Some of the reasons why I like starting so early is because the malls are quiet, there are no long line-ups at the cash counters, everything is in stock, and the Summer and Fall sales are usually quite decent! The first thing I do is make a list of people I need to buy gifts for and then I set my budget. Next to each person's name I'll write down a couple of gift ideas and then I'm ready to start shopping.
Now, before I actually head out to the mall, I'll do a price comparison online for each of the items I've come up with. This really helps me stay within my spending budget and it also helps me come up with even MORE gift ideas as there may be things I come across online that I would never have thought of on my own! If I see that the prices online are significantly cheaper than in-store prices, I'll gladly order online and save myself the hassle of leaving the house altogether. If you're a late Christmas shopper, online shopping can totally become your best friend! No more loud, screaming children in the aisles of Toys R Us, no more catty women fighting over positions in line, and, best of all, no more trekking through a pre-Christmas snowfall without winter tires! You can shop from the warmth and safety of your own home and have everything delivered straight to your door (or mailbox) usually free of charge (most sites offer free shipping to Canada if you spend over a certain amount).
If you buckle down and start early this year, you'll save yourself a lot of hassle and last-minute gift worry (believe me). So why not get everything down now and then sit back and relax come December? Have a nice cup of cocoa by the fire and think of how much grief you've saved yourself this holiday season!