Monday, 8 December 2014

Top Tips For Christmas 2014 – #2


These three are totally unconnected with each other, but have all been useful to me already this season, so I am passing them on.

Keep the place

lee circleIf you do have to use a huge, multi storey car park this busy season, get into the habit of writing your parking location on the back of your ticket before you leave the car.

When you come back three hours later, laden with shopping, utterly exhausted, you will be so glad that you noted down “Level 4, section D” or whatever. Especially if you forget, and start by looking for the blue Matiz you discarded for a silver Toyota three months ago!

Keep the same

vistaprint calendar

If you give a gift which is well received and repeatable – then give the same gift next year. In 2012, I gave my elderly housebound aunt a calendar from Vistaprint, featuring family photos. She loved it – and said my cousin wished she had got one like it.

So last year, they both received one – and their very positive response means that this year I’ve done another one for them. For some years, one of my sisters-in-law has generously sent me a magazine subscription.  She always checks I am happy with it, and has changed the mag a couple of times [currently I am enjoying Country Living] I love it when a new mag arrives each month. By keeping to the same gift, giver and recipient are both happy.

Keep the change


Set aside a purse, small box, jamjar or something and start putting small change into it. There seem to be so many more demands on you for small change at Christmas.

That way, when the doorbell rings at teatime and three spotty urchins are standing there singing ‘Away in a Manger’** and collecting for the local Hospice, you do not have to rootle around down the back of the sofa to find some grubby 2p pieces to drop in their tin. **I should declare here that I will only make a contribution if they sing a proper carol about baby Jesus – Frosty the snowman, We wish you a merry Xmas, and other ditties do not count!

other listI saw this graphic over the weekend. It is not a tip, but I liked the sentiment behind it so I thought I would share it. I do hope your Christmas preparations are going smoothly.

I really do appreciate all your comments on the blog – and have loved reading the Pause In Advent posts which so many of you have written. Thankyou


  1. The change one is very good. I sent some Carol singing kids away last week because I didn't have any change. Although, tbh I was expecting a little bit more than the first two words of "Silent Night" and then an expectant hand held out. :-)

  2. Great ideas! I have to agree with your sentiment for the carol singing. And also, if they are singing in a mocking, shouty way like the boys, standing giggling, I saw on Saturday, they will also not be receiving anything.(not even sure if they were collecting for anything noble! X

  3. I particularly love the last idea!

  4. LOL! only last week, shopping at asda, knew where I was parked but, was looking for a blue car instead of a red one - for the last year at least have mostly gone shopping with my sister, her car is blue!
    Love the 'list' at the end of your post. xxx

  5. Very good tips here! I like the last one best.:-)
    Blessings, ♥

  6. Love photo gifts - am making a book for Jon - BUT I start looking through photos and I am here hours!

  7. Angela - great parking tip! And loved the last list. Wishing you a blessed Christmas - I am so very disorganised this year! Cheers from Carole's Chatter

  8. I feel a bit bad that I haven't repeated the photo calendar for mum this year. The small change is excellent and I'm rooting it all out right now!

  9. I'm always making lists. I like the calendar idea and it's one I've been thinking about for grandparents as they are so hard to buy for.
    Thank you for sharing

  10. Great tips. I've been donating food to my local foodbank. That sentence is laden with sadness on so many levels. I hope more people will donate so no-one goes hungry on Christmas Day or beyond.


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