Wednesday, November 13, 2013

POST #998: JANIE JUNEBUG'S TOP TEN CHRISTMAS SHOPPING TIPS

Gentle Readers . . . and Maxwell,

Don't even think of giving me a hard time about bringing up the C word because John Gray used it last week at Going Gently, a blog you should read if you want to laugh and feel good.

I'm talking C word to be of assistance to you because I think I'm done with my Christmas shopping, and I figure the rest of you can use some help.

Look at the way the woman in this photo is carrying all this crap and smiling. The only reason to go out shopping and carry around a bunch of crap and smile is if you bought it all for yourself. The hell with everyone else.


But if you feel, as I do, that some pleasure can be gained from giving gifts to friends and relatives, then do as I do:

10. If you haven't started shopping yet, then you might as well give up.

9. Another option is to start shopping now, as in the minute you finish reading this post.

8. Make a list, check it twice, don't give to the naughty, only the nice, because the naughty are all those bastards who have been rude to you all year.

7. Shop online as much as possible, but make sure you use reputable sites, such as Amazon.

6. Consider gift cards for people who don't like anything and are never satisfied, or maybe you don't know what they need or want. A grocery store gift card can be very welcome.

5. If you must enter a store, do it now. I went in a few stores to purchase a couple of things I couldn't find online. I did it about 10 days ago. From now on, the only store I will enter until after Christmas is the grocery store, and I'll go there only because Willy Dunne Wooters likes to eat. I don't care if I eat.

4. For people you like a lot, consider personal handmade gifts. Some pretty cool etsy shops are out there: Jenny Matlock's handpainted signs at http://www.etsy.com/shop/OffonMyTangent?ref=em; Amanda Ax's beautiful, well-made jewelry at LaylasTrinkets; and adorable Geek Chic and cartoon character aprons, pot holders, and make-up rolls at Haute Mess Threads. (By the way, I'm not receiving anything for promoting these shops.)

3. If you have time and want to do something sweet, bake a gift, such as Christmas cookies or a pie (Not you, Mayor Gia; I love you, but your baking looks kinda iffy to me). If you think you can't bake till the last minute because you have to give baked goods while they're fresh, "then you've got another think coming, ole girl" (My mom said that all the time. I HATED IT, BUT SHE'S STILL IN MY HEAD AFTER SO MANY YEARS DEAD). Lots of cookies can be frozen and then put in pretty tins for delivery about a week before Christmas.

2. If you can't afford to buy gifts, then win them at giveaways. Lots of bloggers have giveaways. You can vote for Nicki Elson in a jousting tournament that M. Pax is having by commenting at http://mpaxauthor.com/. Vote for Nicki by using the words "Lady Elson," "Divine," and "Three" in your comment and you'll be entered to win some cool stuff. Linda at Practical Parsimony  also is having a giveaway. Of course, you can't exactly count on winning stuff in a giveaway, so have a backup plan, such as admitting the truth: I love you, but I can't afford to buy gifts this year. You can find good prices on ebay, too. Don't tell The Hurricane, but I'm giving her a book by Anna Quindlen, autographed by Ms. Anna Quindlen, that I purchased on ebay for 1.99 plus shipping. She won't care that the book is used since it's autographed and in excellent condition. Last year I wanted to give Favorite Young Man all The Sopranos DVDs. He'd never seen that show. Can you believe it? I saw the complete collection on Groupon for a good price, but looked on ebay and found them brand new for half the cost of the Groupon. When buying on ebay, look at the sellers' ratings: Do they ship quickly? Do they describe products accurately?

1. Donate to a charity in someone's name. Many charities will send cards to people, saying "A Gift Has Been Made In Your Honor." You can look online to find reputable charities. Making a donation is especially good for people who have children, whether they're making the gift, or it's made in their honor. It's never too soon to learn about kindness.

0. DO NOT GIVE A DOG OR CAT FOR CHRISTMAS, ESPECIALLY TO CHILDREN. Puppies and kittens look awfully cute among the wrapping paper on Christmas morning, but animals require a lifetime commitment. Don't expect kids to be responsible for complete care of a pet. If you want a dog and/or cat, wait until after Christmas, and then ADOPT.

So now you have a general idea of how I get my Christmas shopping done so easily, but know this for next year: I start during the summer. When I see something that would make a good gift, especially if the price is right, I snatch it up. The gifts are in my closet. I'll be mailing presents soon. I hope to be done mailing gifts by the week after Thanksgiving. Christmas cards (I don't send many) should be in the mail by Dec. 10th.

All righty, then. Get out there and complete your tasks. You have five minutes to make a list before you self-destruct.


Infinities of love,

Janie Junebug


31 comments:

  1. Hi Janie .. I tend to buy as I go during the year - when I find something appropriate .... taking care is the thing isn't it ..

    Giving to charity and those who are homeless ... and now to the Philippines Disaster Fund ... we need to help others too ...

    C-time is always a time of excess - I try and not do the excess bit ... cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I, too, like to avoid excess. Shopping in advance helps me do that. I don't want to engage in a flurry of last-minute purchases.

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  2. Last year 99% of our Christmas was done on-line. It will be the same this year. I hate being in the mall with all those people. They walk slow, stop on a dime and are just a pain in the ass. They should step aside like Moses parting the sea when I walk through the malls. After all, it is all about me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it's about you, but it's about me, too. Can't stand malls.

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  3. I am just getting started. Thanks for the tips.

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  4. Replies
    1. Drink and shop online. Drunk shopping can lead to spending too much, however, so be careful.

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  5. Yes, we have lots of prizes through the Realms Faire, including a Kindle. A neighbor gave my stepson a kitten one year. I ended up with two and they are very much my cats now. I've had them 17 years and am very glad of it. I was angry at first, but am glad I got over it. lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so glad you love the kitties, but the neighbor should have asked you first. Naughty neighbor.

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  6. Yes, ma'am. I do like online shopping & do everything I can at Amazon. I only ever had one year of very disciplined shopping -- my son's birthday is tomorrow and the year he was born I was not only shopped, but wrapped & tagged by Nov. 14. Ahh, that was a very good year. I don't know why can't manage to do that without the impending deadline of a baby coming out of me.

    Thank you for the mention for Lady Elson. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Put a basketball under your shirt and pretend you're about to give birth. Happy Birthday to your son.

      Delete
  7. Last yea Mes. C. and i couldn't think of gifts for each other so we treated ourselves to a Keurig coffee maker. Best gift we ever got. Have no idea what we'll do this year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Willy Dunne Wooters had Christmas bonus gift cards for the past two years and couldn't figure out how to use them. You'd better believe I got the money from them. I put it towards Mrs. Roomba and a Keurig. Willy Dunne Wooters loves his k-cup coffee, and I love my K-cup dark chocolate hot cocoa.

      Delete
  8. Completely agree with number #O - Animals should 'never' be given as Xmas presents. The are not 'gifts' after all. They are far more precious than that.

    Also love number # 8 - so true!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Giving an animal for Christmas is kind of like saying, Here, take this child and raise him.

      Delete
  9. I knew I loved you. :0) I worked retail for YEARS so the last place I want to be after Nov 1st is the mall, unless of course it has nothing to do with shopping and more to do with delicious buttery movie popcorn.

    That said, I am also done with my part of the shopping list. Sure, there will be some last minute gifts for the kids as things pop up, but the basics are done, as in I could have "C" tonight and not panic.

    Today I picked up some gift cards for my work sub carriers, and movie passes for my mailman.... he still likes his wife and loves the occasional date night for free... and they don't have kids yet, so he's enjoying the freedom while he can. :) Otherwise, I'm all done...

    ...and everyone that knows me, hates me just a little more now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I certainly don't hate you. I admire you. You are a woman after my own heart. Isn't life easier when you deal with the shopping early and you can sit back and relax a bit while everyone else runs around? Or use the time to play games with the boys or bake gluten-free cookies with them.

      Delete
  10. Best C list ever. I really really like and agree with number 0.

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  11. People down here are CRAZED already at the malls and such. You'd think a hurricane was lurking close by, the way they are clogging stores and slinging things possessively into their baskets. Love your list. But those grinches in the stores...oy vey.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe all the shopping is a sign that the economy is improving, or maybe it's a sign that people are nuts and always will be nuts!

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  12. LOL. "Look at the way the woman in this photo is carrying all this crap and smiling. The only reason to go out shopping and carry around a bunch of crap and smile is if you bought it all for yourself. The hell with everyone else."

    I haven't started my shopping.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You must start today, Peaches. Place at least one order online, or if you have something specific in mind in a store, go get the item. Make sure you're in and out of any store quickly. Know what you want (remember your list?). Don't browse, unless you do it for yourself and you're enjoying it.

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  13. Janie, these are great suggestions!! And I even use one of them already!! PHEW! That would be number 1. I started a few years ago to give to my favourite charity in the name of each family member. Hey, gifts are great but do most people really need all this stuff? there are others who need it more.
    I do like the online shopping I must say and yes Amazon is excellent...and FAST!
    Thanks for this Janie.
    Jim

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not at all surprised that you donate to charity, Jim. You are that kind of guy.

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  14. Tim only said on Friday night when he gave me my birthday present that he was so thankful for gift cards since he had no idea what to get me for my birthday and now I get to go shopping................I have 95% of my Christmas shopping done already..........

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  15. Thank God I can win all my Christmas gifts in giveaways. I never knew that before. Consider my shopping complete. Thanks Miss Junebug!! You're a lifesaver!

    -andi

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  16. I am just getting started for my Xmas and New Year shopping. Thanks for your tips before my shopping.

    ReplyDelete

Got your panties in a bunch? Dig 'em out, get comfortable, and let's chat.