Countdown time! We have only five more days in Arizona before we hitch up and head out. What to do, what to do? Getting ready for the trip, finishing what we want to see and do in Phoenix, Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale, plus a little tennis every day, PLUS gift shopping — how can we get it all done? Can we possibly do all this and get ready for Christmas? Or, are we already at the point of “frantic last minute shopping”?
Someone said yesterday they are frantically doing last minute holiday shopping. What, did we miss a cue? This is our time for methodically minding wish lists and arranging timely shipping. Stores are currently offering great deals as discounts and free-shipping. And delivery from our shippers is still before December 16 — nine whole days before Christmas!!! As Alfred E Newman didn’t say, “What, me hurry?”
Full-timing offers another dimension to gift management. What if you see the perfect gift during travels to some interesting store in a far away place? Price is okay, and you love the item. When will you be back to Pendleton, Oregon, or Madison, Wisconsin, to this one-of-a-kind store? Okay, act assertively and get the gift six months ahead of time. Now you store it in the attic, or on the top shelf of your closet, or under your bed, right? This works to a limited degree for us in our RV.
We’ve bought a few gifts during travels before these most recent three Christmases. Gift considerations must include whether we can find a place for it for the ensuing time before delivery. Let’s review where we can stash the gifts — in the bin above our bed (great for soft and light-weight things), under the seats of the truck (one cubic foot unused), under the sofa (1/2 cubic foot unused?), on the truck’s back seat (not recommended, eh?), or in the truck’s bed (for heavy or longer items).
What about letting friends store gifts for us? Might work but this can be risky for Jim — he still turns up a gift in a clothes tote or one of his other hiding places, now and then, from birthdays or Christmases past. Bought it, stowed it, and forgot it. What if they leave before we do, or we leave before we remember to reclaim the gift? So we have to keep it simple and should keep a list of where things are. Okay, we have some choices about how to manage early purchases. But there’s so little space for gifts of any bulk.
Our favorite tip this year? We are, for our online shopping, shipping gifts to meet us at our family Christmas destination. We’re visiting with family over the holidays and so are shipping most of the presents to us at the house of Debbie’s parents. We’ll have almost a week to inspect, wrap, and label these presents and get them under the tree.
Lots to do, and we have plenty of time. It’s not too early to shop, never too early for that. But we think it is too early for frantic last minute shopping.