Holiday 2008


Unprecedented markdowns? Let me start…

Monday, December 8th, 2008

Every day it’s a new sale with discounts lower than I’ve seen before. Today through Wednesday Dec. 10, it’s Chocolate Celeste (2506 University Av. W., St. Paul, 651-644-3823, www.chocolatceleste.com). The high-end chocolatier is taking 50 percent off the 100 boxes of the Grand 16 piece truffle set (regularly $68). It’s a great hostess gift or you can get tiny boxes and give single truffles as gifts too. The chocolate is exceptional.

What other unprecedented markdowns have you seen recently that made you excited but just a bit nervous too?   

Not too early for Christmas lights

Monday, October 13th, 2008

Now is the time to get the best selection of LED Christmas lights. OK, maybe I should be dipped in egg nog and thrown against a hornet’s nest for suggesting anything holiday related before Halloween.

But in year’s past, the LEDs have been out of stock long by early December. if this is the year you want to switch to holiday lights that use a lot less energy, you’ll have to shop early for LEDs before they’re gone. LED lights use about 65 percent less energy than conventional Christmas lights that burn hotter.

 One improvement made this year is that the warm LED are being sold. In previous years, the white lights had a bluish blue. That color is still available, but now warm white lights are also available. Costco is selling 100 warm mini LED lights for $15. If you like the larger C-9 lights, Costco’s price is $14.49 for 50.

Other good spots to find LEDs are Fleet Farm, Menards and Target. In the past few years, everyone except Target has been sold out of the LEDs long before Christmas.

LED lights are more expensive than conventional. If you’re concerned about longevity, buy them at Costco and attach your receipt to the package. Only Costco’s return policy lasts until next Christmas.