Whether you need gifts for Christmas or other holiday parties, there isn’t much time left. Buying something online is going to cost a lot more because you will have to have it expedited now if you want it to get there on time. Trying to get into a store means not only finding the time to park and fight the crowds, you are probably going to have to plan to go to several stores if you are looking for a popular gift. If you are a last minute shopper and are at a bit of a loss, here are a couple of things you can do to cut down on the stress.

–        Look at local listings to see if anyone is selling an item you want close by. It will be much easier to park and get in and out if you find someone with a used PS4 who doesn’t want it any more than trying to get one in a store. You may be able to get a lot more for your money, especially if you wanted to make a major purchase and have waited until the last minute.

–        Take time out of the work day to go, or better yet, go to a store early in the morning before you go into work. Stores are keeping much longer hours, and it will be much easier to get in and out in the morning that after work hours. Cutting down on the amount of time you spend in stores is the best way to save time and money, even if it means getting up earlier or taking a very early lunch break to be there when the store opens.

–        Gift cards may not be exciting, but everyone can use an Amazon gift card (or one of the many other shops – Amazon is just one of my family’s preferences). When you are on a tight budget and really need a new pair of pants or a new jacket, that gift card can mean not having to go without.

If you are going to a party with people you know well, they will probably appreciate something homemade if you have the time and skill. I frequently crochet toys for the children of family and friends, and those always end up being one of the most popular items, with the kids falling asleep holding onto them on the way out the door. It means thinking outside of the usual realm, but if you have a talent, it can mean so much more that you took the time to do something special instead of giving something that was clearly purchased at the last minute.

Be sure to keep up with all of the receipts and put them in a safe place until you can make the entries in PIMYU.  You may be too busy now to keep the entries up to date but you will need to do it soon.

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