Every year, Christmas feels like it gets more expensive.

It seems on years where the economy seems to be doing well, retailers of all shapes and sizes seem to cash in on everyone's good fortune. When economic times are down, they all seem to raise prices anyway, knowing you're going to spend money because it's Christmas. They know they've got you over a barrel.

Obviously, this year will be no exception. Inflation is the word on almost everyone's lips, all the time right now. Politics aside, that's not something that's going to change before the holiday season really gets grooving. The whole thing... even now. Halloween candy is crazy expensive. As will your Thanksgiving dinner and all its trimmings.

You're first expensive present for the family this year? The tree.

Like everything, inflation is going to hit the industry hard. Of course, maybe there will be some relief from local growers, who can cut out all the middle-men. But possibly, their prices may go up, just because they can. There's room to potentially raise their won prices a bit, and still be lower than other sources, according to WMTW.

But places like big box stores or home improvement stores, their trees will likely be significantly higher than last year. Increased fuel and shipping costs are the main factor in prices going up as much as 15% at the wholesale level. So it'll be at least that much higher for you and me.

This won't last forever. These things never do. the economy goes up, and it eventually goes down. Same with cost of goods. It certainly isn't good news to get as we roll into the holiday season. Because likely, everything else about Christmas will be vastly more expensive as well. All of a sudden the Grinch doesn't sound so bad, does he?

Instead of worrying about the cost of Christmas, here's 20 cheap and fun things to do this winter...

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