One of my favorite things to do is shop the post-holiday sales for non-holiday items at 50-75% off. And my two favorite holidays for post-shopping are Christmas and Easter.
Don't get my wrong; I pick up my share of holiday paraphernalia, of course. Last week, I got my supply of plastic eggs for next year, as well as egg decorating dye. I also got some Easter candy, but we won't be saving that until next year but rather eating it slowly until the next candy holiday comes around. And at Christmas, I finished my collection of unbreakable ornaments and got a few other items for my (mythical? hopeful?) advent calendar.
But I also love to get things I can use for other purposes. I posted earlier about how I got many of J's birthday decorations after Christmas because I handily chose a red, white, and blue theme, and all the red holiday decor worked right into my plan. This year, after Easter, I picked up a huge butterfly shaped sandwich/cookie cutter (for making PB&J so much more exciting!), purple plaid cupcake liners (I can think of any number of events to which these would add a welcome note of whimsy), spring colored tissue paper for gifts bags, and a new cupcake pan, with cover for transporting, all for half off. What's the difference between this Wilton cupcake pan and the one I bought in January when I decided my previous pan was kaput? One cost 50% less than the other. Otherwise, identical. In the past, I've gotten green dish towels after Easter, in colors that match my kitchen rug, an egg-shaped chip/dip dish that has come in handy too many times to mention, and lovely spring-colored bowls I have used throughout the year. This year I wasn't able to visit as many sales as I have in the past, with my less than patient dynamic duo in tow, but, even so, I was happy with our conquests.
Sadly, now begins the long post-holiday shopping drought. 4th of July? Everything is way too kitschy, usually, to be of much use to me. Summer provides luau supplies which I always seem to need every year, though the selection is always random. Halloween is sometimes useful for getting Halloween decorations and, lately, for stocking up on pumpkin items for my pumpkin obsessed preschooler. Thanksgiving merchandise would be nice to have sometimes, particularly some of the fall colored serving dishes, but there is never really a set time for "fall" items to go on sale. And then it's Christmas and Easter again and time to score!
Oh, and celebrate the reasons for the seasons, of course! Here's hoping yours was both a holy and a happy day!