The Frugal Café | Photo credit: Rebecca Anne, "Flora's Cup"</a> | Creative Commons License,
Photo credit: Rebecca Anne, "Flora's Cup" | Creative Commons License,

Frugal Café Philosophy
Save more.
Spend wisely.
Use resources responsibly.
Laugh often.
Kindle passion in life.
Give back.




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Naughty or Nice? Frugal Christmas Shoppers Need to Know Which Stores Are Still Banning the Mention of Christmas

Posted December 1, 2008

Whoa, boy, just when I thought that we, as a beleaguered nation of people in economic crisis, couldn't have more headaches this Christmas season, I'm again proved wrong. Remember the outcry a few years back when major retailers banned the mention of Christmas during the Christmas season? Renamed myriad Yuletide symbols to sell, such as "Holiday Trees" and "Holiday Wreaths"?

Hey, you Christians and Christmas-lovers with deep pockets, we want your money, we want your patronage, but we don't want to show respect for your most holy and beloved holidays for fear that a few angry atheists or anti-Christmas people will be offended. But please, please, please, spend your money with us during this joyous-and-profitable-but-not-to-be-named holiday season so we can avoid filing for bankruptcy.

Well, it's happening again (it actually never stopped, but seems louder this year), which is truly baffling, particularly since every retailer on God's green earth in the good old US of A is struggling, except for maybe Walmart and the dollar stores. You'd think that this misplaced political correctness, hypocrisy, and hubris would be over by now, but nope, it's not.

We all have drastically limited dollars to spend this year for Christmas, so we encourage you to please visit Liberty Counsel's retailer list and check out which stores are "naughty or nice," and make your decision as to which you will or will not do your frugal business with this Christmas. Ironic and not-so-very amusing is that many of those who are on the "naughty" side of the list are also going belly up like beached whales—some of these clowns are even writing up their employees for misconduct if they accidentally wish a customer "Merry Christmas." Boycott, baby, boycott!


Gift Card Warning for Christmas 2008

Posted November 24, 2008

Stores that are planning to close after Christmas are still selling gift cards through the holidays, even though many of those gift cards will be worthless January 1. Reportedly, this is indeed legal, as there is no law to prevent them from doing this. On the contrary, it is referred to as "Bankruptcy Planning."

News source information is spotty. When Circuit City filed for Chapter 11 a few weeks ago, it asked and received court permission to honor its gift cards. Circuit City continues to sell them. Consumer Reports advises against buying gift cards from a distressed retailer. "Just because they honor gift cards today, doesn’t mean they will honor them tomorrow," cautions assistant finance editor Anthony Giorgianni.

We've searched the Internet and watched network and local TV news stations—this information, as of this date, is not being reported much by any of the major news networks or news outlets. It is, however, showing up on many, many sites in the blogosphere.

This list is alphabetized for your convenience and is a compilation of many blogs. We will update this as often as possible when new information is available.

Below is a partial list of stores that you need to be cautious about this Christmas (2008). Not all are going out of business, but since different stores will be closed nationwide, this could affect if you'd be able, or the person you gave the gift card to as a Christmas gift, to use the card after the New Year. Some of these closures are warranted: cutting loose the deadwood locations. Other closures, though, are indicative of rocky times ahead. We're not being alarmists at the Frugal Café, but want you, our valued readers, to have a better idea of how to proceed in the months ahead with store gift card purchases.

Be wise... be frugal.