Sunday, November 28, 2010

A Final Word on Black Friday

Weekend Assignment # 346: Holiday Shopper

Ack! The holiday shopping season is upon us! What is your shopping strategy for this time of year? Do you spread out your shopping over weeks and months, or try to get it all done at once? Do you mostly shop online or in person? How heavily, if at all, do you rely on gift cards, gift certificates or plain old fashioned cash and checks?

Extra Credit: Do you enjoy shopping the Black Friday and after-Christmas sales?
I wouldn't say that I have a "strategy" for holiday shopping.  For most of the people I exchange gifts with, I wait for inspiration to hit.  It generally does.  Example:
My grandfather has been directing us more toward charitable gifting the last few years.  A couple of years ago, when he was a a docent at the Lincoln Park Zoo, I read about The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee.  Their gift shop had prints of paintings that one of the elephants did.  Funny little gift to open under the tree and contributing to the rescue of elephants.  He loved it. 
Besides rocking the gifts, I have another goal: to avoid setting foot in a shopping mall from Thanksgiving until New Years.  I do quite a bit online:
Barnes and Noble, Amazon, Toys R Us, Drs. Foster and Smith, FTD, these websites have all worked out nicely for me.  The deals can be found and I am not buying too many gift cards.
While I have never gone to Best Buy at 4am, I do believe I have lived the Black Friday experience enough times to know better.  This year, I didn't even leave the house until 4pm and that was only a one-stop.  Yesterday, when I hit Day 2 of the sales, I swear I spent more money on myself than on gifts. 
I am never at the sales on December 26, because that is when my family is at my house, opening the remaining gifts and eating pizza.  So I start those sales late, which is fine with me. 
Sometimes, it isn't about the deal.  It's about the thrill of the hunt.


John said...

To Do List:

1. Start Christmas shopping.
2. No, that's it. I think I'll be pre-occupied with 1 for awhile.

Anne said...

I don't imagine your family expects you to bake. But don't you have a niece to buy for? Get moving!

Karen Funk Blocher said...

Maybe it's the fact that hardly anyone I buy for is someone I see face to face more than once a decade, but I find it very hard to come up with non-generic gifts. Kudos to you - you seem much better at that than I!