Happy Thanksgiving. Let the Holiday Shopping Season Begin!
Are you an expert? If you are, then talk about it!

Forget Black Friday madness. Momma’s shopping online!

By Amanda Ponzar

Shopping crowd Unless you’re traveling by private helicopter with a security team, who needs the stress, crowds, traffic and frantic mall panic of Black Friday shopping? Being a busy working mom, it’s just easier to compare prices and products online and have boxes magically show up at my front door.

Since women make 85% of all consumer purchases, both online and brick & mortar retailers need to pay attention to what we want. As my two-year-old told me last month: “Men go to work. Ladies don’t go to work. Ladies go to Target and Walmart.” You got that right.

So, here’s MY Christmas list this year (note it’s mostly online); you may find something you like!

Browneez_products 1.) Zettie’s Confections: Zettie’s double chocolate browneez are my absolute favorite, but the almond butter crunch (toffee), frosted sugar cookies and award-winning ultimate chip cookies (three kinds of chips) are pretty amazing too. Always good to support a woman-owned, start-up business – everything’s handcrafted with gourmet ingredients. 

2.) Avon: I like pomegranate mango Naturals, Total Radiance eye gel, Totally Twig Perfect Wear lipstick, etc. but everything’s on sale and my rep often sends me free shipping codes.

Green pearls 3.) Lana’s handmade jewelry

4.) Speaking of jewelry, I love 10,000 Villages fair trade shops, which offer beautiful necklaces, children’s gifts, wonderful-smelling soaps, and other site best-selling gifts.  

5.) Starbucks gift cards are good for peppermint mocha or java chip frappachinos…and maybe a chocolate chip cookie.  

6.) I don’t get out much so prefer to buy movies on Amazon rather than attempt to find a babysitter plus pay $12/ticket –- and that’s not even counting the mega popcorn tub. My son only watches Veggie Tales; however, my favorite movies include Pride and Prejudice (all versions), Lord of the Rings, Star Trek, Indiana Jones, Harry Potter or newer releases like Avatar, Robin Hood, Prince of Persia, etc. Plus, based on the chocolate addiction readily apparent in this blog, I’m getting a treadmill from Amazon.

7.) One of the best chocolates I’ve EVER had in my entire life: the Chocolate Truffle Fudge Bar.  Watch out Godiva! I recently discovered this treat at the Sugar Cube, a woman-owned candy store.

Wench11.19.10 8.) Activities with the family like Medieval Madness (nothing beats eating meat with your hands while a jester dances and wenches serve) or Hershey Candy Lane. Just plain FUN. See what’s going on in your community.

9.) I asked my brother what else he wanted besides “How to Train Your Dragon” on blu-ray (surprise! that’s what you’re getting), and he requested a charitable contribution. Many charities offer alternative gift ideas/cause marketing as well, and it’s a GREAT way to give back:

According to Cone’s holiday trend tracker, 89% of Americans expect companies to support causes during the season and 78% expect to get involved personally.

So, what are your gift recommendations this year? Share and I’ll post!  

(Pictured: mall crowds, Zettie's double chocolate browneez, Lana's green freshwater pearl necklace, Medieval Madness wench taking ale orders)


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Kim Myers

Hi Amanda,

Thanks for the shout out about Carpenter's Shelter's Alternative Holiday Giving on your blog. Great site by the way!




You are right. Online shopping is much better option and that's the reason I always go for online shopping whether it's normal grocery shopping or special festive shopping. And, it is much to my pleasure that in Dubai too (where I am going to stay for another three-four year) online shops are being opened. I got the information at www.hellotrade.com/blog.

Amanda Ponzar

Hurray, M'Lou! For those of you who haven't watched all the versions of Pride and Prejudice, here they are:
-- Lawrence Olivier and Greer Garson (1940)
-- Colin Firth in BBC's 5-hour extravaganza (1995)
-- Keira Knightley and Matthew MacFadyen (2005)
-- Then there's Bollywood's Bride and Prejudice (2004)
-- And even Renee Zellweger and Colin Firth again (as Mark "Darcy") in Bridget Jones' Diary (2001)

Any I'm missing?

Amanda Ponzar

Another delicious chocolate: Wilbur Buds! http://www.wilburbuds.com/ (a Pennsylvania favorite where I'm from)!

M'lou Arnett

I have not yet figured out why anyone goes to the stores on Black Friday. I do nearly all of my Christmas shopping online and have for the last decade.

My favorite charity gift to give this time of the year is Heifer International. It's a fun gift to give and is unique because it's truly the gift that keeps on giving. When you give the gift of an animal through Heifer International, the recipient is required to share the bounty and progeny and pass the gift along. Check it out. http://www.heifer.org/

So glad to read of someone who lists all versions of Pride & Prejudice at the top of her movie list (I have 3 versions on my computer for anytime watching!)

Happy holidays!


One site where I know there will be a sale is LadyUmbrella (http://www.ladyumbrella.com) Coupon code blackfriday30 will get 30% off + free shipping + first 10 orders get a free Christmas card..Hope some of your readers like..ole :)


Hi Amanda.
Seems like you have a sweet tooth leading your shopping list. I just got done reading the Thanksgiving day paper and there are so many sales. Most offers can be had online as well. So I'll be doing that vs. getting up at 4am. Have a Happy Thanksgiving day & enjoy the weekend.

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