Somehow I missed this thread until now!

When I was very young my parents were on a very tight budget as well. My Mom has always believed in quantity over quality - so while we had a number of presents, they were all inexpensive. I remember one year she sewed my sister and I a huge collection of Barbie clothes mostly made from scraps and old socks. It was one of my favorite gifts ever. We always made decorated sugar cookies for Christmas (and rum balls) and we had an inexpensive buffet dinner on Christmas Eve and a roast beef dinner on Christmas Day. We usually had relatives for Christmas - usually my aunt and uncle (until the year he asked her for a divorce on Christmas night) and sometimes one of the Grandmothers. It was always a lot of fun even if we didn't spend much. Once my Mother returned to work, we had a lot more money in the house. We were 4 children so my Dad always watched his pennies. I was the oldest (my younger sister was almost 13 years younger) so I remember the most frugal times