For someone who dislikes shopping, I sure do love Black Friday. I wasn't 100% sure whether or not I would brave the crowds this year with Jackson. Now that Jesse works retail, his shift was from 4 a.m. to 4 p.m. so I knew I would be on my own with Jack. All in all, we had another GREAT day full of productivity. Here's how we are able to have a successful Black Friday year after year:
1. Have a list.
With a big family you have to be organized. My siblings pass around a spreadsheet where we write in three different gift ideas for each our our children. I literally print the list and cross out names once I put items in the shopping cart.
2. Shop early, but not too early.
Unless you're buying a laptop or TV, I see no reason to shop at 5 a.m. Most sales last until at least 11 a.m. Jackson and I naturally awoke around 7 this morning, so we were at Toys-R-Us by 7:30. There was plenty of merchandise without the huge crowds. (Yes, I made a random woman take a picture of us.)
3. Take advantage of sales and additional discounts.
Jesse and I used to shop at Wal-Mart or Target so we could take advantage of employee discounts or gift cards. This year I obviously chose to shop at Toys-R-Us. Not only does Jesse get a discount at Toys-R-Us/Babies-R-Us, but I get my own Spouse Discount Card. Score!
4. Have fun!
I put Jackson in the Ergo and made the most of my morning meticulously looking up and down each aisle before I even put anything in the cart. I always like to check everything out before I decided what to get for each child.
5. Do a price check for each item to make sure you stay within your budget.
I scanned each item and had to exchange one item that wasn't the price I thought it was. I am happy to report that I found a lot of good deals and were able to make ALL family purchases $2 under budget.
One year I wasn't even thinking and got a couple of gifts mixed up. I had to unwrap two of them to figure out who they were for, then wrap it again! Everything went smoothly tonight and I have wrapped every single gift (14 kids, 2 adults) and placed them in the attic. Jesse put up the Christmas tree while I wrapped presents. Jackson supervised from the bouncy seat.
Who's ready for Christmas???