It’s the most wonderful time of the year.
Unless, of course, your holiday shopping isn’t done yet.
The clock is ticking. As I write this, we’ve got 134 hours left until Christmas Day, and if you’re anything like me, you’re working and sleeping through at least 80 of them.
The last Saturday before the holiday has come and gone. The Sarasota area doesn’t qualify for things like free Amazon Prime same-day delivery or two-hour delivery on Christmas Eve.
That doesn’t leave a whole lot of room for tying up your holiday shopping.
The time for brainstorming and browsing the aisles is over. This is the final stretch, and every move must be strategic.
First things first. Identify your priorities. We all have people on our Christmas lists who we can get away with giving a bottle of wine, an Amazon.com gift card or a fruitcake.
But your own mother, fiance, best friend or children likely need a little more attention.
If you know what you’re shopping for and just haven’t gone out to get it, there are a number of retailers with extended hours this week.
- Kohl’s is open around the clock beginning at 7 a.m. Tuesday.
- All of the Sarasota Macy’s stores are keeping their doors open until 11:59 p.m. throughout this week and until 6 p.m. on Christmas Eve.
- Target locations will be open until midnight this week and, for the truly talented procrastinators, Target will welcome customers until 10 p.m. Christmas Eve.
- Best Buy will be open until 11 p.m. through Friday and until 6 p.m. on Saturday.
- Westfield Sarasota Square and the Mall at University Town Center are open until 10 p.m. Westfield Southgate is keeping its doors open until 9 p.m. All three malls will welcome shoppers until 6 p.m. Christmas Eve.
If fighting the crowds isn’t on your to-do list, there are a number of gifts that can be printed via your computer.
- concert tickets
- dance-lesson gift certificates
- spring-training tickets
- theme-park passes
- vacation packages
- magazine subscriptions
Gift-of-the-month clubs have a reputation for being a bit cliche, but they’re often more personal than a gift card. If you’ve got a grandmother with an affection for tea or a brother who’s into microbreweries, there are clubs for them.
Websites like amazingclubs.com can send the last person on your shopping list things throughout the year like:
- olive oil
- dog treats
And of course, if that last loved one you’re shopping for is the generous type, you can forgo the malls and niche-interest clubs altogether and make a donation in that person’s name. Sarasota is loaded with nonprofit organizations that help others, and one could argue that they need those dollars more than your cousin needs a membership to a pickle-of-the-month club. Some of Unravel’s favorites are:
- Cat Depot
- Girls Inc.
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Suncoast
- Library Foundation of Sarasota County
- Lighthouse of Manasota