Holiday shopping made easy

09Dec11
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This is my Christmas wreath. You like?

Now here’s something you don’t hear someone say too often? “I love shopping for gifts during the holidays!”

But guess what?

In my case, it’s true!

I know it sounds crazy but I have mad holiday shopping skills. So if you want some tips on how to make this year’s shopping activities one of joy and not as much bah humbug, read on!

Recently Urban Barn, one of my favourite home decor stores, ask their blog readers to share their advice on staying stress-free over the holidays. I figured I’d take the time to also share that advice here since the moaning and groaning over holiday shopping has started and let’s be honest people, the retail rush has not yet begun so you still have time to make big things happen!

Shopping advice

  • Plan it out – I use Evernote throughout the year to keep tabs on potential holiday gift ideas for my family and friends. Then closer to Christmas, I plan a strict budget that I try to stay within and match the up with the gift ideas I have tagged in Evernote.
  • Do your research – Then I research my purchases to find the best deal (whether it’s in store or online). This helps me figure out all the places I need to physically visit to pick the items up. And from this list, yes you guessed it, I plan the most efficient route using a combination of transit, driving and carpooling to carry my packages home.
  • Shop til you drop - Once you know what you need to buy and the best route to save on transportation costs, get out there and make it happen!
    • Handy Tip - Take a random weekday morning off (like a Wednesday morning) and go shopping. The stores are emptier so you won’t have to fight the crowds and you’ll also have time to wrap and hide the fantastic gifts you just picked up. ;)

Want more? You got it!

  • Being a gracious guest – What about being the perfect guest for all those holiday parties you’ll be invited to?
    Make sure when you make your shopping list in the planning stage, you include a number of unisex stocking-stuffers like bottles of wine, vases, appetizer plates, picture frames, candle hurricanes, cheese sets, etc. Buy a few of those, wrap them up and keep a few gifts at home and at work so if you get invited to a last minute holiday party you’re always ready with a fab host/hostess gift without the stress.

    • Handy Tip - I make sure each gift has different wrapping paper to I can easily tell them apart. Before I wrap the gifts I lay them on the floor on top of the paper they’ll be wrapped in and take a picture. This is an easy way to make sure I pick the perfect gift depending on the occasion. Have leftovers? Use them as office gifts, give them to neighbours or save them for next year. If you wrap these items in festive but neutral paper (like silver or gold metallic) they can be used as year round party gifts for any occasion!
      Remember to email yourself a copy of the above picture or to upload it to Evernote so that way if the batteries on your phone ever die or you’re in a pinch, you can easily identify each gift.

Got any tips I left out? Keep em coming in the comments!

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One Response to “Holiday shopping made easy”


  1. 1 Pinterest – everything you need to know about the social networking site making a stir in 2012 « Famous Last Words

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