Savvy Shopping can Save Your Sanity
Shopping can be a headache regardless of the time of year, but it can be a special nuisance around the holiday season if you don’t plan properly. Avoid the stress of the last-minute shopping frenzy with some forethought and planning. After the holidays have come and gone, you’ll be glad you took the time early on to prepare and plan.
The internet has become a shopping dream come true for many. Most likely your favorite retailer has its own website and offers online shopping, and many companies offer gift wrapping or a gift card and will ship directly to your gift recipient for you.
If you’re not internet-savvy or prefer to shop via catalog, that’s also an option if you plan early enough. Be sure to request catalogs from your favorite retailers and those of your friends and family by calling their customer service lines. Again, most catalog companies offer gift wrapping and drop shipping for your convenience. They’ll be happy to confirm shipping schedules and help you out should you need specific information about an item they offer.
Buying several of the same items, or ‘buying in bulk’ can make your shopping much easier. This is a great option for teachers, co-workers, neighbors, and the like. It’s a great way to shop for your kid’s friends, scout group, or sports teammates as well. If different colors, scents or patterns are available for the same type of gift, mix it up a little bit so that co-workers receive something just a bit different from you. This is a great option if you want to plan way ahead and hit the great bargains at the after-Christmas shopping sales. Just be sure to label whom you have each gift in mind for before storing them away for the next holiday season.
Personalization can be a very heartfelt and appreciated gift, and it doesn’t have to be expensive. If you have a personal computer at home, you can create personal stationery, turn a favorite photograph into a t-shirt decal, design a bumper sticker for someone, or even give your own gift certificates. Friends and family would especially cherish this type, as not only does it come from your heart, but things like dinner or a movie out, painting or pottery lessons together, or a drive to the beach for a picnic involves the best gift you could give, and that’s time with you. Create a special card to give with the gift, or wrap in a specially made gift wrap designed by you on the computer or by hand.
Home made treats make great gifts as well. Food items are always a hit, but even a personalized Christmas tree ornament, decorated trinket box or handmade placemat can be a hit. Make a list of the items you’ll need to put together food tins or make personalized ornaments and shop early so you’ll have adequate supplies on hand and enough time to complete your projects for gift giving.
Most importantly, remember the reason for the season. It’s not about how much money you spend. A simple, inexpensive gift can be tasteful, thoughtful, and appreciated by the recipient, and you’ll enjoy giving them even more.
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