anxiety attacks. The holidays
are supposed to be a time to show loved ones how much we appreciate
them. It’s supposed to be a time to celebrate the birth of a baby
Don’t get me wrong – I love the holidays! I love the smells of
cinnamon and pine. I love hot apple cider, Christmas lights, Santa,
awesome sales and of course, presents! What I don’t love is the
thought of digging myself into a hole of debt because society says
Christmas is synonymous with gift giving.
I admit it, I love to shop. But I’m a little bitter about it, too.
December rolls around and my stress level skyrockets! I toss and
turn, lose sleep – can’t decide whether to get Kate that
fabulous DKNY bag I saw at the mall or put gas in my car.
Here are some holiday shopping tips to help make the next month more
fun and less stressful.
* Shop early and find the
bargains. There are lots of sales. It also spreads the costs out, so
it doesn’t hurt as much.
* Network with friends in
retail. Most employees get 30-50 percent off. Find out which friends
work at your favorite spots.
* Overstock.com has great
prices on just about everything, including name brands. They usually
ship in 5-10 business days.
* Consignment shops are
hot! My favorite one is The Ultimate You in Ward Center. They
have great prices for designer bags, jewelry and clothes. Also, what
you get there won’t be on every sale rack the day after Christmas.
* Make something. A
homemade card or painted picture frame is not only cheaper, but also
more likely to last years and be remembered more than the matching
cardigan sweater set.
* Donate to charity.
It’s the perfect gift for someone who has everything. Aloha United
Way, The Breast Cancer Fund, Big Brothers / Big Sisters; pick a
charity that supports your values.
* Make a list of the
people you are going to swap gifts with and stick to that list. For
everyone else – make cookies or candies.
a potluck and tell everyone “no gifts” – just celebrate
friendships. Write out what the holidays mean to you and find ways
to express that meaning.
OK, I’ll just take a deep sigh, hide the credit cards for the
month and remember that this season is all about celebrating life,
showing appreciation and having a generous heart.
Malisa Uchida is a graduate of Boston
University. She now reports news and traffic on the “Lanai
& Augie Morning Show” (Island 98.5 FM), as well as producing
“The Mike Buck Show” (KHVH 830 AM). She can be
reached at email@example.com