This is Day 1 of the 30 Days of Giving: Making Christmas Meaningful campaign, which is designed to bring the community creative and practical ways to cheerfully give this holiday season through gifts, relationships and charity. Come visit the 30 Days of Giving Advent Calendar each day in our countdown to Christmas for intriguing and original ways to help you to experience and spread the spirit of joyful giving that God intended throughout the holiday season.

Over the years, the day after Thanksgiving — a.k.a. Black Friday — has become a staple of America’s pop culture … recognized as the biggest shopping frenzy day of the year. Retailers advertise insane bargains and shoppers line up in the wee hours of the morning to ensure they’ll get in on the deals.

It seems ironic that Black Friday comes on the very next day after a holiday where people offer thanks for what they have. If you plan to join the shopping stampede, these 10 websites will help you make sure you’re armed with the most accurate information on where to find the best deals:

As you might guess by the URL, this website is the spot to find Black Friday ads for plenty of popular retailers. You’ll find information from stores like Best Buy, Toys R Us, Walmart, Stein Mart, Radio Shack and more. The site also lets you sign up for alerts that it delivers right to your email.

This is another website dedicated to Black Friday deals that covers the major retailers. It has scans of leaked Black Friday ads, and it also provides buying guides to let you find the cheapest prices in the categories in which you’re most interested.

No, this site doesn’t have any relationship to the restaurant. It’s a simple, straightforward guide to Black Friday bargains. It also includes a rolling notification of the newest deals.

This is the Black Friday section of the bargain hunting website. It bills itself by the lofty title of “The Official Black Friday Deals Website.” While it doesn’t specify what that title means, it’s definitely a useful website. It has all the usual content, like ads and store data, but it differentiates itself with its useful charts. If you’re a visual person, you’ll like this method of deal comparison.

This website also claims a title, billing itself as the “Official Black Friday 2013 Site.” The website isn’t pretty, but you’ll find useful information on major retailers, ads, and merchandise categories in the long lists of links. bills itself as a website where “every day is Black Friday,” but that doesn’t stop it from devoting an entire section to the annual shopping blowout. The interesting spin at this site is a deal predictor. Not only do you get specific information like ad scans, but you also get a heads-up on the most likely deals that may be announced in the future. is a popular place to visit for deals throughout the year. The bargain hunters on its forums always have the latest information on sales and steals. The site has a dedicated Black Friday page. Better yet, it offers an app that lets you carry the latest deal information with you via your iPhone, iPad or Android device. is the well-known year-’round shopping behemoth, and this year it’s going all out for Black Friday.

Last year, the site offered a wide array of DVDs and Blu-ray movies at drastic discounts, with some going for as little as one dollar. It also offered a 32 inch LCD HDTV for less than $100. The site is well known for undercutting competitor’s prices, so expect better deals than what you’re likely to find at stores like Walmart or Best Buy. Best of all, you don’t have to stand in lines. Just order from your keyboard.

Twitter and Facebook

If you’re into social media, follow your favorite stores on Twitter and “like” their official pages on Facebook. More and more retailers are tweeting out special deals to their followers or sending out sales information and coupons via Facebook. Watch tweets and postings for coupons and last minute bargains as Black Friday approaches.

How do you know if a Black Friday deal is really worthwhile? Sure, it sounds good when it’s in a Black Friday ad, but in reality it might not be that far off from a store’s regular price. Use to check market prices and compare them to store ads to ensure you’re really getting the best deals. If you’re going to wait in line overnight for your favorite store to open, you want it to be worth your while.

As you prepare for Black Friday, don’t forget what the day before it was all about. Ephesians 5:20 instructs us that giving thanks always concerning all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to God, even the Father is very important. It’s fine to want to save money when you buy new things, but don’t let it be at the expense of forgetting your gratitude for what you have already.

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