Shoppers sill watching their pennies this Christmas

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - By Doug Walker – bio | email

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - At the Family Dollar store in Pascagoula, Christina Poole and her family are shopping for Christmas with one thing in mind: saving money.

"We're doing good, just doing a little bit of Christmas shopping here where the sales are."

The general rule of thumb this Christmas buying season is that people are willing to spend money, according to coast retailers, just not a whole lot of it. That's why at Family Dollar, some of the more popular gifts are a $5 turbo blaster for boys and a nice $5 doll for girls.

"They're almost like pinching pennies and trying to get by and trying to make Christmas for themselves," Store Manager Ann Wilkins said.

Also trying to get by is Sonya Hyde.  She is trying to weave herself a better holiday season by selling her wares along Highway 90.

"I lost my job, but thank goodness my husband still has his job. So this just gives us extra money for Christmas," Hyde explained. "If we didn't have this, we wouldn't be having a Christmas."

Fortunately for Sonya, people were snatching up her hats and scarves on this chilly day.

Up the road, members of the Ocean Springs band are selling Christmas trees to raise money for a trip.  Business was brisk Sunday, but that's not always the case.

"They've been okay. They've been pretty down a little bit," band member Christian Dasher said.  "A lot of people asking about the prices and no one wants to spend so much money on the Christmas trees, but it's been pretty good though.

And most businesses are hoping that is stays pretty good, despite concerns about the future of the economy.

Coast retailers are still looking forward to one last rush of customers before Christmas.  Typically, the last weekend before the holiday is the biggest shopping weekend of the year.

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.