After Christmas Savings Ideas

By ERIN TURNER

Christmas is always an event in our house and we tend to bask in the joy of the season for a few days after the big day.  After all the parties are done, the presents bought, wrapped and opened and food prepared and enjoyed, we like to settle in and just enjoy each other and relax.  But that usually means I miss out on the after Christmas sales which fall immediately when the stores open on December 26th.

If you are finding yourself in the same boat, do not fear; there are still many a good deal left for us!  Actually, over the next two weeks the sales will get better and better.  But don’t wait too long if you are looking for specific items as the selection gets a little less abundant.

Target Christmas sales happen like this: 50% off Christmas clearance items for the first 3-5 days, then to 70% off and finally the week after New Years’ you will see items at 90% off.  Most stores follow a similar pattern in the mark downs of their Christmas or seasonal items.

If Christmas ate a whole in your pocket this year, then NOW is the time to change that for next year!  You may be thinking you don’t want to spend any more money right now, but honestly this is the time to stock up on items for next Christmas so you are 1) prepared and 2) save a bundle of cash next Christmas season!

Here are the items you will find me stocking up on this year:

  • photo 1 (197)Christmas Lights– it always seems a strand or two go out every year so I like to have some back- ups. We have the light-up reindeer in our yard and they only seem to last a couple of years so we wait to replace them until after Christmas for the next year. Plus, I also stock up on bulbs for the larger outdoor lights.  I like paying pennies for them now vs. a couple of dollars nextseason!
  • Plates, napkins and cups-these are items which can cost you an arm and a leg if you wait to buy them right before you need them. These are items which you can find in abundance at many stores.
  • Wrapping supplies—stock up NOW on these items! This is a no brainer.  Otherwise you will be paying full price in November or December next year.  Why not pay 70% off now??  Items include: wrapping paper, bows and ribbons, gift tags, tape and gift bags.
  • Sprinkles—We hold a kids’ cookie decorating party every year and sprinkles, sanding sugars and other cookie decorations are expensive. But they are also shelf-stable…meaning I can get them 70-90% off now and they will be perfectly tasty to use next year.  I also stock up a season ahead on candy canes.  Believe me, they won’t go bad.
  • Christmas Cards—if you use premade Christmas cards, then stock up now. Our family likes doing the photo cards, so I unfortunately have to wait.  But for anyone else, get out there and pick out your cards this next week.
  • photo 2 (181)Christmas decorations—as you begin to undecorated, take inventory of items which need replacing and hit the stores for those items this year rather than wait until next Christmas season. Items which I’ve seen early in the season but found too expensive are ones which I’ll zoom in on during my post Christmasshopping.
  • Gifts—while it’s sometimes hard to shop a whole year ahead, it doesn’t ever hurt to pick up 90% off hand towels, coffee mugs and other items which are handy to have for gift exchanges at work or to tuck into neighbors’ gift baskets.

When it comes to getting great post Christmas deals, look around at your favorite stores but then think outside the box!  I drove past the Cracker Barrel Restaurant yesterday and realized they have some super cute Christmas decorations which will be clearance this week.  Don’t forget to check out all the clearance carts at your grocery stores as well.  I also find great deals on paper plates, etc. at these places!

Get out there these next two weeks and cash in on the after Christmas savings. You’ll be patting yourself on the back next December when you discover how smart and frugal you were this year!

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Erin Eisenman-Turner is proud to be a native Missoulian. Along with her husband and three sons, they raise chickens, pigs, rabbits, and vegetables at Turner Family Farms in the Orchard Homes area. When the farm chores are done, the coupons clipped, and the blog written, you can find Erin exploring Montana, collecting antiques, and trying to maintain a well-run, happy, and organized home for her family.

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