Black Friday is finally here! But don’t think this the only time you can save on #holiday #gifts — the day is only the start of Cyber Week and other retailer promotions. Good Housekeeping is tracking some of the week’s best deals, and CNET offers a shopping widget you can use with your internet browser to make sure you get the best price on millions of items. Don’t forget to shop local on Small Business Saturday and throughout the holiday season, either — shopping local businesses is typically more sustainable and ecofriendly than shipping a gift thousands of miles to your door. #BlackFriday2023
Happy Thanksgiving! If you plan to go out shopping on Black Friday, don’t forget to check out the local #thrift stores, many of which are supplied by generous donations to ClothingDonations.org. If you have qualms about #giving #secondhand goods, remember that most thrift stores are stocked with lots of clean, lightly used and one-of-a-kind clothing items and housewares, as well as hard-to-find books, games, furniture and other goods. Taking a cue from the big retailers, many thrift stores have their own Black Friday promotions, so you can get even better discounts on used goods and pay up to 90% less on #gifts. #BlackFriday2023
To #save money on Black Friday, this advice bears repeating: Don’t buy anything you don’t need. Sale prices may prove irresistible in stores and online, and you may be tempted to get things that you and your giftees may not really want or use, says The Simply Organized Home. Stay away from the malls, shut down the computer and enjoy a plate of leftovers. Continue to give thanks for the things you have and maybe even do a little #decluttering or #holiday decorating with the extra day off. You’ll save money and probably create a more comfortable living environment for yourself and your family. #BlackFriday2023
With #Halloween in the rearview and temperatures dropping fast, it’s on to November and the #holidays. ’Tis the season that you’ll see more #stuff than ever, as you give and get gifts, bake up platters of cookies, prepare your home for guests, get the good China out and put up the decorations.
But November can also be a month of measured austerity. The Great American Smokeout happens mid-month every year, and No-Shave November encourages cancer prevention and awareness. But there’s an unofficial cause you can take up in the effort to lead a calmer, more stress-free life: #No-Clutter November.
You can start with décor items that don’t get used, Organize Your Stuff Now says. As you #decorate for the fall and winter #holidays, take a good look at the stuff that doesn’t make the cut. You don’t need to save that stuff for next year — you aren’t using it, so get rid of it now. When you pack the decorations away again in January, they will take a lot less space.
Chances are you’ll be spending more time in the kitchen, too, making cookies, a dish to pass or hosting a full feast yourself. As you prepare, have a box handy and throw any shabby kitchen towels, hot pads and oven mitts in it. Do the same as you go through your drawers and cabinets; there are probably utensils that you haven’t used in years.
It’s also a great time to assess your cold-weather #clothing, much of which you’ll be getting out for the first time in November. “We recommend people #declutter their collection of hats, scarves and gloves,” professional organizer Diane Quintana told Homes & Gardens. “Look at these items critically. If they are in good condition but [you don’t] want to use them anymore, release them so someone else can benefit from them.”
To attack No-Cutter November aggressively, First for Women suggests, eliminate one item on Nov. 1, two on Nov. 2 and so on. You’ll eventually have a pile of 465 items that you don’t want or use, and you can #trash, give away or #donate them to ClothingDonations.org by arranging a #free #donation #pickup. By the end of the month, your home will be #decluttered and #streamlined — and you’ll be ready to meet the holidays head-on.
The U.S. Flag Code suggests retiring damaged or worn U.S. flags in “a dignified way, preferably by burning.” The Vietnam Veterans of America, American Legion and Scouts often offer assistance in flag disposal, collecting used flags and ending their service at public events. “If you can’t drop [your used flag] off with one of the aforementioned groups, you can do your own small ceremony — as long as it’s still held in a dignified manner,” says the U.S. Department of Defense. Fold the flag into its customary tucked triangle and build a fire big enough to fully incinerate it. Place the flag on the fire, salute and hold a moment of silence. #FlagDay