A Stress Free Christmas – Part 6: Christmas Shopping

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In Part 6 we will be making a start on the often dreaded Christmas shopping.  I will be pointing out the benefits of getting started early (as if you need them!) and looking at how you can take advantage of the convenience of shopping online, while still enjoying the festive feeling of perusing the shops on the high street.

So, get your Christmas Shopping list ready, pick up your purse and let’s hit the shops!

5 Reasons to Shop Early

I can’t imagine anyone really needs convincing of the merits of starting early, but just in case, here’s a bit of motivation to get you running to your Christmas shopping list!

1) Nab all the good stuff while it’s still in stock

It’s always so disappointing to go around the shops the week before Christmas and realise that all that’s left on the shelves are the things that were rejected by those who came before…

2) Miss the hellish queues and crowds

We’ve all been there… aching feet, banging head, fingers nearly cut in two by all the heavy bags. Possibly a tired, grumbling child or two (or spouse) in tow… Every shop playing the same Christmas carols that at first you found festive and charming but which now just add to your growing fury..  The queues are so long that you’re just grateful if you can see the checkout from where you’re standing. Sad times.  Sad, unnecessary times.  Get in there early people!

3) Spread the cost over a few months

In my disorganised days, year after year, I would be left having to buy ALL of my Christmas presents in one huge, stressful and EXPENSIVE shopping trip.   It is so much more manageable to buy a few bits here and there over the course of a few months.

4) Avoid nasty last minute panic

I’m going to paint you a little picture…  Little Johnny has been excitedly awaiting the arrival of Christmas since June because you’ve promised him that new bike with shiny bell and the red basket.  Only, when you finally get around to your shopping a few days before, they’re all sold out! NOOOOO! It’s too late to order one and frankly, little Johnny’s Christmas is ruined. Tut tut.

5) You too can be a Christmas boaster!

You know those Facebook updates I mentioned?  Well wouldn’t you like to be able to inspire that same kind of impressed resentment in your friends?

The Foolproof Christmas Shopping Plan

Step 1:  Hit the highstreet now!

I think one of the best ways to get yourself feeling festive is to have a day of Christmas shopping in October or November.  The shops are already stocking their Christmas goodies (for the most part anyway) but the crowds haven’t quite arrived so you’ve got first pickings!  Why not book yourself a whole day to hit your local high street and pick up a few of your first presents, whilst getting inspiration for others at the same time?  It’s also a good opportunity to pick up some Christmas cards and wrapping paraphernalia. Maybe treat yourself to a coffee and some cake, or if you’re feeling really frivolous, then a tasty lunch and a glass of vino (as long as it doesn’t impair your shopping skills of course)?

TIP: Remember to stick to your Christmas Budget!

Step 2: Finish off online

There’s no pressure to finish your shopping on your first trip.  It’s really more to enjoy the shops and get ideas.  Of course, if you see something perfect then get it but rest easy in the knowledge that what you don’t get now, you can get online later.  Hurrah!

Have your say

I can’t believe we’ve reached Part 6 already!  If you’ve been finding my Guide to a Stress Free Christmas useful then please do let me know by hitting like or adding your thoughts to the comments section.  Many thanks!

Take me to Part 7: Christmas Food & Drink Planning

Catch up:

Part 1: Christmas Budget

Part 2: Making Christmas lists & Checking them twice

Part 3: Picking Presents

Part 4: Pickling Presents

Part 5: Christmas Party Invites

Colette Broomhead

I am a 30 something mother of 2 little boys and I live with them and my husband in Nottingham. My passions are my family and friends, my kitchen, my cookery books and all things food and drink!

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