Surprise! …What? You were doing something else this month?
I’ve been thinking a lot this year about how to handle Christmas. Last year, due to depressing, move-related circumstances, I was not able to begin buying Christmas presents until the second week of December. I had, however, picked out and bookmarked a lot of the things I was planning on getting for the kids. When I went back to the pages though, many of them had increased in price. By a lot. (I was going to get the boys a very basic swingset – just two swings – for $100. When I went back to buy it, it was either $150 or $200. This was just two or three weeks later.) Some things were sold out, too. I bought Max a very small trampoline with a handle, and I had to order it from someone on Ebay instead of through Amazon. Now, it’s not like this was a surprise or anything, everyone knows that the crazy level increases the closer things get to Christmas, but that was the first time that I had marked the things I wanted and then gone back later, and so it was the first time I realized HOW MUCH prices go up and things get scarce in December.
So obviously (and yes, everyone already realized this, I’m sure – including me) earlier preparation would be better. I never really liked the whole “Christmas in July” thing, though. It’s too hot to feel Christmas-y, and it’s really too early, in my opinion. What a kid wants in July may not be anything like what they’d like in December. I often do Christmas in November, but I find myself sidetracked by Thanksgiving. In October I’d much rather play with Halloween than worry about Christmas. September, on the other hand…aside from one last fling with summer over Labor Day weekend, what have you got going on in September? For lots of people September is the breather in between summer and the holidays, so why not put that down time to good use? Especially if it’s going to save money, make Christmas more fun, and finally let you make handmade presents as you’re meaning to do every year?
So! Interspersed with the posts about things that are going on this month (Charlie’s party, our trip we’re taking this weekend, regular crafting) I’m going to be posting ideas for handmade gifts that are cheap, awesome, or both, and who knows, maybe even some crafts and decorating ideas.