The average American spends 42 hours preparing for the holidays . . . That’s over one full work week dedicated to shopping, wrapping and attending holiday functions. A very happy but stressful time of the year.

Those of us in retail not only have all of that to do for our own needs but we are the ones face to face with the consumers when they are in a hurry, can be demanding, expect miracles, shop at the last minute, expect it all to still be on sale (it was in October!), think you should have all the inventory advertised until you close on Christmas Eve, can gift wrap in one minute, can magically know the finger size of their wife and can snap your fingers and make that 16″ chain fit a 20″ neck. Read on for some suggestions to help you get thru the season...