budgeting money for Christmas Christmas discount shopping Holiday Shopping lists Making a list and checking it twice where to start holiday shopping

The Ghosts of Holiday Shopping

photo credit: allerleirau via photopin cc

Happy Black Friday!  I hope that the day finds you productive AND safe!  Today I have decided to stay home and not buy more things I do not need.  I know, I can’t believe that I just said that either.  I have a few gifts left to buy and I’m still brainstorming on the list.  Today I’ll be sharing my past posts in case you needed a little extra help in getting going for ideas of how to start, where to start and where you can find some deals.

My Naughty and Nice List – giving you the information you need to start your list, step by step.

Where Can I Start My Holiday Shopping? – Gives you the first idea of where to start your holiday shopping if you’re looking for unique gifts.

Black Friday Shopping– My thoughts on Black Friday Shopping.
The Giving Season is Upon Us…where to shop for your holiday gifts for you and for everyone on your list! – Self Explanatory AND some tips in the PS portion of the post.
Where to Shop…Parte Dos! – A continuation of all the great sites available to you to get great gifts at a discount.  Remember to check how long items will take to ship and the return policy.

This is enough to get you going.  Stay tuned next week where I share some of my favorite gifts that I’ve received, the gifts I have given and a special giveaway.  Happy Shopping!

Until then,

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Where to Shop…Parte Dos!

With all the deal sites out there, we no longer have to be strapped down to a particular day like Cyber Monday to find the right gift for the holidays.  My only tip to you is that if you see something you like or that screams ‘buy it for danny’ (fill in a name), then get it RIGHT AWAY.  Do not wait and think about it.  I have done that on a couple of deals and then I decide let’s do it, and then its SOLD OUT.  Check out my PS in The Giving Season is Upon Us…where to shop for your holiday gifts for you and for everyone on your list! for how to handle seeing a lower price after you’ve made your purchase.  Keeping that in mind I give you another batch of sites to find the deals!
Ideeli – I have purchased quite a few things over the last few years from this site.  It is by far one of my favorites!  Here you can find clothes for women, men and children.  Shoes, jewelry, outerwear, high designer items, new designer items, travel, houseware, experiences and they are always adding more things.  YOUR INVITATION  
Ruelala – This is a site I recently discovered.  This covers items for men, women, kids, clothes, accessories, footwear, home, wine, gourmet food, local services, travel and special fixes 🙂  This site has a nice feature 9.95 covers shipping for a month.  YOUR INVITATION 
Groupon –   This site offers tons of great things that are in your neck of the woods.  Support your local businesses in your area while making memories to boot and not hurting your wallet.  YOUR INVITATION
LivingSocial – This is another great site for getting to know your local businesses and if you buy a deal, refer it and 3 friends also get it, yours is free!  How awesome is that!
Vacations To Go –  Get daily deals to vacations of all price ranges, including river cruises, hotels and resorts, escorted tours, and African Safaris.  Feel free to email Alan any inquiries, he’s emailed me back on numerous occasions.
Until then, Happy Shopping,

PS: Look for the Discount Shopping Page!
discount shopping gift ideas Holiday Shopping Invitaiton Only Sites Money Mondays presents Shopping Deals Shopping Websites

The Giving Season is Upon Us…where to shop for your holiday gifts for you and for everyone on your list!

While Cyber Monday has come and gone, fear not there are plenty of sites to get daily deals for the best gifts for your friends and family. Some deals are so good you might just want to get it for yourself!

Daily Candy –  Here you will get an email of articles of things to read that come from their site. Topics range from fashion, beauty, food & drink, home & garden, travel, culture, gift ideas and deals. I am signed up on their New York version but many of the major cities are represented; just pick the closest to you!  The nicer feature is the deals that you get from different vendors in the area that you live in. Be creative and pick up some deals to create memories with various experiences around town. I have actually picked up quite a few deals on here, including Christmas gifts! – Invitation only website that has a few categories to choose from…clothes, accessories, jewelry, shoes, luggage, beauty products, men women and children …all higher end goods at deep discount prices, don’t have an invitation? But of course you do 🙂 YOUR INVITATION

Gilt Taste – Get the goods on meats, seafood, cheeses, prepared goods, pantry items, sweets, produce, beverages, wine and equipment…

Gilt City – Another great website that gives you deals for your city…choose your local and enjoy exclusive dining experience, sold-out show tickets, luxury salons, spas, cool shops…etc YOUR INVITATION

PARK & BOND – A site for the fellas; clothing, accessories, footwear, designers, vintage watches 🙂

JETSetter – Luxury Travel Deals – YOUR INVITATION

Portero Luxury – Premium Pre-Owned Prized Bags, Totes, Scarves, Wristwatches, wallets, cluthes and other things including vintage. You can also sell items on this site. Does not require an invitation.

Lot 18 – An invitation only Wine Store that has recently added gourmet items and experiences.  YOUR INVITATION

Snique Away – An invitation only Discount Travel Site YOUR INVITATION

Open Sky – Tailored Shopping by creating a team of celebrities that recommend their favorite things and how to get it at a discount. YOUR INVITATION

This is just the tip of the iceberg!  Stay tuned to more places to shop for yourself and others this holiday season and into the next year.
Until then, Happy Shopping!

PS  If you happened to notice that Cyber Monday seemed to extend for the entire week and you feel like you should wait for a better price, don’t.  I have made several holiday gift buys over the last few weeks only to find it at a lower price the next day.  Check out the return policy of where you purchased the item.  Some places will give back a price difference after a certain amount of days, typically seven.  However some vendors have strict no price difference policies.  If you run across the latter, simply contact their customer service.  Let them know you just purchased an item that has appeared at a lower price than what you purchased it at.  Ask them what is the best way to go about getting the price difference.  Be clear and let them know that you are aware that they do not issue price difference refunds for items purchased when the price drops but that you were wondering if there was an easier way than returning and repurchasing.  You would be surprised how accommodating vendors can be.  If they happen to be a stickler for their policies than re-buy at the sale price and return the one at the higher price.Good Luck and feel free to share your story!

discount shopping ideeli Money Mondays Shopping

Do you ideeli? If not you should and here’s your invite!

I’ve been saving for several months now for the month of June.  My dad’s birthday is the week before father’s day and my boyfriend’s birthday is at the end of the month.  Add to it this year my niece’s graduation and I hear the sound of an adding machine as the dollars add up.  Thanks to my planning in advance and my keen antenna for sales, I’m slightly excited to spend money on my loved ones this month.  That is partly do to this amazing website I was introduced to last year.  Its an exclusive shopping site that allows you to purchase amazing name brand and designer labels at a fraction of the cost. No REALLY.  I got this beautiful Alexis Hudson bag last February, that retails for 700+ for a little under 200 after shipping.  Now yes, I know, I shouldn’t be spending that much money on a purse, at least not right now anyways, BUT did I mention how beautiful it was.

Since that purchase, I’ve picked up sandals, jewelry, and home goods.  Did I mention their amazing give aways.  A few months back I won the CHANEL Giveaway. The thing I love is that joining the site is FREE and you are under no obligation to buy anything.

Its an invitation only shopping site and lucky for you I have your invitation.

So find some awesome gifts for you and your loved ones.  Follow the link and set up a profile and just like that BAM you’re in….It can’t hurt to see the sales 🙂

Take Me To Ideeli!

Happy Shopping!

Until then
discount shopping djRelat7 Finds

Do you O?

I wanted to take a second to highlight one of my favorite sites,  It is a major serious site because it carries thousands of brand names in hundreds of different categories.  Shipping is always $2.95 to ship YOUR ENTIRE order.  Shoes, jewelry, bedding, books, furniture, sports equipment, video games….the list goes on and on.  I found a pair of shoes that I couldn’t find in a store on this site.  I can NOT express how excited I was by that.  Ladies I know you feel me on this one.  Gentlemen looking for Golf Clubs, its that time again,!  Last year I picked up a nice set of golf clubs to learn on, I got a great deal and $2.95 shipping. WOOHOOO!  Well I’ll let you go now so you can browse the site.  Keep the upcoming graduations in mind, I’m sure you’ll find tons of choices!

Happy Shopping!
Until then
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Never pay full price if you KNOW you can get it cheaper!

The season is changing.  It’s time to change the wardrobe and buy those few pieces to keep your wardrobe up to date. As you’re pulling out what you have, take a mental note of what you need.  Try on what you have, if something no longer fits, think of who you know who might fit it or make a pile for your local donation place like Good Will or Salvation Army.  From the winter, take a look at the things you did not wear and see if you actually see yourself wearing it next winter.  If you don’t think you will give it away or donate it.  Not sure what you wore this past winter, no problem.  I read about a method you can use for next season to see what you wear and what you don’t wear.  When hanging clothes in the closet face the hook towards the back of the closet, this might be how you normally hang your clothes.  After you wear something and wash it, when you rehang it have it face the opposite way.  A few weeks into the season you will start to see what you wear and what you don’t.  I also found it to be a reminder to wear the clothes that have not been worn yet.

Here are some simple rules I apply when shopping for anything:

  1. ALWAYS SHOP WITH COUPONS! Regardless of if we’re going out to buy a pair of pants, or a TV, whatever store we’re going to buy something in, always see if there is a coupon first.  Some companies send coupons to you in the mail, email or in the Sunday paper.  I always google the company I’m looking for’s name followed by the word coupon.  Example, Ann Taylor Loft Coupons.  Another great way to get coupons via email is to visit the website of the company you’re looking to make a purchase at and sign yourself up for emails.  After you receive coupons for a while you know when to hold out for their good ones, some coupons are better than others.  Remember to always read the fine print on the coupon, sometimes there are exclusions or limits to how much you need to spend to use the coupon.
  2. DISCOUNT/REWARDS CARDS!  Many companies have rewards or discount cards for loyal customers and frequent shoppers.  Grocery stores, like Stop & Shop, save money on groceries.  Best Buy has a rewards card that accumulates points for every purchase you make.  Auto Zone and New York and Company has a rewards card that every 5 qualifying purchases gets you a gift certificate to use on your next purchase of a certain amount.  Some companies let you accumulate rewards points using their store credit card.  I am against store credit cards as the interest rate on them are always super high.  However for coupon usage or point accumulation, if you pay your balance off in full before or when you get your statement then you should be fine.  If you find yourself having a balance that carries forward for more than two months then consider not using the card for purchases.  As fees are added on each month if there is a balance,  you will pay more than what you initial thought you’d be paying for your purchases.
  3. HOLIDAY COMING UP?  Ask yourself first, is there a holiday coming up?  Mother’s day is around the corner and there are tons of sales on fine jewelry and woman’s clothing.  A few years ago I picked up a nice camera during the father’s day sales. So keep things like that in mind.  Sometimes waiting a week or two for the next holiday is worth the savings.
  4. CLEARANCE!  In almost every store I go into, I always head straight to the clearance section.  Especially in clothing stores, as most seasonal items come out before the season starts, you can find what is out now for a fraction of the price.  When I worked in retail, now many moons ago, I learned that retail marks up their merchandise by 300%.  So when it gets to clearance its probably closer to what the item is worth.  Here’s a tip: When browsing the clearance section, if you find a ton of what you want to get in your size, wait a few days longer to purchase it.  Some stores do mark downs more than once a week, so if you wait you might pay less for it.  If its not there when you get back, then you must face that fact that it was not meant to be…sigh.
  5. ALWAYS KEEP YOUR RECEIPT ON YOU!  Some stores give you seven days to come back to get price adjustments on merchandise.  If something goes on sale a few days after you’ve purchased it they will give you the difference.  All stores have different policies so check your receipt or the store postings to find out the days you have to come back for the price difference and if there are any exclusions.  Most times they can make the adjustment from your receipt alone. 
  6. OUTLETS/T J MAXX/MARSHALLS/HOME GOODS:  Shop at places that have discounted things you want.  These particular locations buy the surplus of orders and get it cheaper and sell it for less than what we would have paid for it in the store.  The clearance section in these stores is where steals are found!

The Sunday before last I found some ridiculous deals.  I won’t bore you with the details but combining any of the above mentioned will save you tons of money.  When the amount you save is double the price you paid then you’re in SHOPPING BLISS!

If you have to pay full price for something, see if that store has a price adjustment policy.  Stopping in a week later, could save you money!  It’s all about the Lincoln’s baby!

Hope you found this useful!  Feel free to share your shopping tips and secrets in the comments section below.

Until then