Once more unto the fray…

Today’s the day I start my Christmas shopping – I have a budget, a list, and am full of good intentions…what could possibly go wrong?

I am determined to get everything ordered, bought and dare I say it, wrapped by the time the children break up from school. This is an annual mantra, but this year I’m serious. No I will not be flying onto the night bus panic buying in Selfridges at 10pm on December 23 – that way lies madness, empty bank accounts and disappointed children.

So, today I start with the teenagers – I will begin by working out who gets what, whether I can get vouchers for any of them, and then if possible order things online (maximising my Kiddy Bank account by buying it through KidStart of course). Then when I absolutely have to buy it in person, I will make a guerrilla raid on one or two shops for specific items only! Repeat after me:  I will not be distracted into buying boxed sets of anything, however desperate my stash of presents for’ awkward -to- buy -for men’  looks, nor will I be tempted into buying  Danish  snowflake sweaters of any description, or wandering aimlessly into Lush without a list for protection.

So here are my three do’s and don’ts when Christmas shopping:


1. Do insist that each member of the family writes a list but leave them a week to sleep on it

2. Do work out how many presents you are getting each member of the family and stick to it – it’s easier to work out than restricting yourself to an equal budget for each

3. Do shop strategically – it can take you an entire morning to track down one thing so don’t panic – yet!


1. Don’t pop into Covent Garden “just for some inspiration” save that for a congratulatory coffee with your mates once you’re done

2.Don’t max out your credit card – share the load otherwise your credit rating will look very sick come the New Year

3. Don’t buy generic emergency catch all presents just in case – they always look like an after thought and once you start you won’t know when to stop.

I will be tweeting from Oxford Street – keep me company!