Thursday, November 19, 2009

Black Friday '09 anyone?

A week from tomorrow it happens again. Throngs of intrepid bargain-hunting warriors will hit the malls and department stores in search of those great deals that last from 5 AM - 9 AM or 11 AM depending on the chain. Already there are websites set up with 'leaked' Black Friday ads so serious shoppers can plan their attacks.

Okay. So I'm usually one of them. And yes, I've peeked at those ads once or twice. And made a few lists. But this year's list is different from past years'. For me--and I suspect--for many other Americans who are feeling the pinch. While Christmas is generally a time for gift 'wishes' to come true, this year I imagine many folks will be a bit more--discriminating--in their purchases, going for functionality over flair.

Times are tough all over. Many state governments are facing huge budget deficits and must cut their spending to balance their checkbooks. Our state is no different. To avoid drastic layoffs, furlough days (i.e. days off without pay) have been mandated. So Santa will have to tighten his rather large belt this year.


So here's how my shopping list has adapted to the new budget restrictions:

Wish I Could
42 inch LCD HDTV
New HP Laptop
Cashmere Sweaters
Wii system with Wii Fit
Large set of pots and pans

$2 DVDs
8 GB Flash Drive
Electric throw
$8 running suit
Micro meals

You get the idea...sigh.

Good thing Christmas isn't about the gifts.

So how is your gift-giving shaping up? Are you changing your purchasing habits this year? Buying less? Going for needs rathers than 'wants'? Will you be venturing out among the masses come next Friday morn?

Even though I won't be power-shopping this year, I'll probably drag my tail to the local stores to observe the craziness. Purely for writing research purposes, of course. :)

~Bullet Hole~


TerriOsburn said...

I've never done the crazy black Friday thing, but I'm considering it this year. Only because I really want a netbook and I'd rather pay under $200 if I can. So I'll check the ads and see if I can find one, if not, I'll be avoiding the stores as usual.

My dad is having to do the furlough thing and he doesn't work for any state government. They are taking the entire week of Thanksgiving and two weeks at Christmas without pay. Talk about picking a bad time of year.

Leona said...

You are a brave soul. Any time that I have been caught in the after Thanksgiving Christmas Sales, I've either been working, or I've had kid medicine in my hands. It is the only inducement to get me out in that craziness.

Black Friday is an adept phrase indeed! lol

Kathy Bacus said...

Sorry to hear your dad is furloughing, too, Terri. While no time is good to be without your regular take-home pay, it is especially hard at the holidays.

I still have a job so that's what matters. I can do without my list of 'wants'.


Kathy Bacus said...

I pity two of my kids who work in two of the larger chain department stores, Leona. They have no choice but to deal with the Black Friday crowds. I can still opt out if I'm so inclined.

Who knows? I might decide to sleep in and avoid all the craziness...



Kristi said...

My husband is dragging me out at 4am to wait in line at Target. He had to bribe me with breakfast at IHOP to get me to even consider it. We don't need all that much this year, no big ticket items. He just loves to go. We get 98% of our Christmas shopping done in one day.

I swear one of these days I'm going to beat someone with a shopping cart though. People are horrible on that day. Like if they don't run you down they might miss out on something.

Kathy Bacus said...

I hear you, Kristi. It's brutal out there. And supposedly, they are doing things differently this year and making folks line up for certain items and get a ticket to purchse it. Won't that be fun?

I do like the fact that I generally am able to get the lion's share of my Christmas shopping done that day. Lets me enjoy the remainder of the holiday season without the added pressure of gift-getting.


Terry S said...

I actually like going to the Black Friday sales even if it is only to people watch.

That said, I don't think I'm going this year. I've been scrimping and saving to pay some unexpected expenses for several months now, and it had become somewhat of a habit. I really spluged on some yarn yesterday and am now feeling like I want to stay cozy, warm, DRY (it's raining again) and be creative instead.

Brandy said...

I usually stay home. For the last two years my hubs has braved the crowds and gone shopping for me. *G* I set a budget for our kids and the Out-laws. And am sticking to it. I also keep a detailed list of what I've bought and how much it cost so that I know how much more I have to spend. We've never gone crazy on expensive gifts and aren't going to start this year.

Kathy Bacus said...

I'm getting used to being a pinch-penny, Terri. I also find as cold weather moves in, more and more staying put inside my warm, cozy home holds much appeal.

Still, there are some screamin' deals--if you want to contend with the crowds.


Kathy Bacus said...

Sounds like a good plan, Brandy. I know I set a budget and try to adhere to it, too. This year, in particular, I plan to keep it simple and just enjoy the time with family and friends.


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