Right after I got married I ran across these Christmas China and fell in love with them. Unable to afford such a large purchase for each item, much less for a complete set, I devised a plan. Every year the day after Christmas I would revisit the stores and purchased what ever they had in those dishes. Half price was the best way for a struggling mom to afford them. Within 5 years I had my complete set.
The challenge was fun. My out of state mother in law, my mother and sisters also joined in the search. Twice, I received those hard to find pieces as gifts for my birthday also in December. This was one way to really get what you want even it the opportunity opens it self up only once a year. Occasionally I will shop resale shops and online stores throughout the year just in case more of them show up.
Christmas comes every year at the same time. No surprise, so make it possible to have a great one without breaking the bank. Shopping for next year, this year doesn’t take much planning but the pay off is tremendous.
- Christmas wrapping, ribbon and boxes:, I love sales on wrapping. Gather colors that are not necessarily Christmas for other holidays too. Solid colors are great, silver and white for weddings etc.
- Christmas tags-You can get them cheap however you can get them free. Take the Christmas cards your received this year and cut the signature side off leaving the front side only. Hole punch and tie with ribbon to new package.
- Perfume and bath gift sets: Purchase at low prices and hold back for birthdays and next Christmas.
- Candles sets: great for new home owners.
- Homemade gifts: There are thousand of ideas online on homemade gifts. If you have skill look up homemade gifts on-line. This will get you started.Want to make Christmas gifts but don’t have the time. Make list of all those Christmas gifts you wanted to make divide them by 12 and record reminder on your phone. This way when the new month starts you know whose present your suppose to make. The hardest challenge is not giving the gift to them before Christmas, so take a photo of it and keep it safe. Wrap the gift in Christmas paper, tagged and all. The present stays hidden and you still can admire it.
- Christmas cookies decorating sugars. I purchase red for Valentines and green for Saint Patrick’s Day. These stay good for years. Found out that you can easily make your own by mixing food coloring with sugar in a sandwich bag.
- Plastic wreaths, Christmas Trees, decorations all on half price. Score!
- Christmas tree decorations: Our first Christmas tree was a small living Norfolk plant. It came already decorated. Our second year we had barely enough for a tree much less decorations. I purchased a Christmas plaid ribbon and made little bows covering the tree. It looked great. That’s when I started picking up decorations on the after Christmas sales.
- Thrift shops and shopping on line: Gifts that complete a set of dishes already own or something rare (like first run books) can be purchased used. It takes time but make really thoughtful gifts.
If you haven’t shopped the after Christmas sales before, put back a little of money this year and reap the benefits all year long. Merry Christmas to all.