I've seen it coming. Even before I started thinking about colorful leaves and halloween costumes, the first hints of Christmas started to appear. A handful of holiday decorations in the stores, the big toy dream book in the mail, a commercial here and there hinting at trees and garland. No matter how much advanced notice I get, Christmas seems to sneak up on me every year.
Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a world class procrastinator. I like to think that I work better under pressure but I really think that I am just lazy. I like to joke (ok, it's not really funny) that I like to wait to start my Christmas shopping only after the winter solstice has occurred. If you subtract Christmas Eve, that leaves me a total 2 or 3 days to get all of my holiday shopping done.
This kind of behavior drives some people crazy - like my MEF who not only has her shopping done already - everything is also wrapped and mostly tagged. If I had to guess, I bet she already has gifts for 2011 already purchased! I know that part of my last minute behavior was created years ago. My employer always handed out Christmas bonuses - in the form of cold, hard cash - several days before Christmas. At that time, it was a necessity to wait for a cash infusion to get the holidays in gear. I guess it became such a habit that I never even thought about starting earlier.
My last minute shopping frenzies have been known to send my credit card company into panic mode thinking someone hijacked my card and went on a hopping spree! I have never been much of a online or catalog shopper because the last minute shipping charges are killers! A certain stuffed penguin was a last minute "must have" that ended up costing twice as much due to the guaranteed Christmas Eve shipping charges!
Inspired by other - especially my MEF - I vowed to start shopping early this year. I actually had at least one gift purchased BEFORE the 4th of July! Killing time before a recent flight I happened upon a perfect gift for someone special and managed to figure out a way to get it home without crushing it! Since I feel like I have a head start already, I am going to keep the momentum going. I vow to keep picking up things here and there. I could use a boost by winning this gift certificate to keep my inspired to finish early!
See you all at the mall - but not on Black Friday - I'll be the one at home snuggled on the couch in my pj's watching you all on TV!