I love the hustle and bustle of the week before Christmas. Now is the time to take inventory of what you have for stockings stuffers. In our house we go all out with filling each other's stockings. It has become a game throughout the years to see how clever we can be with the gifts.

If you are filling stockings for young children, items like Matchbox cars, Polly Pocket dolls, action figures, Beanie Babies and trading cards make fun and inexpensive presents.

You could start the tradition of picking out a special Christmas ornament for each family member. Choose an ornament that reflects each personís hobbies, interests or sports team.

For school-age children, fill their stockings with art and school supplies they will need for the winter session. Pens, pencils, markers, highlighters, index cards and other similar items are all practical and inexpensive.

Teenage girls and women appreciate the gift of their favorite makeup, nail polish and cosmetic brushes.

Individual packages of coffee, tea and hot cocoa also make great stocking stuffers. Gum, candy and mints are a must in the stocking. Buy treat bags and fill them up to place in the stocking. Socks are a practical gift for the stocking. They are easy to wrap and stuff into the stocking.

Air fresheners for the car are inexpensive; they are small and fit neatly into a stocking. Jewelry like tie tacks, earrings, bracelets, rings and necklaces make great gift ideas.

Fill someoneís stocking with tools and gadgets they will need around the house. For the cook, find fun kitchen utensils. Check out the selection in the dollar stores.

New toothbrushes, dental floss and razors are always needed. A new fragrance or shower gel is fun to receive in the stocking.

For the sewer in the family, consider sewing needles, thread and scissors. Knitting needles and crochet hooks are perfect to tuck in a stocking, as well.

Gift cards are one of the most versatile and appreciated gifts for young and old. Find gift cards for just about everything, from coffee shops to department stores, at most grocery and discount stores. Try to avoid cards whose value depreciates over time, though.

Still no clue what to get? Give a Visa or American Express gift card. They are accepted everywhere so it takes the guesswork out of it.

For now happy shopping!

Laurie Dixon, TheBAG Lady