This may sound crazy, but I start my shopping the day after Christmas. yes, I brave the lines of people who are returning their unwanted/wrong size/wrong color/whatever reason gifts to take advantage of the sales/bargains, mostly KMart and Walmart. I will frequent the stores for days, looking for even more markdowns, stashing my finds in a bin in my closet that all know to stay out of! I keep my eyes open for specials/sales. if it's at KMart, it goes into layaway. if not, I make sure I have the monies for the item.
Yep, my shopping for the holidays goes year round. I will go to thrift stores for table linens, holiday decorations, whatever catches my eye, bc that is where the real bargains are, and garage sales, which I frequent as soon as the season allows. I have learned over the years that one man's junk is another man's treasure! very true!
I shop with my 2 BFF's mostly at the thrift stores and garage sales. We have loads of fun together, always laughing at who spent more or who bought the most, got the best bargains. We carry a list of what we are looking for, which helps prevent duplicates. They know what I need, as do I for them. I shop at used book stores too, as I have found some great finds for my reading friends/family, saving loads of money there. We have a flea market here that I go to for the Italian charms, $1 each, for my girls and my friends who I have been buying for a couple years now. Most other shopping I do myself, unless my family wants to join me, then it depends on what I am shopping for.
I do this to make life easier as the holidays approach.