I finished my Christmas shopping this weekend. I did break some of my holiday shopping rules so I thought I’d write them down for posterity’s sake!
Holiday Shopping Rules
- Be like Santa – make a list – I decide what I am going to buy each person and set a budget for each item. I have it all figured out before I hit the stores – the cat included! Shopping for a specific thing takes less time than “shopping”.
- I shop online whenever possible – if I know the brand, size etc, I let the magic elves at Amazon (or wherever) do the work for me. The internet is a great place to do research, compare prices and ship where I want it. I can also shop on my time and not be a slave to store hours. I was ready to be out the door at 8 am on Saturday but had to wait till 9 for Best Buy to open.
- If I have to go to the store, I go early in the day. The early bird catches the worm and the shortest lines. I went out on Saturday morning and it was peaceful. Sunday afternoon was a mad house!
- I set a deadline and stick to it. No more shopping after X date.
- Resist the urge to buy “one more present”. This is often a side-effect of getting my shopping done early. I call it present-creep. This is the rule I keep breaking! See rule #4
- I make many of the presents I give to co-workers or friends who can buy what they want. The internet is full of great ideas for “mason jar gifts” – I’ve seen some very clever ones this year. And the best part of making these kinds of gifts – you are at home. You can still do the laundry, cook dinner or help with homework. (OK you may have to eat in front of the TV because the dining room table is covered with stuff but you are not our fighting lines and traffic). If these are not food items, you can make them in June! And it is a great way to get kids involved.
- Inventory my bags, bows, and paper before you go shopping. I keep generic tags and brown paper gift bags on hand that I can stamp or decorate for the season. After a long day at work, I really don’t feel like stopping at the store for gift wrapping supplies. Oh and I save bags from the previous year to reuse.
- I schedule a day of rest – no shopping or holiday activities – just rest! This is easier if I follow rule #4
Have you finished your shopping? Do you have any tips that make shopping easier and less stressful? Or maybe you are one of those people who love all the holiday shopping atmosphere. Share your thoughts on holiday shopping.