Why Starting a Gift Closet will Save Your Sanity (and how to get started!)

Gift

You know the routine — you’re about to walk out of the house for a party or celebration and you realize that you don’t have a gift.  Everyone is dressed nicely, and you leave the kids in the car with your spouse to circle the parking lot while you run into Target to pick out something the recipient will love, which is also in your price range.

Yeah, like that ever works.

That’s the kind of crazy-making scenario I try my best to avoid.

We’ve all done it (right? Tell me it’s not just me.). Make a last minute scramble due to forgetfulness or procrastination and end up spending way more that you planned. But there is a better way to give gifts: a way to give better quality gifts AND save money doing it. That’s the beauty of the gift closet.
   The beauty of a gift closet is that you are totally saved from the mad dash trip described above. You’re saving:

 

1. Time – No one wants to spend a minute longer in the store with their kids than they need to.
2. Money – When you stock up in advance, you can focus on only purchasing items that are at rock-bottom prices.
3. Sanity – Never worry about a “surprise” birthday party again!

 

How to Start a Gift Closet:

 1. Keep an eye out at stores you already frequent. Often grocery stores have small toys, often on clearance. Check the dollar spot in Target, or the Dollar Store. Get familiar with the clearance section of all your favorite stores, and scour it regularly.

2. Score big at going-out-of-business sales.

3. Shop the end-of-season sales for next year.

4.  Take advantage of back to school sales — I stock up on Crayola crayons every year. Paired with a Jumbo coloring book from the dollar spot, this makes a fun little gift. I also keep these on reserve to pull out before long car rides!

5. Amazon is an amazing resource for stocking the gift closet. I often post great Amazon deals at stock up prices. One of my favorite gifts is an oversized Melissa & Doug Jumbo Coloring Pad  with a pack of crayons bought at the back to school sales. I do recommend Amazon Prime because you’ll always get free 2 day shipping. You will also get Prime streaming, some free Kindle books, and Prime music.

6.  I am really outing myself here, but I have found great gifts at yard sales! How? You might be surprised how many “New with Tags”  or “New in Package” items can be found among piles of other people’s stuff.  And, as always,  I make sure the item is something that someone I know will use and love.

If you prefer to make your gifts, check out my list of DIY Gift Ideas, too!

I post Amazon Toy Deals that are great for stocking up the gift closet regularly: you can see all the Amazon Toy Deals here.

 

What is your best tip for stocking a gift closet?