520. According to my research, they are Colly birds, which are just plain old black birds. Buy The White Album by the Beatles that has the song Blackbird on it for $18 at Amazon.

5 Golden rings cost $750, a decent price for gold but you can get brass, a bit less showy but still bright and shiny. Cost, about a buck each at Home Depot.

6 Geese a-laying, $210. 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 at $7,000. These birds are very expensive 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, these women are only getting minimum wage. Buy the end product for $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, good seat tickets are going for $100 or more. Cost $200 or try one of the local productions for a lot less. $22 for two tickets in Littleton.

11 Pipers $2562. That price must include buying the bagpipes or airfare from Scotland!

12 Drummers $2775. I wonder if they are getting union rates? 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:  $112, a savings of over $25,300.


You can hear Dee Lee’s expert financial advice on WBZ NewsRadio 1030 each weekday at 1:55 p.m., 3:55 p.m., and 7:55 p.m.

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