I am devoting this entire blog to Holiday Shopping for kids. Why would I devote an entire blog to holiday shopping for kids? I went through the holidays myself with three children two years apart and have a great idea of what it means to shop for children during the holiday season.
The first thing to remember the children are targeted during this time of the year, the commercials and all the advertisement are geared towards the children. I attended a workshop on marketing once and the facilitator told us that when we are unable to get the adults to purchase for themselves that we should find a way to get them to spend on their kids. Marketing to children is a multibillion dollar business and we are all allowing these companies to increase their bottom lines at our expense.
When shopping for children there are four things parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and friends should know. Children shopping should be divided in four categories. It is also a good idea to make some prior decisions about who will buy the gifts for the children and what will be bought. Plan ahead! Stay on plan and keep to the budget you have allowed for each.
Here are the four groups for shopping for children during the holiday season.
- Buy something they want, children usually make a list of the things they want, take the list and go over it very carefully, look at what they have written down what they want or what they say they want, that list will change but only to add something new, never to take something out so choose something from the list that you can afford and stick to it.
- The next thing should be something you know that they will wear. That could be a new coat, or some other article of clothing. This is where shopping with a list is important; do not go holiday shopping without that list of the things they can wear. Have the list and stick to it.
- We now come to the things they need, or will need in the first three months of the New Year. What will they need for the New Year, are they registered in, dance, hockey or some other activity. This is your time to use the holiday season to take care of some of the needs that are coming up in the New Year.
- Now what about something they should read, I know, you are thinking kids don’t read that much anymore they are all into video games. This is very true but they all have an interest. What about purchasing a book about hockey for those who are lovers of hockey. There are great books on baseball; a few of the last Olympians from the 2012 Olympics have written books on their journeys to become Olympians. If they are interested in video games get a magazine subscription that will pique their interest further
Now when you have a list of the four points, What they Want, What they will Wear, What they Need and What they should Read, circulate the list among family and let everyone choose from that list. In doing this the children will have a wider range of things under the tree. This will also give you an opportunity to get some of the things they will need and will wear in the New Year.
January is a sad time to be spending money especially during the early months of the New Year when cash flow is running slowly. Debt increases because of the lack of cash flow, by planning carefully during the following weeks will indeed give you a head start not only on the holiday spending but also on the post holiday spending. If you did not have a special plan for the holiday you might have to use your credit card. If you are going to do so make it as careful and strategic as you can. Remember, proper preparation prevents poor performance.
Let me know how the holiday shopping is going.
Have a Happy Holiday.