Shopping for Christmas

Just returned from mine and Bob’s annual Christmas shopping excursion.  We take out a day during the holiday season each year to shop together for our family for Christmas presents.  It’s a massive undertaking–we not only shop for our girls but also for his immediate family and mine.  I have a sister, brother-in-law, a niece, and both parents, while he has a sister, brother-in-law, three nephews, and both parents.   We also adopt a Christmas Tree child or two every year.  So we do our bit to stimulate the local and national economy every year while shopping.

Today we hit six different stores and were finished with them by 1:30 p.m. before filling up the trunk and having to go home and unload everything.  Bob’s now gone to yet another store to get some leftover gifts that we can only find there.  We’re still short a few gifts that we plan to order online tonight, and I have run out of ideas for mine and Bob’s father,  So we will take another day later on and see what can be found looking at some other stores probably next Friday.

Typically we shop all year for gifts–we try to buy some on summer vacation depending on where we go.  One year we really scored big–we went to Gatlinburg, TN at the same time they were holding a huge regional craft show and got about half of our shopping done there, finding some truly unusual gift items.  We also have a statewide crafts show that we usually attend, but the past few years we haven’t had as much luck there since the same vendors come every year, and we’ve about exhausted our families’ appetite for their offerings.  But this year we had only done some hit-and-miss shopping, so the haul today was truly epic.

Shopping for our girls is often the easiest shopping we do–we usually don’t ask them what they want.  We collect hints throughout the year from things they say, then we fill in the blanks with things we want them to have.  🙂  Then we have traditional gifts we give at certain ages, such as a smartphone at fifteen or a designer purse at eighteen.  Just one of the ways we have found to keep the bills manageable and keep me from spinning out of control with the check book and credit card :).

This year looks pretty good for everyone to enjoy thus far–we’ve bought some useful gifts as well as some that are unusual or simply for fun.  Bob going with me makes the whole trip a great adventure instead of a chore on the list–we usually have a lunch date during the day, and we always enjoy that.  One of the few holiday events I don’t have to stress over :).

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