Monday, December 15

Frugality & procrastination don't mix.

Well, I screwed up big time.

I was absolutely sure that MyPoints emailed the gift certificate code to me. So I put off ordering the cards until this weekend, to ensure that I would have the full amount necessary for 2 $50 cards.

Turns out, I was wrong. The gift cards are mailed, which means I'll be lucky to get them in 2 weeks. Meanwhile, Amazon informed me I had only 6 days left for standard shipping to arrive in time for Christmas.

In other words, I would have to pay cash now and then sell the cards on eBay when they finally arrived. Which would mean getting maybe $90 after fees, etc.

Luckily, Mom routinely buys textbooks from Amazon. So she ordered for me, and I'll hand over the gift cards when they arrive.

Basically, I have once again proven that frugality & procrastination are natural enemies. In fact, procrastination costs people plenty: late fees, forgetting to cancel memberships, etc.

I'm sure all of you are plenty prepared and would never let such things happen. But just in case the unthinkable has happened -- and because you now have only a couple more days to order with standard shipping and still get items in time for Christmas -- I'm offering some ideas for gifts under $25:

  • First, visit the i pick up pennies' Amazon store at the bottom of the page for plenty of apparel for the comic-book-lover in your life. I created a category called, "Geek Chic" and almost every piece in there is under $20.

  • Also on Amazon, consider finding great bargain books from Amazon sellers. Plenty of "Used -- Like New" which I have gotten and they really look untouched! I got a boxed set of 3 books by The Sweet Potato Queens (perfect for the sassy lady in your life) for $1.48 plus $3.99 tax.

Also good for light and funny reading are Terry Pratchett novels, which I'm getting Tim into. Need some good chick lit? I love Marian Keyes. Buying for the more serious literature type? Try Ann Patchett, Richard Powers or Isabel Allende. Harry Potter fan who's restless now the series is over? Try the Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer. Allende also has some very well-written young adult books, so check hers out, too!

  • If you know a bookworm with no space for books, consider a rental plan, like the one at BooksFree -- where you can get a plan with regular books or audiobooks. Audiobooks are great for people with reading or visions problems, or for those with severe illnesses. (They saved my sanity in the hospital!) Plans start at $9.99, and you can get a 10% discount on gift-plans and renewals through 12/25.

  • Just about everything on Levita is under $25. Many items are under $15! I'm in love with lots of this jewelry. If I weren't already surrounded by stuff I didn't wear, I'd buy everything below (and then some)! Free shipping on all orders, but today's the last day if you want your order to ship before Christmas.

Textured silver bracelets (4), also available in hematite ($9.99):

Curved sickle earrings ($6.49):

3" Purple Glass Oval Hoop Rhodium Earrings

Shower rings vintage gold earrings also available in silver ($6.49):

3" silver earrings w/ diamond accents also available in gold ($5.99):

Garnet necklace ($17.99):

Silver chain w/ faux pearls ($13.99):

Silver-plated wild shape necklace ($16.99)

  • Shoe lover? Give them a gift certificate to Gotham Online. Or pick up some $19.97 Bandolinos or Steve Maddens for yourself.

  • Snarky person? T-shirt lover? Busted Tees will have just the thing! Shirts from $7.77 to $20.

  • Marvel is having some pretty decent holiday sales, as well as some decently priced regular merchandise.

Calendars from $8.95
Videos (animated & film) from $14.98
Mugs, watches, bobbleheads & lunchboxes $6.95-21.95

Shirts under $20

Spidey bobblehead ($6.95):

Silver Surfer shirt ($11.21):

Hulk bust bank ($14.95):

Ben 10 lunchboxes, shirts, watches, etc $2.50-$14.95
Foster's shirts (from $4.25), jewelry ($3.25), keychains, etc
Billy & Mandy "Clowns hate tangelos" T-shirt ($8.48)

Star Wars watch ($12.95):

Foster's "I'm a hot toe picker" shirt ($4.25):

Ben 10 Kevin 11 & Max Transforming Alien Rocks ($2.50):

  • The WB shop has a multitude of lines: Looney Tunes, Harry Potter, Scooby, DC Comics

Batman shirt ($8.48):

Dumbeldore's Army Messenger bag ($21.71)

Superman messenger bag ($16.85)

Harry Potter heat-sensitive mug ($14.95):

Superman thermal shirt ($17.50)

Corpse Bride shirt ($8.48):

Where the Wild Things Are ($16.22):

T3 skull figure ($7.98):

Superman silver cuff links ($9.98)

Charlie & The Chocolate Factory Hoodie ($20):

Harry Potter bookmarks ($10.50):

Speedy Gonzalez hoodie ($20):



Blogger The J said...

On the other hand, procrastination has saved me loads of $$. "Wait until I find it at a second hand shop/garage sale/kijiji/on the side of the road" - surprisingly sometimes I do find it in those places. Sometimes I find a way around it, or a way to make it. Many times I actually forget what was a big "need" a month ago. It's shocking how much you can save by not buying what you need right away!

Library fines though... at least we're supporting a good cause ;).

December 16, 2008 at 4:40 AM

Blogger Abby said...

Okay, procrastinating on buying retail is one thing. but procrastinating on things on a specific timetable.... sigh.

December 16, 2008 at 12:49 PM

Blogger Shtinkykat said...

I'm glad to hear you found a way around the proscrastination penalty. Procrastination often ends up in a late fee for me. :-(
Thanks for listing the great deals. Have you considered a career in personal shopping?

December 16, 2008 at 8:36 PM

Blogger Abby said...

Haha, Shtinkykat, if I thought I could make a career of personal shopping, I'd be a happy gal!

But you can feel free to sign up as my first customer! (Maybe I could specialize in people shopping for game-geeks/comic-book-nerds/adult-swim-watchers.)

December 16, 2008 at 10:31 PM

Blogger Shevy said...

Procrastination is my middle name. And, yes, it usually costs lots of money. (Library books, what library books? Shhh.)

December 17, 2008 at 12:00 AM


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