Most kids in the area have another month of summer left and neither they, nor their parents want to think about fall or school. But the back to school sales are out already and the store displays are hard to miss. And the sales are so good right now. Waiting until late August means missing out on these prices ( because prices will be back up high soon.

I am someone who is always on the lookout for a quality deal. I say quality because it’s not always about simply saving a buck but getting a great item, the right one at a great price. I am constantly browsing summer clearance sales for the right swimsuit for my son to wear next summer – he’s seven months old (so I still get to pick his clothes). I’m not just looking for the cheapest suit but one that is made well, with good sun protection, easy to put on and take off, and is also adorable and fun.

In the same way, I’ve already started thinking about Christmas gifts. Mind you, I haven’t started buying anything yet. But I start thinking about what we’ll be budgeting out over the next few months and start mentally coming up with our who-to-buy-for-this-year list. Then as I shop and browse for other things, I start drafting out our what-to-buy list so I have time to come up with thoughtful gifts for each and every person. Usually by October, I have both the who and what lists compiled and if I ever stumble across the right item I buy it early and save it. I have to leave a document on the cloud that reminds me where I hid what gift for whom and another document for as how we’re doing with our Christmas budget and spending. This helps me keep thoughtful gifts within a reasonable price range as well as budget for Christmas over several months. I also find it more freeing and relaxing than doing all my shopping Christmas Eve.

I’m the same way, I keep a list of activities coming down the pipeline in my head so if I see a great deal on baby clothes I know I can pick up some and save them for the next baby shower I get invited to that is expecting a girl for example, or I am prepared with graduation gift I would have appreciated, etc.

So what do you think? When do you find the best deals? Are you like me, planning ahead to save for your family and friends events? Do you take it even further and buy Easter deals immediately after last Easter to save for the next year? Or are you a Christmas Eve or Amazon Prime 2-Day shipping sort of person?