Tuesday, October 9, 2012

7 Steps to take NOW for Holiday Shopping!

If you haven't already, it is time to start thinking about the holidays.  Starting now has so many benefits. First, by taking care of small things now, you will free up time to actually enjoy the holidays instead of being in a frenzied rush.  Secondly, by starting your shopping now, you can budget your money better.  You aren't hit all at once with large shopping bills.  And last, you can shop leisurely and find great deals, instead of purchasing something at a high price because you need it now.  

Steps you can take now are:
  1. List all the people you know now that you will be buying for.  And I mean everyone--not just family and friends.  Include teachers, neighbors, mail carriers, kennel workers, hair stylists...anyone that you give a gift too--no matter how small. 
  2. Determine your budget.  You may have an overall budget or maybe you allot so much in various categories, i.e. family, service workers, friends.  Whatever it is, figure it out now.  Having a budget will help keep you on task and not overspend.  
  3. Compile your Christmas card/holiday card list, making note of changes in address, crossing off people you no longer care to exchange cards with, and gathering addresses of new friends/family members.
  4. Start shopping.  Yes, seriously.  I know there are people on your list who you will want to wait till later to buy for, but if you look over your list, there are plenty of people you can buy for now.  If you give gifts to mail carriers, hair stylists, teachers and the like, there is no reason to wait till December to purchase gifts for them.  Get it taken care of now.
  5. Go ahead and wrap and label purchased gifts.  If you are concerned that you won't remember what is in the gift wrapping, attach a sticky note describing the item or photograph it.
  6. Start working on your Christmas cards.  You can purchase Christmas cards in the stores already. I saw some at Half Price Books a couple weeks back for great prices.  Purchase and start addressing.  Or, if you do a photo greeting card, figure out what photo you want to use or get one taken.  As soon as you have it, order your cards.
  7. If you know you will be hosting a holiday meal or party, begin planning for it.  Look through your cookbooks, magazines or online (especially Pinterest) for menu and decorating ideas.  Purchase any party supplies you may need.  
By taking steps now, you will have more time to do the last minute crazy things with much less stress and you will enjoy the holidays!


Julie Wood said...

I am going to have to cut out a lot of Christmas shopping this year because of medical bills! I am just going to send cards to outside family, and I am not going to be buying hardly anything for Christmas this year. I am okay with this,since my health is more important than some present!

Lisa Brown said...

Great list. I have not started yet, not sure when I will. Once I start, it will be done quickly, though.

Kelly Blackwell said...

Great tips. I never think about the planning needed for the holiday meals. This is a wonderful tip. It will keep me from going to just the same standbys. :)

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