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The rush is on

One of my father’s favorite expressions back in the day when his sons were caught window-shopping still rings in my ears today.


“You’re old enough for your wants not to hurt you,” he would say as I peppered him with questions about the latest cool gadgets, toys or clothing I wanted.

Despite that sage advice, my brother and I never lacked for anything growing up, especially at Christmas time, when we spent the morning benefiting from the giving spirit of our parents.

If your wallet hasn’t already run dry this holiday shopping season, recall the findings of the National Retail Federation which expects consumers to spend an average $749.51 in November and December. 

Give thanks for what you have one day and fight over something you don’t need the next, a friend of mine recently observed when seeing video of two men reportedly fighting over a pair of shoes last weekend at a sale in California.

Some suggestions for avoiding the budget-busting days ahead, courtesy of the Associated Press, include creating a budget and abiding by it, having a spending plan in place, using layaway, watching out for scams and limiting credit card use.

Consumers are advised not to open a credit card account just to get a deal and not fall for a deal that appears too good to be true.

They’re all wise suggestions, but the biggest of all is to just use good old, plain common sense.

My shopping philosophy is buy spring merchandise at the beginning of fall and winter merchandise during the spring and summer months.

I also try and do an inventory once in a while to determine what still fits and what I truly need.

Try to avoid the title character of “The Great Gatsby,” awash in material possessions he can’t possibly hope to enjoy in his lifetime.

Enjoy the spirit of giving rather than receiving, and remember the “reason for the season.”

Relax and enjoy what comes your way.