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Yes always. Take advantage of all the toy sales during the year. I always buy clothes at the end of season a size up for the following year. You can grab nice brand clothes cheaply. Definitely worth it.
I use to when my kids were younger. For years I had a "present" box. And I always had birthday cards and wrapping paper on hand. Saved a lot of money and last minute running around. If I was out and about and saw a sale and something "interesting" the kids (or their friends, in case of a party to go to or an "emergency present) I would buy. I always had something in my "present" box that was sure to make someone happy!!!
I do. I just look around when I go shopping, There are often clearance items somewhere. Target were clearing out stationary items the other day. I bought cute glitter books and pens for $2 for my daughters friends who love to write and draw. Often my kids get given gifts that they will never use so we put them in a box in the study and when a birthday rolls round we go pick something from the box. I never spend more than $10 on gifts for school friends.
I only buy clothes on sale for my kids or as new baby gifts, as sizes can be hard to tell for some kids.
I'll buy trinket presents (santa sacks, kids friends presents) on sale or heavily reduced. But I only look at the toy sales if there's something in particular I need like a certain big lego set my kids want. Otherwise I find I'm too tempteyto buy more gifts than the kids really need.