holiday $$ saving tips

Hi curvy curlies! My blogs are usually in the vein of self-care, so as we head into the holiday season, I decided to focus on the self-care of our wallets. Amen, somebody! A penny saved is a penny earned. And before you say it's too soon to think about holiday shopping, does it hurt to be proactive in grabbing deals? I think not! I am including the names of some of my favorite discount haunts and what they offer. I imagine many of the stores indicated below are regional (I am on the west coast), but certainly there are similar establishments across the country. Feel free to make recommendations in the comments section.

Rewards programs - CVS, Ralph's, VONS, etc. Be sure to use your rewards cards EVERY time you purchase at these stores. Collect your rewards at the gas pump and on in-store sale items! Also, make sure to flip those receipts over for deals at your local car washes, cleaners and eateries.

99 Cent Only Store - Plastic food containers, aluminum foil, gift bags, tissue paper, trash bags, disposable eating utensils, and antibacterial wipes.

Big Lots - Seasonal decorations (including artificial Christmas trees), cleaning supplies, soap, air fresheners, paper goods, seasonings, soups, sweeteners, and halloween candy. Stock up on things like chicken broth, flavor extracts and spices for holiday cooking. Big Lots carries all kinds of bakeware, too. One of my favorite finds was multi colored ramekins for under a dollar, each. Their rewards program offers great deals as well.

Marshalls's - Serving platters, kitchenware, hand towels, socks, workout gear, COFFEE!

Bed Bath & Beyond - Save ALL of those flyers that come in the mail. Keep them nearby. Those "20% off" discounts add up for BBB's yummy stocking stuffers (chocolate bars, teas, candy canes, as seen on TV items). BBB also carries restaurant grade (loose) silverware for your holiday party needs. Another thing I love about this store, is their selection of styling products for natural hair. I do not consider Bed Bath & Beyond a "discount" store, per se, but again, the coupons make a difference and they offer quality goods.

Trader Joes - I truly enjoy the seasonal specialty items TJ's offers like, pumpkin spice coffee and Christmas cookies, but the year-round sparkling cider, water, wine, and cheeses are lower priced than you'll find at most grocery stores. You should definitely stock up on their $1.00 greeting cards (buy a bunch for every occasion). Sugar, eggs and butter are competitively priced at TJ's as well as seasonings that mirror the festive times of year. 

Amazon Prime - If you prefer online shopping, the $100 (annual) membership fee is well worth the free and same day shipping for all things (last minute) gift ideas. 

Zoe's Vintique - Now, you know I couldn't leave this blog without some fashion finds for the holidays! Zoe's carries beautiful pieces; dresses, skirts, jackets, purses, jewelry and shoes. She'll have you slaying all the holiday parties in vintage and funky looks for super reasonable prices. She ships too!

While I am aware bigger savings can be had by shopping wholesale and in bulk, I believe taking advantage of day-to-day deals is instant gratification.

Happy savings!