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5 Ways to Stay Balanced & on Budget During This Holiday Shopping Season

December 8, 2009 in Life

Well if you’ve been reading the blog posts for the last 2 weeks, you know that December is De-Clutter Month.  During week 1 we identified all the  things on our things to do list that we have to get done to get ready for the holidays.  And of course shopping is a major thing on most of our lists.

Here are 5 ways to stay Balanced and on Budget during this holiday shopping season.

1. Shop Early. It’s extremely satisfying and rewarding complete your holiday shopping before the actual holiday. You eliminate nearly all of the holiday stress, unless of course, you have some big entertaining to do. Even in that case you can plan early so you know exactly what to do and when. While you might miss out on some of the holiday deals by shopping early, the truth is that there are sales all the time if you just look.

2. Write a Shopping List. Pre planning your shopping will help you stay organized and on budget. Make a list of every person that will be receiving a gift from you. Also, list other items you need to shop for such as decorations or food items. Give yourself a preliminary budget for each item.  Remember that children sometimes place value in the “number” of presents they receive. While it’s a good idea to teach them that it’s the gift and togetherness that matters, you probably don’t want to have drastic differences in the amount of presents that each child gets.

3. Get In and Out of the Stores. If you must shop during peak times, try to have some ideas about the items you’re looking for. If you’re shopping with a friend and the line is super long, you can even have a friend wait in line while you shop. This will help you to “get in and out” without having to spend most of your time in long lines.  If you must shop alone try getting to the store at the time of opening. As long as they’re not advertising door busters, you shouldn’t have the problem with long lines.

4. Shop Online. Shopping online can be a great alternative; you might not even need to go into a store at all. If you’d rather see the items before shipping, you can even shop at your favorite store online and then set up in-store pick up. Shopping online is great for comparison shopping and for staying on budget.

5. Shop Safe. Whether shopping online or in-store, you need to remember to stay safe. When you’re shopping in-store remember to keep your credit cards safe and if you’re paying cash, don’t bring all your cash out of your wallet at once. Shopping online is safer than you might think, but it’s still important to use your instincts and shop smart.  Major retailers have plenty of safety measures established to ensure a safe shopping experience. If you’re unsure about the site you’re shopping on, do some more research into the company and make sure that they’re using secure carts.

Remember to stay Balanced and stay on budget.  The Holidays are a time for giving but remember, you don’t always have to give a  gift.  Your time is the most special gift you can give.

Happy Shopping and Be Balanced!!

Deona

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