Friday, January 6, 2017

Christmas Shopping in January

Hello again!  Are you having a good week?  I am really working on staying on schedule and working in assigned time blocks.  I have a list of goals for the month that I am reading every morning.  One says "Home before GraceWorks".  This has been one of the hardest to put into practice, but has already had tremendous benefits - like lowering my stress level.  The morning is for my home, so by about 10:00 in the morning I've had time to shower, eat breakfast, take care of the dog, do a quick blitz of the house, put away any dishes that are on the counter or in the dishwasher, spend time with the Lord, check my Instagram feed, wash and fold a load of laundry or two, and do one or two extra tasks.  Today it was to clean the laundry room and the GraceWorks packing table.  I think tomorrow's task is to clean out the baking cabinet.  As I notice things that need to be done, I turn through the week's pages and assign it a day rather than just putting it on a master task list.  I might not get to it for a few days, but once it is assigned to a day I know that it will get done. :)

The GraceWorks page shown is the Petite Lined Notepaper...

Another thing I am working on this year is curbing my impulse spending.  Here's an example that would have gotten me sidetracked just a few months ago.  I got an ad from the hardware store today with lots of items that would be great stocking stuffers for my husband and son for next Christmas.  And at decent prices, too!  Great!  I'll just go pick those up and figure out where I'll find the $$ when we get our check!  Only with our new Money Challenge, I know for a fact that I don't have any more gift money until February.  AND we set up a Christmas Club account this year so that I would have Christmas $$ to spend in October when it can be withdrawn.  UGH.  I looked through the list to see if anything was a need.  Yes.  One of my drying racks is broken and I need a new one.  I have one like the one that is advertised and love it.  It comes out of the household part of my budget.  Check.  I will get that this afternoon.  But what about all the other wonderful ideas???  I decided to start a section in my planner where I could write down all the ideas, as well as the price that they were advertised at.  In October, when I start my Christmas shopping, I will have ideas and price ranges to guide me.  If they happen to be seasonal, perhaps I'll be able to find them on an even better sale at the end of the season, and maybe I'll have a little extra spending money at that point and can buy them ahead.

 As for the little thermometer...  I think I might raid my "fun money" and pick up one of those for my husband for Valentine's Day.  He would love it. :)

What are some ways you plan ahead for gift giving?  I'd love to hear your ideas!

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