Holiday Shopping Ideas

Tis the season!

The holiday decorations are in full twinkle mode and they’ve put me in the holiday spirit, and that means it’s time to go shopping.  When Black Friday rolled around, my daughter and I entered our first store before 8:00 a.m. … with coffee in hand, of course.

Gambels Quail

Our lists were short, and although we didn’t need to brave the masses on Black Friday, it’s kind of our mother – daughter tradition. I don’t enjoy shopping as much as I once did, but I still love strolling the stores around the holiday season, especially with my daughter.

Chili Chocolate Festival Desert Botanical Garden

Ashton buys some locally grown honey at the Chili and Chocolate Festival at the  Desert Botanical Garden

However, we did start our shopping a couple of weeks before Black Friday when we visited the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden. The garden was hosting a Chili and Chocolate Festival which was too intriguing to miss. Nothing like shopping with a glass of wine in hand while chocolate samples are being passed out. Oh yum! Note to self to attend next years event. Is there such a thing as too much chocolate? I think not!

Shop till you drop

Don’t shop till you drop!

All those extra calories were easily burned off on our Black Friday shopping excursion when Ashton and I walked over 6 miles and 13,000 steps. Between all those steps, we managed to squeeze in a tasty meal at the Yard House and eventually checked off most of the items on our lists.

We had a fun day and didn’t think the crowds here in Phoenix were too overwhelming. We’ve experienced a lot worse during earlier years while shopping near Denver on Black Friday. Hmm, wonder if more folks are choosing to shop online.

I do have a few more gifts to buy, but I too intend to make those purchases online. Yep, Black Friday was fun, but I’ll let my fingers do the walking while fulfilling the rest of my Christmas list. After all, I don’t intend to shop till I drop! Although, after cyber Monday, I may experience signs of carpal tunnel 😆

Have you started shopping yet? Do you need some help with ideas? I’ve put together a list of some of our favorite items. Please note, these are affiliate links.

Desert Botanical Garden Phoenix

This photo was taken mid November in Phoenix. Flowers bloom year round in the desert.

Camera Gear

Okay, for those of you who have followed my blog for a while, you know how much I love photography, but I have a hard time calling myself a photographer and refer to myself as a snap-shooter. Sure there are times I pull out the tripod and really focus on composition and camera settings, but that’s not the norm for me. Most of the time, I hand hold the camera, set it to auto or program, and snap away. I do have a ton of fun doing so and don’t take my photography too seriously. With that in mind, here are a few of my recommendations. Note – I do have an entire page dedicated to my camera gear.

If you want to take your photography up a notch but don’t want to be bothered with changing camera lenses, this Panasonic LUMIX DMC-FZ300K might be the perfect fit for you. I shoot with an earlier model and absolutely love my camera. My latest edition is a PANASONIC LUMIX DC-ZS70K. This is a powerhouse of a camera in a little package. All of my photos shared on this post were taken with the PANASONIC LUMIX DC-ZS70K

I do travel with a couple of inexpensive tripods – VANGUARD  Tripod  and JOBY GorillaPod

I love gear bags. Thank goodness I don’t have extra storage space. When we moved into the RV full-time my handbag/purse addiction got purged along with everything else 😲 But gotta have someplace to put the camera gear and keep it protected. Ah, so many cute camera bags these days.

In the Kitchen

We don’t go out to eat very often, much preferring to eat at home. However, having a small kitchen can present a few obstacles, one of which is storage. Thus, I’ve had to pick my priorities as to items I can’t live without …. BUT … there are items we can live without, but oh so fun to have.

RV Related Gift Ideas …

And more gift ideas ….


Hope I’ve given you some gift ideas whether it be for a loved one or yourself. I know there’s a couple of items on this list that I’ll be ordering.

I’ve tried to add these links to pop up in a new tab, but not all cooperated 🤔 If you get taken away from my site, hit your back arrow to return.

Happy shopping and just a reminder,

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Wish me luck on cyber Monday ….

Salt River Arizona

My search for fall colors continues – not much luck for me this year.

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39 thoughts on “Holiday Shopping Ideas

  1. You are braver than I. Never been to a Black Friday event. I hate crowds and shopping, the combination would be a re-enactment of my worst nightmare. But, I have about 98% of my shopping done…gotta love the internet. 😁

    • I’m usually not a fan of crowds myself, but there’s something about the hustle and bustle of Christmas shopping on Black Friday that I weirdly find amusing. Thankfully, it wasn’t toooo crowded this year.

  2. It is so interesting to me that you are the third blogger I visit today, who mentions the Danish tradition of hygge. Must be a new (to us) concept… I don’t like shopping at all, but most things we buy, we order online, so Cyber Monday is more beneficial than Black Friday to us. Because of our lifestyle, we rarely celebrate the holidays with our loved ones, so shopping is easy. And cheap. 🙂

    • Our family is small and for extended members out of state, we no longer exchange gifts. Thus, our Christmas list isn’t very long, but I do enjoy shopping … not nearly as much as I once did. Yeah, I just recently was enlightened on Hygge and ordered that book as a gift. I’m rather curious!

  3. Great list. I used to enjoy going out every Friday very early. Not into that any more. With age comes wisdom…lol
    I love that apron. What a hoot.

    • If it weren’t for spending the day with my daughter, I doubt I would’ve gone out shopping on Black Friday. I already have that apron as well as a very funny hippie one which had my neighbors doing a double take when I was outside grilling with it on 😃

  4. We have the Weber gas grill in our RV basement,and LOVE it..also have a clock that projects temp and time on our bedroom ceiling..This is one thing we take in when we go home too..I love knowing how to dress according to the outside temp! We just did some online shopping for our 9 and 6 year old Wolff cubs..The older grand kids get moola, green stuff, cash..and love it.

    • Sounds like you got your Christmas list under control. We’re keeping it simple around here this year, but it’s still fun to get out and pick up a few trinkets. Nice to see you on the road heading south!

    • I tried to list some of our favorites as well as a few things on our list. Although we’re keeping it simple this year, it has still been fun shopping. Hope you’re enjoying that FL sunshine!

    • When we lived in Colorado, Ashton and I would shop at Park Meadows on Black Friday and it was always a crowded zoo, but we loved the madness. I’ll jump at the chance for a mother/daughter day regardless of what we do 😊

  5. I cannot believe you are struggling to find Fall colours over there, I thought that beautiful place would be in abundance with those golden hues. Happy holiday season and no not started shopping yet, I have to get going as it’ll be upon us in no time at all! 🙂

    • The desert southwest isn’t exactly abundant with leaf producing trees and cactus don’t change color 😁 Thus, seeing fall colors takes some scouting and traveling to higher elevations. When we lived in Colorado, I loved fall and the abundance of golden leaves. Never a shortage!
      With a few online items purchased on cyber Monday, I am officially done with Christmas shopping ☹

  6. Nothing better than shopping with your daughter on Black Friday! For the first time in many years I ventured out on Black Friday with my daughter and granddaughter. The crowds weren’t terrible where we were, either. I’ve got a long way to go before my list is finished! Enjoy your holidays!

    • Three generations of gals out shopping together … how special! My shopping list this year is pretty short and I’m almost sad to say, “I’m done shopping”. Say it isn’t so 😭😆 I think this weekend we’ll need to be practical and our shopping will be at the Farmer’s Market in Scottsdale.

  7. Great ideas and a reminder to replace our contigos and I think I do need a new camera bag. I’ll check them out but let me know if you like the one you buy for yourself. Your new toy takes good sharp images and of course, the one holding it made it perfect!

    • Al’s new laptop is in the mail. I’m so glad I waited until cyber Monday to purchase and glad his laptop is still lingering long enough for the new one to get here 😀 Shopping online is definitely easier, but I still love the hustle and bustle of the hunt in a shopping mall!

  8. How lovely for you to be able to go shopping with your daughter. Yes, the holiday season is definitely looming. Did I pick up correctly that perhaps Black Friday has a special significance in the US? If so, that’s news to me in Oz. What on earth are those birds? Very strange looking. Good luck with the advertisement links. I hoe you manage to make enough to buy a bottle of wine to go with your Christmas dinner.

    • Black Friday is one of the busiest shopping days in the U.S. It’s the day after our Thanksgiving and thus a four-day weekend for a lot of folks. Many stores open as early as 5:00 a.m. Crazy! Then the Monday after is ‘cyber Monday’ for all kinds of online shopping. Consumerism at its finest!
      Those birds are Quail and this particular breed can be found in Arizona. I love watching them. We did have a wonderful four-day weekend filled with lots of activities ☺

      • I think the equivalent of your Black Friday shopping madness day must be Boxing Day here in Oz. People queue up from the early hours and when the shop doors open they actually run to to the department they want. It’s total chaos. It always makes the news….

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