Have You Started Shopping for the Holidays?

Black Friday is now behind us and with the gift searching and shopping I have done online this weekend, I am definitely in holiday shopping mode. This year I am currently traveling abroad until the second week of December and with my husband deployed I have most of the holiday shopping on my shoulders. Consequently, I will be relying on online purchases even more than I have in the past since I can do it from the other side of the globe. I will probably brave the crowds once or twice after I get home to get last minute gifts, stocking stuffers and things of that nature, but it will feel nice to get home and have the main purchases out of the way.

I have started buying some smaller gifts online this weekend and am trying to finish making gift idea lists so I can make a dent in my holiday shopping over the next few weeks. I will continue the tradition I started a couple of years ago and have Santa’s gifts be wooden and I loved leaving his gifts unwrapped last year for the kids to see first thing in the morning. This year I am still trying to narrow down the choices for the kids, but would love to get my daughter a wooden doll pram, wooden washing machine or a dollhouse. I am leaning towards the doll pram or washing machine, but it is a hard decision. I am lucky that she is still young enough I have some say in the final decision, as I love having heirloom quality toys and like to have a say in what items I trip over throughout the day.

It is both my son’s second Christmas and his second birthday, so I am looking at a number of different things for the little guy’s big day. A wooden train table is a strong option for his train and car obsession, but his trucks and bulky toys could use some additional organization so I am also considering a wood toy chest. Not as exciting I know, but perhaps some personalization would step it up a notch and he is still young enough that I can get away with some more functional gifts. Thomas & Friends trains will be a sure hit in his stocking so I am looking at adding some of Thomas’ friends to his growing collection.

I still have many other family members to shop for after I check the main things off my kid’s lists, but will most likely get souvenirs here in Japan for my husband’s family. That leaves my family who I need to finish shopping for. My mother is an enthusiastic Japanese pottery collector and with Polish Pottery being so popular in the military community I am finding myself browsing patterns I think she would enjoy online. It may add a different splash of color to her collection or inspire a new genre to add to her large collection. My father is impossible to shop for, so I am not sure if he will get a separate gift from my mother, but I will continue to search for ideas for him while I am visiting.

My sister who will be with us for a couple of days this Christmas is a big shoe girl and I have been browsing some fun Seychelle boots she may enjoy or a Coach wristlet which is more in my price range. I am at a loss for what to get my younger brother who will also be joining us for the holidays, but he will be staying a little longer so I will likely get him something while he is there. Men in my family are always so hard to shop for. I still do not know what I will be getting my older brother’s family, but I will probably focus on their one-year-old and perhaps convert him to the Thomas & Friends bandwagon by getting him a train to start a collection or getting him a Green Toys vehicle my kids love.

I still have my darling husband to spoil, but since he is overseas I am brainstorming ideas of what I can get him. There are only so many things I can send abroad and it would not be as fun to get hims something that he cannot see or use until next summer or fall. I am thinking about getting him framed photos, sending artwork the kids have done and lots of perishable goodies he can enjoy. Any creative ideas are welcome!

I have linked my gift ideas above to eBay, which is a great site to find great deals or to price compare with items on your holiday wishlist. It is a site that I personally shop from throughout the year and I always price compare during the holidays to try and find the best deal for my purchases. In addition to my personal gift ideas above, eBay also has their own holiday gift guide, a mobile app to make shopping easier and a large range of sellers and products so you can find gifts for most people on your list.

Have you gotten your holiday lists finished and how much of your shopping will be online this year?


I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour for Mom Central Consulting on behalf of eBay. I received a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

{If you enjoyed reading Have You Started Shopping for the Holidays? I would be tickled pink if you left a comment. To read more about my green(er) parenting aspirations, advice and adventures be sure to subscribe to my RSS feed or get updates via email.}


By Emi Stapler. I am a cloth diaper advocate, green parenting blogger, mother of three and a military wife who enjoys sharing my motherhood adventures and advice. Follow me at The Cloth Diaper Report on Facebook, Twitter @TheCDReport , Google +, Pinterest and Instagram.

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