We're all looking for ways to save money and as the holidays approach, I've been known to break out in a cold sweat thinking about how I'll juggle all the demands on our already stretched budget. It's tempting to consider simply whipping out the credit card every time you ring up a gift but that is simply delaying the pain.

Charging your holiday purchases will also make those gifts cost even more in the long run as you rack up interest charges month after month.

Let's explore some ways you can try to save a few bucks this holiday season.

1. Buy Used

There are websites — like Half.com — where you can find near-new books, DVDs and CDs. The prices are, as the website says, about half the price of buying the item brand new.

2. Lean on Friends

Looking to get a family photo taken but don't have the cash to hire a pro? Find a friend or family member that has a quality camera and ask them to help out. With the promise of a home-cooked meal or dessert, you can probably entice them to snap 15 minutes worth of photos of your clan to use as your family's holiday card.

3. Shop After Christmas

The holidays sometimes seem to last for weeks. If you know that you'll be having a get-together with some good friends a few days or weeks after Christmas, you might consider shopping for them after the holidays when items are on sale.

4. Kids Only

If you've got to look for ways to cut back on holiday spending, make a list of all the people you're buying for. Can you and your sibling agree to only buy for the children instead of each other? Can you ask friends if you can focus solely on the kids instead of gifts for one another?

5. Set Limits

You must set limits on how much you spend and encourage family and close friends to do the same rather than encounter any uncomfortable situations.

6. Gift of Time/Service

If times are tight, are there opportunities where you can offer to perform a service as a gift — if you're a masseuse, giving a massage, or a housepainter, offering to paint part of someone's house, or a carpenter, offering to fix something around the house?

7. Go Homemade

If you're handy, crafty or a renowned baker, you might consider making gifts, ornaments or treats to give out as gifts. In addition to being unique, it will show the receiver how much thought and time you put into their gift.

8. Stick to Your Budget

The most important thing that you can do while doing your holiday shopping is to set a budget and stick to it. Don't deviate. You've mapped out a plan for holiday spending and it's critical that you honor your commitment.