Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Black Shopping Weekend

Yes, I was out holiday shopping this past Saturday & Sunday---along with millions of other Americans. I was traveling back to Colorado on Friday, so I skipped the busiest day, Black Friday. I confess I wasn't at any malls, though. I like to shop the individual retailers like Macy's, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Toys 'R Us, Penneys, Old Navy, and others. Of course, I also do cyber shopping online in addition to trekking out to the big stores in my search for holiday gifts.


I discovered a few years ago, that I could actually purchase everything on my list during the 3-day weekend and get it all done. Not counting the cyber shopping. Yes, I know I'm a little weird, but chalk it up to my over-active organized streak. Product of the Left Brain, I'm sure. It takes concentrated effort, but it's doable. Call me crazy---but I don't mind making the effort. And to tell the truth. . .I like getting it all done. Then I can turn my attentions to the really fun part of the holidays---Holiday Baking!


The hardest part is getting all my adult children to give me gift suggestions before I hit the stores. Several years ago, it was like pulling teeth. They'd say they'd email or text, then they'd forget. Finally, I hit upon the perfect strategy: Fuzzy Slippers. It's a family joke. One year my mom sent a really strange pair of fuzzy wuzzy slippers to one of my daughters for Christmas and they were so funny to look at, we've made jokes about them every since. Even my mom thought it was funny. Bless her heart.


So, I use the threat: "Tell me what you want, or it's Fuzzy Slippers for you!" Works like a charm. They always cough up a suggestion after that. Hey. . .we moms learn to be tricky early on. We have to be to stay one step ahead of the kids. :)


This year I didn't even need the 3 days because several of them asked for specific gift cards. Always sure to please. And it helps me stay within my gift budget. Yes----that's the accountant in me.


Tell us---were you out shopping on the Black Weekend? Are you trying to keep on a budget?

22 comments:

Linda McDonald said...

Nope, no shopping at all over the weekend. Didn't even look at one advertisement this year. But, it does help that my siblings and I decided not to exchange gifts this year. We didn't last year either, and just had a big Christmas party and visited with everyone and it was great. So, my shopping list is shorter now, and for the most part I just buy gift cards. I'm glad you had fun with your shopping!

Linda Leszczuk said...

I shopped from home. Gotta love on-line shopping.

Tonya Kappes said...

Ummm. . .NO! I don't go anywhere near a mall or shopping center the weekend after Thanksgiving. No deal is that good.

Bookwoman said...

No. I didn't brave the madness this year, but I did work on several gift projects. I made an adorable journal for a young cousin using scrapbook paper and one of those marbled composition books, I painted several wine glasses and coffee mugs and I finished a shawl and began work on a shrug. As for the gift buying, I try to spread it out over the year. And I often give books as gifts so I usually buy them when they are released. It's easier on my budget that way and it was nice to sleep in over the weekend when everyone else was fighting the cold temps and crowds here in Colorado Springs.

Beverly (AKA Bookwoman)

Kristine said...

No Black Friday shopping for me! If I were crazy enough to try, I am convinced it would've ended with me in cuffs or a straight jacket. Either way, it would not have been conducive to the holiday season. LOL! I have been good about sticking to a budget of sorts, though. I did nearly all my shopping online and made sure to get things on sale or with free shipping promotions. We also made the decision to just buy less this year, because our kids have everything already. It seemed wasteful to continue on with the over spending during this time of year. And it allows us to give to more worthy causes that DO need this time of year... like the ACS, the Arthritis Foundation, Salvation Army, etc.

Maggie Sefton said...

Linda McDon---That holiday party sounds great. Last year I got as close as I could when three of my four daughters could come back home to Colorado for the holiday. It was wonderful!!

Linda Les---I love to shop online, too. So easy. But when I'm shopping for clothes for my young granddaughter I have to see it up close to make sure it's what she'd like. She's got so tall, I have to check the lengths of jeans, etc.

Maggie Sefton said...

Tonya---I hear you. Actually, I did save a nice amount with the Penney's 15% off coupon. :) Helps me stay on a budget.

Anonymous said...

i try to have my shopping done before the mad mad crush that last few weeks before the actual event of christmas. christmas cards go out the day before thanksgiving. then i can concentrate on visiting friends and family without worrying about what i need to do yet. or maybe it's because of the job i had that tended to leave me no time to shop between thanksgiving and christmas?! i'm retired now, but old habits are hard to break. have a merry and a happy!!!

CindyD said...

I didn't shop over the weekend because the crowds are so crazy. Years and years ago, before it was called Black Friday, I always went with my father to do his Christmas shopping. I do miss him especially that day.
Anxious to hear about your Christmas baking.

Maggie Sefton said...

Bookwoman---Wow. . .I am impressed. Those sound like great gifts. Good for you! I knitted pretty alpaca woolen winter scarves for my girls years ago when I first started knitting. I am finishing a cute knit hat for my little 3 yr old granddaughter. It's a great pink & white cotton which is perfect for knit hats because cotton stretches to fit the child's head.

Hey---I'll be signing books in Colo Springs Sunday Dec 12th. BORDERS, Colo Springs South at 1pm & BORDERS Colo Sprgs North about 3pm. Gotta allow time for travel between those shopping ctrs. :)

Maggie Sefton said...

Kristine---LOL about your getting cuffed in the midst of Black Friday. And good for you for staying on your budget. I echo your comments about not overspending. All of us, I think, are cutting back this year. Either a little or a lot. The economic slump is still here. Also, I second your actions on helping those less fortunate. I make that a part of my budget as well.

Bookwoman said...

I'm so glad you are going to be in the Springs. I missed some of your Colorado signings over the summer because the stupid Army sent us to Missouri only to bring us right back to Colorado Springs after two months. Then I found out you were going to be in Round Rock and talked my "mom by choice" into going to the signing and getting a book for me. She reads mysteries, but not cozies and I was sort of hoping to get her hooked on cozies. She was very interested in the information you all shared about your writing processes, but I think she's still a die hard thriller fan. But yay! now I can meet you in person! Sometimes I wish I knew how to knit. So many of the beautiful patterns I run across are for knitting rather than crocheting. My 16 year old son has agreed to accept a hat/scarf as one of his Christmas presents this year. He's a teen and fashion is important - even to boys - so I had to get his approval first. Looking forward to seeing you on the 12th.

Maggie Sefton said...

Anonymous---Boy, are you organized! I take my hat off to you. That's a wonderful schedule. And I agree about old habits, but that's a good habit you've got there.


Cindy D---That's a lovely memory about your father. And I agree about the crowds. But the crowds were much less on Sat & Sun here in Ft. Collins. I think Friday is the crazy day. I don't miss shopping on that day at all, and now I know I can get the retail shopping done on 2 days. Then cyber shop!

Maggie Sefton said...

Bookwoman---Hey, that's great! Are you closer to the Colo Sprgs North or Colo Spgs South shopping centers? I'm going to have to leave that South signing about 2:45 in order to get to the North shop ctr in time to start a little after 3:00pm.

You can email me at maggie@maggiesefton.com and put Colo Spgs Dec 12 in the subject line. We can coordinate better via email.

signlady217 said...

My mom and I went out for just a short time on Friday, but I only bought a couple of DVDs. I tend to shop all year round, so all my Christmas stuff is usually done early. Just need to mail two boxes off to a friend and her kids. All my decorating is done, too. We were out of town for Thanskgiving, so I did the Christmas decorating early. Christmas cards are done and ready to mail, and most of the baking is done. Just have a few things to do Saturday morning because our annual Christmas party is that night. After that, it's just relax and enjoy the rest of the season! :)

Gayle Carline said...

Oh, I did shopping, and it was black - at least there was a black cloud over my head. First, my 13-year old minivan broke a little plastic part that expelled all the coolant and cost about $300 to repair. Then, the cold SoCal winds blew thru, knocking over our very dilapidated wooden fence. We were planning on fixing it in January. Turns out, it won't wait until then.


Christmas presents? Yeah, I'll get to those...

Peacecat said...

I love Black Friday shopping. I'm fortunate to live in a small town that is still within an hour or so drive to several major shopping malls. While many people drive that hour to the big malls, I'm able to enjoy a relatively leisurely day shopping the local small malls. I too like to get the majority of my gift shopping done on this weekend. To me it feels like kicking off the holiday season in the spirit of giving.

Maggie Sefton said...

signlady---Whoa! You've got your holiday shopping done, the decorating done, the Christmas cards finished and ready to go out, and the holiday baking. You should get an award for organization. Enjoy your Christmas party. Our family had a Holiday Open House every December for years and years when we were in the university community. We loved it. I love to cook and all my girls learned to cook early so they could help me with ALL that food. And when they were teenagers they got to wander about with trays of goodies and mingle with the guests. A lot of work, because all the Christmas decorating had to be done too. Mem-o--reeees.

Maggie Sefton said...

Wow, Gayle---You've had a lot land on your plate lately. Why don't you just tell everyone you're making holiday goodies for gifts this year. I consider all those packages of Chocolate Mint Fudge, Gingersnap cookies, Chocolate Rum Balls, Cranberry Orange Nut Bread, and all that to be Christmas gifts. They're actually the special items, when you think about it. We've made those ourselves. Give yourself and your wallet a break. Take care.

Maggie Sefton said...

Peacecat---That's a great way to look at it. You're absolutely right. We ARE shopping so we can GIVE gifts. Good stuff.

Miki Willa said...

This year, I am making all our gifts. I have done collage books, collages, and quilts. It has been much more rewarding than standing in long lines and trying to find parking places. I think this is going to become our tradition.

Maggie Sefton said...

Good for you, Miki. I used to make a lot of homemade gifts, but just can't find the time anymore with the writing demands. Hurray to you for continuing your great tradition.