Chances are you’ve already been bombarded by fifty different sale emails for this year’s Holiday shopping extravaganza. I think it actually started the day after Halloween this year, meaning Black Friday has taken a back seat to a day which extends the shopping season even further backwards into the beginning of November. I will gracefully decline to go on a rant about how people probably spend too much time and money on gifts and less on what really matters (insert cheesy Christmas movie moral here), but I will offer a few pointers for reducing the already nutty holiday shopping and money blowing stress that ensues during the “Most Wonderful Time of the Year”.
Set a Budget – If you don’t, you may suffer a mild heart attack when your credit card statement arrives. Without a maximum amount, you may find yourself spending willy nilly and not even totaling your purchases up whatsoever which, in all likelihood, will haunt you later.
Shop Early – This memo may be a little late in the season, but if you’re already out doing something else, take a second to look around in case you see anything for your gift list while you’re there. Keep a designated place at home where you store all gifts you’ve purchased early so they don’t go missing when you need them.
Make and Bake – Handmade is always more personal and the internet is absolutely brimming with easy and inexpensive DIY gift ideas. These are especially great because it’s so simple personalizing a gift you’re making yourself. One simple point of caution – don’t get taken to the cleaners at the craft store. Keep your DIY’s as simple and thrifty as possible and stock up on Jo-Anns and Michaels coupons! Baked goods are another inexpensive gift option. Just remember to be aware of food allergies your gift recipients may have.
Be a Scrooge – Well, not really. But in a day and age where the idea of gifting has spiraled out of control, say no to gifts and write cards instead. Being thoughtful does not require deep pockets.
(photo credit: bluevelvetvintage.com)