PF Weekly Grab a Brew

Is Father’s Day another marketing ploy to eat into your budget? : PF Weekly grab a brew #76

grab-a-brew-Father's Day Marketing for giftsSTEPPING AWAY FROM THE NORM


Father’s Day is just around the corner and for many that means heading out to the shops to find a gift to give to dad.

While reading the weekly flyers last night it’s becoming apparent that that Father’s Day is just another scheme to get more money from us.


Father’s Day


I’ve never bought my dad a gift for Father’s Day simply because we never grew up like that back home in the UK. So how come we have to buy gifts just to say I love you? Some of the best gifts for men aren’t bought at the shop rather they are shared through words and telling your dad just how much you love him.

My father always had an important message to teach me and one which stood out in my mind, “You only get one shot” and he’s right. While my parents taught me to save money and to spend it on things that I needed and not wanted I’ve learned why as I’ve gotten older.

I’ve also learned that you can make things using creativity and imagination to give to loved ones rather than spending money on them buying gifts they probably don’t even care for. CBB writer Nicola for example enjoys baking her dad Millionaire Shortbread squares for Father’s Day because that’s his favourite cookie.

I don’t think there is a registry for Father’s Day gifts but let’s not get too ahead of myself because I might end up shooting myself in the foot. Every time I think of an idea it’s likely already in the making or in full-force in the stores.


Greeting cards


On Mother’s Day and Father’s Day we would make greeting cards and write something special inside of them for dad when I was a kid.  As I got older and still to this day I send my dad a Happy Father’s Day card that I pick up at the Dollar Store.

I have always found a card that would suit my father for $1 rather than spending $5 and up at Hallmark or other posh card shops. Sometimes I see coupons for greeting cards at Shoppers Drug Mart and even with the discount I can’t be bothered to spend that much on a card I could essentially write myself.

How many of you actually keep greeting cards? If we kept every birthday, wedding, baby shower, wedding shower and now the grandma baby shower greeting cards we’d have to save a space in the house just to store them.

It reminds me of the wedding videos that people spend thousands on never to watch again or the wedding photos only to be seen a handful of times and then collect dust. Greeting cards are in my opinion emotions for the moment and then what is read becomes a memory in their minds, something they will always cherish.

The greeting card for the most part might sit on a mantle in the living room for a week and then hit the trash. Admit it, you’ve done it. Not everyone bins greeting cards as some people come up with genius ways to re-purpose them which is great. This however is what leads me to how frosted these occasions are for people and how accustomed we’ve become to spending money.

The weekly flyers were layered with Gifts for Dad and Happy Father’s Day savings that makes me wonder if we are more worried about buying “stuff” for dad than the meaning of the day. How many lawn mowers, grass trimmers, golf shorts and silly wall art portraits for the man cave does dad really need?

To me Father’s Day is just a special day for dad because every time my parents call me I tell them both how much I love them. I do the same with my wife so that I don’t have to worry about making it up to her on Valentine’s Day because every day is Valentine’s Day for her.

My father lives in the UK so he called to tell me thank-you for the Father’s Day greeting card before they jet off on vacation which they do many weeks of the year since retiring. My dad has taught me so much about life and finance that one day I hope that I can enjoy my retirement the same way my parents are.


Gifts for Dad


What do you buy dad?

My wife on the other hand her father lives in Ontario and he always says not to buy him anything because he doesn’t need any more crap around the house. I have to laugh because it’s true. Just because he says that doesn’t mean that the kids listen.

Over the years they have all put money in a pool to buy him a snow-blower, BBQ, lawnmower and smoker. Sure he uses all the toys but as the kids have grown older they have backed away from doing this because he doesn’t need anything more and doesn’t want it. All he wants is for his kids to call or come home to visit him since they all live out of town.

Homemade Father’s Day gifts are your best bet when you are a child but coming home for Father’s Day is even better when you are older.

I know my wife and I are somewhat frugal but it gets to the point where it’s more about buying something so you don’t look like a cheapo rather than remembering what the point of the day is.

We go to garage sales and many of the older adults seem to have so much stuff they don’t have any more room for it or simply don’t use it any longer. One gentlemen told me at a recent garage sale I went to about a fishing plaque that he had for sale brand new in the box. He told me he received it as a gift and never used it. Well, that was worth it wasn’t it?

The older you get the less you need because you’ve likely already bought it or were gifted it at Christmas or other holidays. I also find that as I get older if I want something I’ll just wait for it to go on sale, then buy it.

Gift-giving which requires you to make a purchase when you get older is not as much fun because you know you can go buy it. Receiving homemade gifts seems to touch the heart more for us as does a simple visit for tea and cookies.

When you are a child that is where all the fun is but that is also where we begin the journey of marketing for these holidays that can eat into our budget as we get older.

So, this Father’s Day if you don’t have money in your budget to spend on dad or want to break the buying spree of these holidays don’t worry I’m sure he will be happy just to see you or hear your voice and know that you love him more than you did yesterday.

Do you buy for special occasions like Father’s Day?

What are your feelings around the mass marketing for these occasions and are they going overboard?


Top recipe


Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Pickles

If you don’t already know I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I share recipes from other Foodie Bloggers from around the world.

Once a week I pick one recipe that has been submitted as my Top Recipe of the week. Trust me when I say this is no easy task as some of these foodies can cook up a storm.

This week I picked a recipe that caught me off-guard. I was told that deep-fried pickles were amazing so while my wife and I were out for dinner one night we ordered some. They actually turned out better than I thought.

They were crispy and when you bit into them hot pickle juice would stream down and into your mouth. When Seduction in the Kitchen posted this Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Fried Pickles recipe on my Facebook page I was in awe. I wanted to make them right away. I love bacon and I’m sure this treat will be given a thumbs up by my wife!


Weekly CBB posts


If you missed any CBB posts from the week here is the list of posts you can catch up on reading!


Weekly reads


Every week I share a few of the best personal finance blog posts that I read online over the past week with all of you so please enjoy my top 8 picks.

My Editor’s Pick goes to Squawkfox with Daddy Plays. Mommy Cries… about depression.

Well, that’s a wrap for this PF Friday’s Grab a brew #76. Happy budgeting and I’ll see you here again next week when I do it all over again.



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  1. I agree that there’s a lot of marketing around these “Hallmark holidays” but I do like to tell the folks in my life that I appreciate them so, in addition to trying to do that on a regular basis throughout the year, I welcome these opportunities to say an extra thank you. Because most of us have no need to accumulate more stuff, I try to give a homemade card and something consumable, often homemade food. If that’s not practical, a gift card for a restaurant, a show, or to some venue like a museum or public garden makes a thoughtful treat that can be enjoyed without adding a possession to the pile.

  2. I bought my dad a car this year (yes a Hallmark one) 🙂 I would much rather be in Michigan spending the day with him but I can’t. I think like every holiday the marketing is so in your face it isn’t even funny. But I don’t to buy my dad just anything. It’s a waste. And he doesn’t want me spending money if my money is tight, which it is. I’ll probably try to use my southwest points to fly home at some point this year. Thats my gift to my entire family. lol!

    1. You should be my best friend… ha! I’ve never heard of a Hallmark “Car” before but that’s one lucky dad you have lol. You made my morning Tonya! 🙂 I know my parents would rather see me home than getting any gifts.

  3. I can’t remember the last time I bought my Dad a Father’s Day gift as he doesn’t want anything and doesn’t need anything. He’s been that way since I was a kid. I will call him and talk to him. Any time he needs a hand, usually driving to an out of town appointment or what ever I drive him. He doesn’t like driving out of town, especially if he hasn’t been to that location before. He could get lost coming out of a phone booth with his poor sense of direction!! Doing little things like that is how I show him I love him. He’s not one for hugs or saying the words so this works with him.
    Back when my father-in-law was still alive, the last couple of years I bought treats for his dog as he loved that dog and we all knew he had terminal cancer. It made him so happy to see Mickey with the treats!!!! A small thing but it brought such pleasure to him…
    With the older parents not wanting or needing the ‘stuff’ it can be those little things that can mean so much more to the parent than the extra stuff they don’t need. We just need to put a little thought into the gift we give them, even if all it is is spending some time with them that can mean so much to them….

  4. I picked up a Loonie store Father’s Day card this week for my father. I didn’t buy a gift but I did get off my duff and drive out to his neck of the woods to have a lunch with him on Wednesday… at a time & place of his choosing. We had a great visit and we actually discussed how the older he gets, the less he needs and wants. I actually find the same thing myself. I think perhaps the hug we shared when parting was probably the best gift I gave him. He’s saving his card to open on Sunday and I told him that I would also give him a phone call that day. I am not a big expressionist of the words, “I Love You” but I believe my actions speak volumes. I make a point to see him every couple of months and I truly cherish my time with him and I believe he knows it. 🙂

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