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Eek! Picking the right gift is stressful

Kortney Gruenwald is an internationally published journalist, writer and founder of lifestyle blog Western Charm. Originally a west coast American girl, she is currently living in Germany but still fueled by iced lattes (even in winter)....

When shopping goes wrong...

There is nothing natural, kind or welcoming about shopping season. Are the deals spectacular? Is the hysteria and flood of eager and irate shoppers worth it?
When shopping goes wrong...

Yes, holiday shopping can be a fun, exciting experience. But buyer beware: Nightmares can occur. Here are five common but horrific things that can happen while shopping.

When shopping goes wrong...


Parking nightmare

Parking is literally impossible when the number spaces is fewer than the number of consumers within a 30-mile radius. If you’re at a mall, forget it. You’ll have to park two miles away over a hill and past the cactus with one limb in a sketchy neighborhood. We shudder to think how many man hours are wasted idling at intersections and circling parking lots trying to find that last available parking space — usually next to a Dumpster behind a store across the street from your goal.


Foreign grounds

Maybe this is your first major shopping experience or maybe you want to experiment with different shopping grounds — but choose wisely. One of the golden rules of shopping efficiently is to have a strict game plan and set a budget. Know what items you are looking for beforehand, print out a map of the mall and determine the most efficient way to navigate.


People jungle

Every aggressive, primal tendency humans already have is magnified when holiday shopping. You will see this as people are chewing their bagels while simultaneously digging through the Victoria's Secret sales bins.


Bathroom blues

We all love that sweet moment when you’re in a one-hour line (whether it be waiting to pay or the notorious fitting room line at H&M) and suddenly, halfway to the register, you are overcome with the urge to tinkle.



Holiday shopping can easily be a 12-hour event for the average shopper. Again, come up with a game plan and a specific list of what you want deals on. Keep an energy bar and some water in your purse to stay fueled. That way you can attack and leave victorious.

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