142 days until Christmas—Vacation Shopping

We’re into the last month of summer. Perhaps you’re on vacation. Why not pick up one-of-a-kind gifts that your family would never see in their local shopping mall.

My friend—I can’t tell you her name in case her family is reading this—bought her children hand-carved puzzles,
her neighbor a distinctive box,
her daughter a new spread for her bed
a mitt for her favorite chef
and for those people who still write letters by hand, these beautiful pens. 003 (4)

Think Christmas on your vacation and by the end of the summer your shopping will be done. And the special people in your life will be thrilled to receive such unusual gifts.

157 days left until Christmas

Want to really make your Christmas stress-free?

Shop now!

Don’t wait until Black Friday to join the crowds. Those deals you think you’re getting often are not deals at all. Too many stores up the price before they slash it. Want a happier shopping experience?

Start today!

Make your list of people you plan on giving gifts. If you already have ideas, of what they’d like or need, put those down. Then pick a weekday to go shopping. Plan to get to the stores exactly when they open and avoid even the small crowds.

What a pleasant shopping experience you’ll have!

Let others fight the holiday crowds this season.Holiday-Shopping-Crowds

And be sure to read our next post about writing that poem for your special someone. You relax and enjoy a stress-free, love-filled Christmas.


       Do you hate shopping?  Santa does too, but if he and his elves can’t make a gift in his factory, that’s what he must do.

You, too.  


I prefer what local stores and museum shops have to offer, but if you must go to malls, make sure you do so before Thanksgiving.   

Does that sound crazy? 

Consider how difficult and time-consuming shopping will be when the holiday season is in full swing.  If this picture doesn’t frighten you, it should.


       Do you really enjoy driving endlessly through a parking structure looking for a space?  Do you love tapping your foot impatiently waiting for a salesperson to answer your question?  Does waiting in a long line for a cashier to ring up your purchase make you want to scream?

Relaxed Christmas means shopping ahead of the crush.  No matter whether you shop locally or in a giant mall, plan to finish your shopping before December first. 

Others may mock you, but think how fine you’ll feel while they rush around with pounding headaches and rising blood pressures.

Continue reading

Start Your Christmas Planning Early

          Mr. Claus and I always enjoy a post-Christmas vacation at a warm beach.  My husband is crazy about surfing.


Immediately on return, Santa begins planning for the upcoming year. 

Even though Halloween candy is only half-eaten, if you want a stress-free Christmas, you need to get to work now.  My husband cannot possibly be responsible for all the gifts for everyone in the world.  You have to help.  You have to shop.

Maybe you’re one of those people who shops year round.  Then you’re already ahead of the game.  Unfortunately, too many people forget what they have bought.  Don’t let that happen to you.  Bring out your stash of gifts and start your list.   

Make sure you hide your hand-written list where no one will see it.  If you keep it on your computer, use a secret file name like Peanut Butter Cookies so family members won’t guess at what’s inside. 

Write down the presents you already have next to the intended recipient.  You may happily discover that you’ve nearly finished your shopping. 

If you haven’t, sit quietly and contemplate each person you want to gift.  The joy of Christmas is thinking about our loved ones and what might delight them.  Would your daughter like a pair of earrings for her newly pierced ears: your son, the chef, an excellent carving knife: a new book for Aunt Esther?

Add those not-yet-purchased gifts with an asterisk next to them to your list. 

Here’s my list for Mr. Claus:

Beard trimmer

Book‘TWAS THE LATE NIGHT OF CHRISTMAS so he’ll finally appreciate my work.


*foot soak

       Once I purchase those last gifts, I’ll remove the asterisks.

Now with your list in hand, when you go shopping, you’ll have a purpose and save time and energy.

Did reading the secret file name Peanut Butter Cookies make you hungry?    Download a yummy recipe here.


Don’t feel guilty eating them.  They’re brain food to help you come up with great gift ideas.

Perhaps you’ve had an interesting experience making Christmas lists, or finding long-forgotten gifts, you’d like to share?  And I’m always on the lookout for yummy brain food recipes.

November 6th we’ll talk about what to do with your list.


Until then, let’s all strive for a stress-free, love-filled Christmas . . .