The other night, my husband and I took our two small children to a local mall to do some holiday shopping. I thought this would be fun. Apparently I was suffering from some sort of short-term delusional fantasy brought on by seeing holiday ads depicting cute, smiling children and sprinkled Christmas cookies. There was no leisurely strolling and window shopping for us. There was no relaxed sipping of hot chocolate while calmly meandering from store to store. Our experience consisted of a little one who would not move away from the toy store displays and flailed about in her stroller yelling, “Down! Down!” and an older child who incessantly begged to ride the rides, refused to try on Christmas dresses, and complained about how tired she was from walking (from the first moment we entered the mall).
After that, I’m all about on-line shopping.
If you’re like me, there are approximately three bazillion items on your to-do list. And yes, sometimes it’s fun to get out in the hustle and bustle and hit the stores. Those Black Friday “door buster” sales can give you a rush and a sense of adventurous bargain hunting. But sometimes it’s easier and simpler to sit at your comfy desk, make yourself a cup of tea, and click your mouse. No leaving the house. No futilely seeking an elusive parking spot. No standing in line. No enduring pushy people.
Make this holiday season easier on yourself when you can. You’re already running around like a crazy person, right? So get your grocery shopping done on line—no need to leave the house. Check out deals at your favorite online stores. There are a number of free shipping offers and Black Friday deals online. Take advantage of them. Plus, if you get your grocery shopping done online, you have more time for hitting the stores and taking advantage of Black Friday deals.
Yes, we have our favorite local stores, and we should spend our dollars to support our local economy when we can. We should also make life easier on ourselves when possible. Learn from my mistake: shop online and save yourself a stop or two so that you can do in-person holiday shopping in a relatively relaxed way—maybe even while sipping a cup of hot chocolate.