They’re Fast Approaching

It’s Time to Get Your “Shop On”

Be Sure to Check Out Our Amazon Picks for Your Holiday Gift Giving and Holiday Entertaining Ideas

This is what a major department store looks like on November 1st here in Southern California. They’re ready, are you???

I know the real holiday season is still a couple of months away, but with the high inflation and gas prices going up, up and up it’s probably not too early to think about your gift giving.  I read where and people I have spoken with are worried about paying for this year’s gifts, and the vast majority of consumers are on edge.

A survey done by CNBC said about 40% or more of holiday shoppers said inflation is changing the way they shop, with most trying money saving strategies.  In fact they have coined the term “funflation” to emphasize just how expensive it has become to have fun, whether it be traveling, restauranting, concerts, or buying gifts for the upcoming holidays.

More than 1 in 10 started their shopping before the beginning of September, and half of the holiday shoppers plan to right after Halloween.  BankRate took a survey and this what they found:  INFLATION IS THE SCROOGE THIS YEAR.  

Although the two big holidays are not until the end of November and December, the start of the New Year is right behind, and most consumers are already concerned how they will afford this year’s gifts as prices continue to rise.  

Many studies show over 50% of the holiday shoppers said inflation is changing the way they will shop this year.  Many are shopping early.  I start after the New Year and buy a gift or two each month…I’ve always done it that way.  BankRate said many are buying fewer items or less expensive brands, using coupons, discounts and credit card rewards to offset costs.  

Photo by Pixabay (Pexels)

Shopping early and shopping sales this year will be the trick to find good deals.  Many said they would go further into debt buying gifts with their credit cards.  Is this really worth it???

Case in point.  When I was growing up, my family had lean years.  We would limit our gifts to one or draw names.  I visit our niece’s and nephew’s homes today and they have more gifts than I’ve ever seen.  Looking back, that one gift meant more to me than anything.  To add to the holiday spirit, we spent time baking, sharing time with one another, playing games and setting out for a family drive.  My memories are with those times, not so much the gifts.

Simpler times when families gathered around the kitchen to see who could out do each other with their baking skills. I was enrolled in Home Ec so I always did pretty well. Photo by Jonathan Meyer (Pexels)

But I’m not going to be guilty of “scrooging” here suggesting only one gift. My message is all about shopping, finding the best deals and making it a fun and enjoyable and stress-free experience. 

Here are 7 simple ways to get ready for holiday shopping and minimize the stress that goes along with it.

GET STARTED NOW.  Unless you’re into elbowing your way through the masses of the last-minute shopping throng, then get your butt out there and start gathering your special gifts while supplies last.  

PUT YOUR PLAN IN PLACE.  Start with a gift list and set your holiday budget, then start looking for deals.  

BLACK FRIDAY.  Yeah, I know, I said get out there early, and the exception would be the day after Thanksgiving.  There are always the Black Friday deals of the century that you just might want to take advantage of. 

Photo by Max Fischer (Pexels)

IF YOU HAVE THE MONEY.  And the budget has been set, and that perfect gift has been found at the price you want to spend, it makes sense to go ahead and buy it as soon as you can.  This will certainly lessen your stress the closer you get to the holidays.  

FETCH REWARDS.  If you’re out shopping, try this app to get points that are good toward free gift cards at stores such as Amazon, Target or Walmart to offset future purchases or give them as gifts.  Hmmm.  I’m looking into this one.

MAYBE A GIFT CARD.  When in doubt on what to buy, try a gift card where someone you know shops, be sure to place it in little gift bag or gift card holder.

Cyber Monday is actually November 27th, but you can probably find deals prior to that. Photo by Karolina Grabowska (Pexels)

AMAZON.  I saved the biggest and best for last.  Amazon has become the “go to” shopping experience right from your home or smart phone.  The list of items they provide is enormous, their pricing is fair, it doesn’t take any gas driving to the next store, and your gift is delivered right to your front door.  Yeah, OK, you’ve got to gift wrap it, but that’s the fun part.  While you’re at it, check out BoomerGal’s personal curated selection of “Seasonal Gifts” using our special link to Amazon.  

The ultimate shopping experience without leaving your home.

While you’re putting your list together, find other ways to cut back.  “Think about you can lighten your monthly spend by reassessing your bills.  There’s a good chance you’re paying for things you really don’t need.  One friend she started looking at all the subscriptions she was using, instead of five streaming down to one.  

If you don’t find the deals, others will and last-minute shopping will really bust the budget and the stress meter.  I call shopping these days the great scavenger hunt. 

I just wanted to share a few tips to help soften the load and help you make the upcoming holidays a little lighter and fun.  After all, once your shopping is complete, it still ain’t over.  Then it’s time to prepare for entertaining family and friends, traveling to spend time with family setting out on your own for a well-deserved vacation.   That’s why it’s a good idea to get your gift shopping out of the way earlier rather than later.

Maybe this year will bring families, friends and your loved ones closer, when it isn’t all about the gifts.  But I have a feeling gifts will always reign supreme when it comes to the holidays.  

If that’s the case, be sure to check out our Amazon picks for your seasonal gift giving.

“Yes, Virginia there is a Santa Claus.”    This is a line from an editorial by Francis Pharcellius Church entitled “Is there a Santa Claus?” which appeared in the New York Sun newspaper on September 21, 1987 and became one of the most famous editorials ever published.  

In everyone’s household there’s a Santa who does the shopping.  Your BoomerGal has always been the shopper in our family, and I’m always thrilled to do it and find the best deals possible and keep the holiday spirit alive.  

I’m Connie, your Number One BoomerGal hoping you find these tips helpful in your quest for the ultimate shopping experience. 

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