A few weeks ago, I decided to challenge myself (any anyone who wanted to join in) to start working on their Christmas shopping, and shop all year from clearance racks so that you could get the very best deals.
Like most things in life, once I set out on a mission, I become very determined to complete it (sometimes too determined) and so I am almost finished shopping. Other than my father-in-law and a couple of secret santa gifts, all gifts outside of my home are now completely off my list. I believe I spent under $150 for all of the gifts I have spent this far, including many gifts for my own children. I was very excited to see my gift closet becoming so full so very quickly.
As a second result of finding so many wonderful deals, I have also purchased many of the birthday gifts that I have to have for my nieces and nephews for the upcoming year. I also bought a few extra things for children that are the ages of my children, so when we get those last minute birthday party invites, I am not scrambling to come up with a gift (which always seems to mean that you pay more than you normally would have).
I had not thought out all of the ways that this way of gift buying could save me money in the long run, but now that I have a great stash of gifts, I am already seeing the wonders of this plan. Although, I know that this concept is not a new one, I simply did not realize how much wonderful stuff is available at the end of Christmas.
On another note, right after Christmas on clearance, Walmart had the "Ripstick" skateboards on clearance for $35. They had TONS of them. Just last week, I was in the store, and they were already back up to $70+. Their clearance didn't last too long, but the $70 is still cheaper than the $96 they were during December. Amazing how quickly their prices change!