To be truly budget conscious, you should be on the lookout for holiday gifts all year long; however, even if you haven’t started your holiday shopping yet, you can begin grabbing some amazing deals at summer’s end and into early fall. If you think ahead, you can save hundreds of dollars on this huge expense.
Check out the following tips on what’s a steal:
If you attend lots of holiday parties, you probably take gifts with you to show your appreciation to the host/hostess. Great ideas for these thank you gifts include:
1. Freezer jam and fresh bread.
2. Margarita or another “fun” drink mix, paired with festive glasses.
If you think these might work for you, you can find these items for pennies on the dollar at the end of summer. Stock up on freezer jam supplies as soon as they go on sale. (You will need containers and fruit pectin). You can also buy delicious fruit now, and freeze it for use later. If you make and freeze the jam in October, it will be ready to be paired with a reasonably priced loaf of bakery bread in late December. Yum!
You may also wish to snap up end of summer margarita or whimsical glasses while they are clearance priced. Think two glasses per hostess gift. You will find drink mixes on sale during the end of August. If you check the expiration date, you can be assured that the mix will be fine until well after the holidays. Pair the glasses with the mix, and you will have a unique and appreciated gift.
Mom and Dad Gifts
If you are like me, you purchase several gifts for your parents to open at the holidays. And if you are also like me, you know what your mom and dad love! For example, I know my dad likes to wear lightweight, V neck sweaters with no pockets; therefore, when I saw one on clearance last weekend for $6.00, I snapped it up. I also know that my mom loves Lane calendars, so at the Borders “going out of business sale,” I purchased a calendar for 40% off or $9.00. Come Halloween, I plan to purchase chocolate for my dad – no, not the day before, but the day AFTER trick-or-treating. Chocolate freezes quite well, and when repackaged, it serves as an inexpensive, yet much appreciated gift. Keep in mind what your parents like, and buy when it is on sale.
Don’t forget to purchase summer clearance to use for children’s gifts. Sidewalk chalk, balls, games…all are discounted at the end of the season, so why not stock up on items that could also work at holiday time? Here’s another idea, since many stores offer school supplies at such low prices, consider buying crayons, paper, glue, markers, and then pair with art paper for the budding Monet in your family.