Frugal Tuesday ~ Black Friday?

I found out yesterday that Thanksgiving is NEXT week already. I thought I had another week. November’s been crazy this year. Between the election, Ben’s 7th birthday yesterday, and Sara’s hip dysplasia follow up appointment yesterday as well, I have had other things on my mind. When I realized that NEXT WEEK is Thanksgiving already, I panicked a bit. 🙂 I haven’t given THANKS any thought.

And Thanksgiving means Black Friday is right around the corner. Black Friday has traditionally been a fun shopping day for me, my mom, and my sister. My sister is rarely involved anymore since she lives in Seattle, but the three of us used to have a lot of fun heading out to the sales. My mom and I have continued the tradition, but we do it our way – hitting stores that aren’t traditionally packed and talking more than buying.

Recently, though, Black Friday really disturbs me. People being trampled to death at Walmart, the pushing and shoving, standing in line {in the cold} for hours to get in stores, none of that appeals to me. I am really disturbed to read that this year the madness is even starting on Thursday night with many stores opening at 9 pm on THANKSGIVING DAY! And really, all of it is to buy things we DON’T need, that may or may not be at rock-bottom prices. It’s really insane.

Despite all of that, I still plan to do a bit of Black Friday shopping. I will hit Walgreens and get stocking stuffers for as little out of pocket as I can. I give toiletry gift packs each year with razors, toothpaste, toothbrushes, and other useful things that my family generally appreciates. And I will hit Goodwill and Salvation Army, too. Did you know they also have sales on Black Friday?

Honestly, I’m not really convinced that Black Friday saves any money at all. And the big consumer push in this country makes my skin crawl. But I’ll be out for a little while at Walgreens – stocking up on toiletries and browsing at Goodwill and Salvation Army. Kid free. Hopefully with my mom. Drinking coffee and chatting. And while I am out, I will remember to be thankful for the many things we do have. Because even though I gripe sometimes about feeling poor, in reality, we have so much in this country.

How about you? What are your thoughts about Black Friday?

Linking up: Frugal Tuesday; Frugal Friday;

Comments

  1. My daughter and I have been shopping on Black Friday for years.. By Black Friday most of our shopping is finished. Its more about the time spent together then the actual shopping. I'm not real happy to see that some stores are open on Thanksgiving....after eating all the good food, who feels like moving off the sofa...LOL
  2. If I must shop, I am more of a cyber-Monday kind of gal. I can appreciate the tradition for some families, but some of the Black Friday shenanigans have gotten out of control. I am with you about that "big consumer push". Or as I call it the marketing machine. So many people can't distinguish want from need--which is all the more complicated if you have kids. Sometimes I find myself wanting to give sales associates a lesson in economics so they wouldn't look at me like I'm crazy when I tell them why certain promotions aren't really a good deal. I do like the idea of visiting small locally owned businesses on Black Friday even if they don't have deals.
  3. What kind of sales does your local goodwill have? The only place i typically go is JoAnn fabrics to see if i can save money on supplies for gift making. I also despise the whole door buster concept and trampling each other. My man and I have been doing hand made holidays since we have been together. It's hard work but we can, knit, craft, and he paints all year to give everyone a little something. It's quality dates together as well as staying clear of all the madness. I would definitely be interested in hitting my local goodwill though. :)
    • Salvation Army had half price on all clothes last year and Goodwill had specific tags marked down. I hope they do it again! :-) You can also sometimes find crafting supplies at those stores - wool sweaters, cloth, yarn, etc.
  4. I almost always go shopping on Black Friday, but I pick one or two stores close to my house, and have a carefully made list of things that really are great deals that I am giving as gifts. Sometime I do buy things for our own household, but once again, I have made sure it is a great deal and something we will really use/need. I go out just before 5 armed with my list, and can usually hit two stores, treat myself to a coffee when I'm done, and still be back home by 7. I avoid the malls, and never really want any of the "hot" items so I have never had any trouble. If you shop carefully and have a list, I think it is a great money saver.
  5. My sister and I started a Black Friday Girl's Night Out Tradition when she started college a few years ago. She rarely comes home and when she is home I barely get to see her. So we head out Thanksgiving night armed with snacks, water, extra shoes and socks and lots of coffee and goof off all night. We do stand in lines, we do occasionally head for a big ticket item, but overall we have fun and spend the quality sister time together that we miss out on the rest of the school year. One of our rules (yes, we have a list!!) is that if people are getting crazy or pushy around us, we get out of line and leave. We've only had to do it once. Usually we meet nice people and have great conversations. Last year at Toys'r'us we helped an older woman behind us in line, find a train table she was looking to get for her grandson and helped her load it in her cart. We did this before we went off to look for our own goodies. That's what the holidays are about. Putting others before yourselves, loving your neighbor and helping those in need. I think that is one of my favorite Black Friday memories. I just hope this year can live up to those standards!!!!
  6. I've found some great Black Friday deals in the past. But it seems like every year I'm more and more disappointed. This year I won't be doing it. Too much craziness to drag the kiddos out into.

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