It seems inevitable that as the holidays approach like a train, your nerves start disappearing at the same rate.  No matter how much planning I do, I always forget one or two gifts until the last second.  This always ends up in extra stress for me, and that ever dreaded last minute trip to the mall.

I’m not sure that I have ever met a person who actually enjoys this last minute shopping trip, but I know so many who habitually do it.  So if it can’t be avoided, how can you make it easier?  Sadly, I’m not sure you can do much.  Lack of parking, stress, low finances, and gift lists eight miles long can always make for short tempers.  What makes it worse (at least to me) is that the gift I intended to get is constantly sold out.  Sending me to store after store in search of the one elusive gift.

Big Daddy and I loath this tradition so much we have gone out of our way to make it some how fun.  We’ve turned it into a game.  We bust out our cell phones, separate, and tackle the mall hunting down our goods.  How do you win this game?  It depends, the ultimate winner finds their loot the fastest.  You also get points for getting pictures of exciting things.  It’s almost like a scavenger hunt.  Find someone wearing a crazy outfit, spot someone eating a Cinnabon.  Spy someone who looks like a celebrity.   You get the idea, it can be anything, it is juvenile, I suppose, but at least it takes the most dreaded day of shopping and makes it slightly fun.

Happy shopping, and don’t forget to keep it light.  Smile at everyone, you’ll be surprised at how much fun it is.

-Stephanie Wright

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