Day 1- Christmas/Holiday Traditions
Christmas is a big deal at our house. I love coming home from school and seeing the house decorated with everything Christmas, including Nativity scenes, Santas and snowmen. My mom also lights this candle that makes the house just smell like Christmas. On Christmas Eve we go to the 5 o'clock church service with our family, and my aunt and her family (and now Natalie and I's boyfriends), I love singing Silent Night with candles lit. We then go to Chili's! Haha. No one feels like cooking and it is on our way home from church. I always make sure my dad leaves a good tip for the poor waiter or waitress though. We then come home and my sister and I open matching pajamas and a book (my parents gave us the book to keep us occupied if we were too excited for Santa to sleep!). We usually end up watching a Christmas movie, either White Christmas (my favorite!) or It's A Wonderful Life, and then heading to bed. Around five or six am, my sister, who is almost nineteen STILL comes into my room and wakes me up to go wake up my mom and dad. We do, and then my dad heads downstairs, takes pictures of the presents, and we have to walk all the way around the house to walk in the opposite door we normally do, because we stop at the nativity scene and read a precious moments book of the Christmas story to remind us what Christmas is all about. Then we get to open presents! I open mine slowly, while my sister tears through hers, and my mom thinks every year I don't like what I was brought, but I just don't jump up and down like my sister does! We then head to my aunts in our pajamas and have breakfast and open presents there, before coming home, showering and having lunch/dinner with my dad's family. I love our Christmas traditions :)
Day 2- Black Friday/ Shopping Tips
I have never actually been Black Friday shopping! We play UVA every year, and I always end up heading to either Charlottesville or Blacksburg for the game (it's rivalry week- GO HOKIESSSS!!!). However, I am usually a pretty thrifty shopper.
1. Shop around, especially online. Figure out what you want and search it online for a lower price. If you get that price, plus shipping for less than what is in the store, perfect!
2. Pay attention to those sales that go automatically in the Junk mail. Sometimes there are great codes for things that are already on sale. This past fall, I got two dresses and a skirt from Ann Taylor Loft for eight dollars TOTAL!
3. Always, always, always look for coupon codes and shop using ebates. These can help you save money, and get money back! (can you tell I love shopping online!)
4. Homemade gifts are always the best. I know some of my favorite gifts I've given were homemade and a fraction of the cost of a bought gift. Painting a sign or making something specific to that person shows that you took the time to make something especially for them.
Have a great day!