Holiday shopping can get stessful, but it doesn’t have to be. Making a plan, shopping early and limiting who to shop for are all ways to minimize the craziness.
By MAGDA AGUIRRE and MERCEDES PACHECO
The most wonderful time of the year is upon us, with that comes the stress of holiday shopping and wondering what to get everyone on a list that seems to grow and grow each day. There are a few tips to consider before letting panic sink in and overspending. First and foremost, set a budget and consider ways to cut costs with homemade gifts.
“I make sure to develop a plan that best fits my needs and my family’s needs,” Hanna Homfeld, an Amarillo College librarian, said. “As a child, saving my allowance to spend on my family helped me and taught me about budgeting, paying attention to the interests and needs of others and being thankful for family.”
Try narrowing down your list. There is no need to feel obligated to buy everyone you know a gift. Try narrowing down to a spouse or partner and close family members. Another thing to do would be compare prices. If you’re set on a specific gift idea for your special loved ones, try doing some research as to where to find a better deal. Look up multiple places where this item is found, do research and compare those prices.
Perhaps the idea of making a more personal gift would help with the budget. Something more heartfelt instead of it coming from a retail store. If you’re one of many stressed shoppers, homemade gifts might just be your saving grace.
Rummage through your house or search the internet for ideas. Craft stores saw increased interest in DIY (do-it-yourself) projects when COVID hit and the trend has continued. “People were bored and coming in for everything,” said Lisa Lopez, a Hobby Lobby associate, “There were men even learning to sew and women looking into refurbishing furniture.”
While some may think of only craft stores, other retail stores such as Home Depot and Lowes also get customers searching for materials to help put their DIY plans into action. One of the more popular items is lumber to make custom signs.
“We get all kinds of requests for different sizes of boards,” said Ken Wilhelm, a Lowe’s associate. “I’m amazed at the pictures these kids and adults show me of their finished products.”
Door signs for all seasons are one of the more popular gifts for crafters. They take different lengths of lumber, sand them down, paint custom words or messages, then decorate them to make their homes stand out. It’s a process that can be started with upcycled materials or purchasing new, the decision lies with the crafter. Even better is seeing the excitement on the recipient’s face.
These are just a few things to do to ease the stress of holiday shopping. Finally, when you have figured out a shopping plan, stick with it. Do not give in to the temptation. Let the ‘most wonderful time of the year’ stay that way.