So, who has already been shopping today?
While I love a good bargain, I do not so much love bargain hunting. And that includes standing in long lines, dealing with crowds, and waking up in the wee hours of the morning for shopping. So today, I will be sleeping in. I admit, later in the afternoon, I may hit up the local shops in my neighborhood, see what the bargain hunters have left for the rest of us, plus it’s just a nice lazy way to spend an afternoon.
Last year, I spent Thanksgiving with a friend and her family, and part of their holiday tradition includes going shopping at midnight, then going shopping again around 6 am. It was rough. Fun, but rough. We went for the adventure of it more than anything else, and I admit, I did find a few bargains, including some dishes at the Williams-Sonoma outlet that I use all the time and a sweater that I absolutely love. Were these great bargains worth the exhaustion? Probably not. It was fun for a one time thing, but it won’t be happening again this year (of course, I’m also doing Thanksgiving with a different group this year).
I don’t know how I feel about the bargain hunting trend. On one hand, saving money is awesome! But on the other hand, is there anything that I need so badly that I need to camp out the night before in order to get the best deal? I know for a lot of people, bargain hunting and Black Friday shopping is an adventure. I have one friend who goes purely to laugh at the ridiculousness of it all.
I understand the idea of getting the most for your money, and I totally get that parents are often working to make Christmas as great as possible for their children, but I sometimes wonder what sort of a lesson that teaches.
Either way, whatever you choose, enjoy your day after Thanksgiving. And if you do go shopping and find a great bargain, be sure to let everyone know!
Megan is a 40-something government employee in the Washington, DC area. She got interested in Personal Finance when she got out of college and realized that her paycheck wasn’t going to go as far as she had hoped. Since starting this blog, she has managed to buy a house and make a solid start on her retirement goals, and hopes to help others do the same. Here is her story:
In 2007, I was a gainfully employed 20-something with no debt but not a lot of knowledge about personal finance. It was a co-worker’s comment about Roth IRAs that sent me to the internet, searching for information. It was then that I realized that I really didn’t know a whole lot about personal finance and that my current financial situation was due a lot to inherent frugal tendencies, generous family members, a fear of debt, and good luck. While that was working for me, clearly I needed a better plan.
While I had no debt, I was also pretty much living paycheck to paycheck and not worrying about going over budget (I say this as if I had a real budget) because I had an emergency fund set aside to cover any overages.
Except that’s not what an emergency fund is for.
So I did a lot of research, read a lot of blogs, and decided that I needed a plan. I needed to budget. I needed to know what I was spending my money on. I needed to prepare for the future.
I decided to create a blog not only to make myself accountable to others but also to share the knowledge that I gained along the way. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers, and I hope that my readers can find something useful in what I have to share as well.