Thinking Ahead During Deal Season

Most moms have one -- a stash of toys for birthdays and occasions “just in case.” Whether it’s a last minute invitation to a birthday party or a nephew's big event that just sneaked up on you, the stash has saved your hide several times. But it’s probably getting thin. Maybe you’ve even had to dip into it this holiday season with all the school events, maybe a last-minute festive gathering -- and not being able to get to the stores some days. Maybe you’ve been waiting for the right time to restock. With the mega-sales happening in the final pre-Christmas days and immediately afterward, there’s no time like the present!

birthday gifts

Getting your stash back in good shape doesn't have to be onerous or overly expensive. You're already in the stores anyway and there are coupons and promotions available! Retailers are trying every trick in the book to get people into their stores and this is to your advantage. You should, however, have a plan. Not just any gifts will do.

By gender

Even if you have only daughters and your siblings have only daughters and your in-laws have only daughters, you'll still need to have "boy" toys in the stash. Consider stash items for both boys and girls -- and a couple that could go either way. That said, keep it safe. Not every family is into war toys for boys or princess toys for girls.

By age

Think about the ages of your children and child relatives, and consider those ages when purchasing stash items. Sure, the building set is an amazing deal, but if it's too old for your adorable niece or too young for your handsome nephew, it's going to stagnate in your stash. If you need a gift for that other age later, you can still get it, just maybe not at the holiday super-sale price.

By person

You can, if you like, buy person-specific gifts. For example, if you see a hefty coffee table book that your sister would love at a not-so-hefty price (but you've already purchased her gift), why not buy that book and put it in your stash for when her birthday comes around? Or the skateboard your son has been just dying for -- it's practically being given away. Just don't forget that you have it when that birthday or other gift-giving occasion is coming around!

Even though you are busy, a little thought beyond the holiday season can do wonders for your gift stash. Take advantage of holiday sales and deals while you can.

Read more about buying gifts

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