5 Helpful Hints for Holiday Tech Shopping

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

If your family is like mine there are lots of tech items on the Christmas list.  My husband wants a 42 inch tv, I want a new desktop computer, my teens want cell phones and my son wants a DSi.  Oh, and they all want an Kinect for our X-box.  Needless to say we aren’t going to get all of that, but some tech items are bound to end up under our tree.  Twitter Moms and Staples are collecting tips for technology shopping this year, and here are my 5 top tips:

  • Read Reviews – It is important to find out what is good before you spend any money.  Sure, products look great in the ads, but the reality might be different.  After reading reviews of the Kinect I’ve decided our family can wait.  The reviews are good, but there isn’t much software and it is expensive.  So in 6 months or a year we might get one, but we will wait until there is more software available.  My favorite review site is cnet.com.  They are unbiased and give excellent detail in their reviews.
  • Shop Around – You can’t assume that the best deals will be available on Black Friday or Cyber Monday.  Sometimes as you get closer to Christmas the prices go down.  So it pays to research early, and find out what a good price is.  Then if you see a discount you know you are really getting a deal.  I like the site slickdeals.net for finding the best price.  You can even set up deal alerts, so the site will email you if something you are looking for goes on sale.  This is an easy way to find out about the deals early.
  • Check the Item in Person – We do lots of our buying online, but we wouldn’t buy a big ticket tech item without seeing it in a store.  My husband and I went out shopping on Black Friday not to buy, but to see the different tvs we were considering.  We also checked out the Kinect, and got to try the driving game for ourselves at the store.  Seeing something in person can help you make the correct choice.
  • Don’t be too Picky – Sometimes the exact brand doesn’t matter.  For something like a tv does it really matter if it is Sharp or LG or Samsung?  If you are willing to go for a less expensive brand you can save money, as long you have checked the reviews and made sure the quality is acceptable.  You pay a premium for brand names like Apple, so if you don’t care about that you can save money.
  • Check the Return Policy – Many tech items have restocking fees if they are returned, especially computers.  These fees can be expensive, and I’ve seen them as high as 20%.  You need to know this before you buy, so you don’t get an unpleasant surprise if you picked the wrong item.  If one store has a restocking fee shop around, since it can be worth it to pay a little more for the chance to return it.

I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Staples blogging program, making me eligible for a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Doggie Love


Great Giveaways Nov 30- Dec 2nd

Tues Nov 30

Wed Dec 1

Thu Dec 2

My Holiday Wish List

Monday, November 29, 2010

Mama’s Holiday Wish List Meme

TodaysMama and GameStop  are giving away a sleighful of gifts this holiday season and to enter I’m sharing this meme with you.

1. What is your holiday wish for your family? My holiday wish is that everyone be healthy and together.

2. What is your Christmas morning tradition? We get up, let the kids open their stockings, and then eat breakfast before we open any more gifts.

3. If you could ask Santa for one, completely decadent wish for yourself, what would it be? A new car!

4. How do you make the holidays special without spending any money? We spend time together playing games, and do lots of Christmas crafts. 

5. What games did you play with your family growing up? Growing up poker and Monopoly were about the only games we played.

6. What holiday tradition have you carried on from your own childhood? Having an advent wreath and lighting it daily.

7. Where would you go for a Christmas-away-from-home trip? I like to stay home for Christmas, but if I had to go somewhere I’d pick Hawaii.  I’d like a warm Christmas for a change.

8. Check out GameStop and tell us, what are the three top items on your GameStop Wish List this year? We already have an Xbox 360, so the Kinect has to top our list.  I’d also love a Nintendo DSi XL and DJ Hero 2 Turntable Bundle for the Xbox 360.

So there is my holiday wishlist, and I can’t wait to see what Santa brings.

Rayovac Mom Rocks the Holidays Contest

Sunday, November 28, 2010


I love to enter contests, and this time of year there are so many it is hard to keep track.  But this one from Rayovac looks good to me.

Rayovac has launched an exciting sweepstakes where 3 Lucky winners will win $1,000 cash from Rayovac. In addition, 20 First Place Prize winners will receive a Rayovac Jam kit including a Paper Jamz guitar, drum, amp and guitar strap as well as 2 packs of Rayovac Alkaline AAA 24 packs (prize package valued at $90).

To enter this giveaway:

1. You must “Like” Rayovac on Facebook: Facebook.com/Rayovac
2. Log on to Rayovac.com, complete the entry form and at their option, tell Rayovac in 120 words or less how you (or your mom) rocks the holidays.

In support of this contest a number of blogs are also holding giveaways!  You can enter to win a prize package that includes a $50 Visa Gift Card, Paper Jamz Guitar and a pack of Rayovac Alkaline AAA 24 pack batteries.  These great blogs are offering this giveaway:

 DISCLOSURE: Followers who promote the Rayovac Mom Rocks the Holidays Sweepstakes may receive gifts from Rayovac.

Thanksgiving Food






                                                                   Collard Greens




                                                                  Mashed Potatoes






                                                            Cranberry Sauce

Great Giveaways Nov 26 – Nov 29

Friday, November 26, 2010

Fri Nov 26

Sat. Nov 27

Sun Nov 28

Mon Nov 29

Week of Nov 19 – Nov 25

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Fri Nov 19

Sat. Nov 20

Sun Nov 21

Mon Nov 22

Tues Nov 23

Wed Nov 24

Thu Nov 25

Week of Nov 12 - 18

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fri Nov 12

Sat. Nov 13

Sun Nov 14

Mon Nov 15

Tues Nov 16

Wed Nov 17

Thu Nov 18

Week of Nov 5 - 11

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Fri Nov 5

Sat. Nov 6

Sun Nov 7

Mon Nov 8

Tues Nov 9

Wed Nov 10

Thu Nov 11

Contests 11/2

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Contests 11/1

Tuesday, November 2, 2010