Published: Nov 17, 2010 1:56 PM EST
Updated: Nov 17, 2010 10:56 AM EST

FORT MYERS, Fla.-A great article just came out on yahoo.com called "The five holiday savings tips you blew off last year".

In today's Common Cents, we'll vow to do better this year. Even if you manage to do just two of these tips, you'll spend less.

A contributor at yahoo.com suggests you revisit last year's expenses. Dig up your credit card statements for a horrifyingly accurate account of the November-December damage. Challenge yourself to spend less or at least not more than last year.

Second, make a list of gift-ees. Shopping with a list will keep you honest. Next to each person's name, write a few gift ideas and a budget.

Third, leave the credit cards at home. Credit cards are too convenient and studies show that people spend more and more impulsively with plastic.

Don't dawdle. Tis' the season for temptation and you'll likely buy a little something for yourself or go a little overboard. So get it done, or if the mall is too much temptation, shop online.

Finally, set a deadline for your shopping, wrapping, shipping and even house cleaning. You'll be a hero to your family if everything is done two weeks before the big day.