Sunday, December 05, 2004

C-minus 19 Days

Have you failed to register that Christmas is less than three weeks away? Me, too; this is why I do my shopping in August. Only I couldn't this year because we were being pounded by hurricanes.

This year I've resorted to lots of online shopping and gift card giving. The best presents I give, everyone agrees, are gift certificates. They're also a fine way to say "I love you but you really need to get out of the house."

Seriously, gift certificates are cool. I recommend the ones they sell for grocery stores -- remember, everyone has to eat -- and folks on a fixed income especially appreciate it. When I offered to get her whatever she wanted this year, my own mother asked for a Publix gift card (which is what I got her and Dad last year.)

Online, I try to shop at unique sites. For Anglophiles and A&E's Mystery! series lovers, there is an online version of the Acorn catalog. Shopping hint: If you put in the source code for the Fall 2004 print catalog you'll get a free Rumpole DVD with your order.

The Smithsonian Store has something for just about everyone on your list, and it's all gorgeous stuff. I can attest to the speed and superiority of their packaging and delivering. Shopping hint: Smithsonian members get 10% off everything.

Like many authors, I am addicted to shopping at His Nibs, my personal online source for unique fountain pens and writing instruments. Norman always has something fun or totally unexpected to offer on the site, with a wide range of prices to suit every budget. His customer service is fast and flawless, too. Shopping hint: visit the Palace for special deals.

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