How to Simplify Holiday Shopping for Busy Parents

Tackle this holiday season with our tips for less tantrums, less stress, and more time for family togetherness!

When it comes to the holiday season, stress can be a close companion to the food, friends, and festivities that the winter months typically bring. Add gift shopping and children to the mix, and it sounds downright impossible! But with our suggestions, holiday shopping can be made more simple.

  1. Shop online. This one sounds obvious, and there's a reason for that: it is. If you need to search for an inspired item, a trip to the mall may be necessary. For more specific purchases, if you have a wish list or a selection of gift cards that need to be purchased, order them over lunch hour or after the kids are asleep. You can often find free shipping or other deals online, making your time-saving trick a money-saving one, too
  2. Pack snacks or eat ahead of time. Many shopping trips have been derailed due to a food court breakdown. Even taking the time to swing through a fast-food restaurant before shopping can be stressful during the busy holiday season. Eat before you go, and bring along healthy snacks for yourself and your children. 
  3. Insist on wish lists. Instead of searching high and low for items that friends, family, and coworkers will love, explain your time constraints and ask loved ones to tell you exactly which gifts they are eyeing. Save yourself the stress of selecting new clothing for your teens when they already know exactly what they would prefer to unwrap on holiday mornings.
  4. Take advantage of free gift wrapping. Many department stores offer free gift wrapping with purchase over the holiday season. Save yourself some time and energy by getting your gift wrapped immediately! Just make a note somewhere about whose gift it is – holiday morning mix ups are never fun. Alternatively:
  5. Make gift wrapping a family activity. Do you have young children at home? Turn gift wrapping or catalog combing into a family-friendly activity.

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