17 Stages of Trying to Save Your Money & Sanity While Holiday Shopping

santa passed out tiredEvery year, I say it is going to be different. Every year, I promise I'll finish my Christmas shopping early. I'll stay on budget -- maybe even save big! I absolutely will NOT find myself at the drugstore at 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve looking for just one ... more ... stocking stuffer! And yet, every year I swear I follow the same holiday shopping pattern of predictable panic.

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Here, the tried-and-true 17 stages of holiday shopping. Can you relate?

1. Start thinking about Christmas in October. Note that the holidays seem SO FAR away. Time? We've got nothing but time.

 

2. Decide to wait until Black Friday to start shopping, because you are sure that you will find everything you need. And it will all be on sale. And then, you'll totally be done with holiday shopping -- and will have saved a gazillion dollars.

 

3. Live, barely, to regret that decision.

 

4. Take the rest of Black Friday weekend off. Regroup. Listen to some Christmas music. Get ready to really start holiday shopping filled with cheer and goodwill toward men.

 

5. Start shopping. Tick items off the list. You are on fire! You are a machine! You are ... over budget. Already.


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6. But who cares about the budget? You just found the perfect gift for your mom!

 

7. The moment you realize you forgot to add your boss to your gift list. And your husband. And your kid's teacher.

 

8. Psych yourself back up. There are still two weeks until Christmas. You GOT THIS.

 

9. But soon the all the shopping and people and fighting for parking spaces at the mall starts to take a toll.

 

10. If the wine doesn't work, nothing like buying a few presents for yourself to take the edge off!

 

11. You think you are done and then -- surprise! -- your kid totally changes his mind about what he wants.

 

12. Did I mention that all those presents now need to be wrapped? Before the kids wake up in three hours?

13. But then it is done and somehow it all feels so magical.

14. Time for some rest, a glass of wine, and watching Love Actually for the millionth time.

 

15. WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DIDN'T GET YOUR MOTHER A GIFT, HUSBAND?

 

16. What time does the drugstore close again?

 

17. Christmas morning. BOOM. Mom for the win again.

 

Totally worth it, right?

 

Image via iStock.com/tomwang112

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