Tag Archives: shopping

Hey! My Jeans Don’t Fit. All Over Again.

With all the yoga, herbal supplements, meditation and mostly gluten free eating I’ve been trying lately to manage this silly panic/anxiety affliction I’ve acquired, I have some good news.

I’ve lost some weight.

And not just some weight. I’ve lost about 17 pounds. So far. (I’m optimistically counting on more. Trust me. I could stand a few more.) 

Whoo-hoo! Go Me!

That’s the good news.

The bad news? My clothes don’t fit. Again.

“But this is one of my favorite pairs,” I cry. “I can’t get rid of these.”

“Fine,” my husband says, “Look like a homeboy hangin’ out in the prison yard.”

He has a point.

jeansdiet

You’d think losing a little weight would be a good thing, right? An excuse to go shopping. Update the old wardrobe. But no. It’s not.

First of all, I’m cheap. In a good way. But cheap, all the same. I’m on a roll, without eating the rolls.  I’m planning on going down at least another size. I can’t afford to re-do my entire wardrobe. But until then, I need some clothes that don’t slide down past my hips, revealing my Calvin Kleins. I enter the dressing room, armed with a half dozen pairs of jeans.

One pair is too tight.

One pair is too loose.

One pair is dragging on the ground or cutting me in the crotch or too loose around the thighs but fine everywhere else.

There is only one common denominator. Wait. Make that two common denominators.

1.) They are all the same size.

And…

2.) None of them are just right.

So I walked out of the store with nothing. Just my baggy ol’ pants that look like I borrowed them from my husband. Or my cellmate.

How could all the same size of the same style of clothing give such different results on the new, thinner me?

We are bombarded with print ads showing us how we should look. We compare ourselves to the other moms at the neighborhood pool. We criticize what we see in the mirror, no matter what size.

I was convinced if I went down a size (which I have) I’d be happier. I’d look so much better and I’d feel fantastic.

I am happy. I do look better. But I don’t feel fantastic.

I don’t know about you, but I need to feel good in my clothes. I want them to be comfortable and I’d like to think they are flattering. But those outfits are too far and few between. I may have lost the weight, but I haven’t lost my critical self. And it’s depressing to think that no matter what the size, I may never feel satisfied.

But all the criticizing in the world doesn’t make up for the fact that much of what is out there is just plain unpredictable and uncomfortable. I admit. I’m not much of a shopper. But is it too much to ask that a size X be a size X and fit like all the other size X’s out there?

Is it?

Apparently, it is.

Ah well. Just another excuse to go shopping again.

Anyone want to come with?

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3 Comments

Filed under How We Roll, Observations

Black Friday. Worth Every Penny. And Then Some.

I’ve never liked to shop. Ever.

Still don’t. So when my 17 yr. old daughter asked if we could shop on Black Friday I laughed. Out loud. When she told me she was serious, I eyed her suspiciously.

“Only if we go at 5am,” I said, confident that she would back down immediately. You see, I’m a morning person. She’s a night person. A very late night person. She sleeps ’till noon every chance she gets. I knew I was safe.

“Ok!” she said enthusiastically.

Huh? What the…? How did that happen? I then tried to weasel out of it.

“Seriously? You’ll get up at 4:30? I don’t think so. Besides, I don’t think the stores you’ll want to shop even open up that early.”

Remember? I don’t like to shop. So in my forty-something years I’ve never shopped on Black Friday. I’ve avoided it like the plague. I thought only large discount stores and appliance stores were open at that un-godly hour the day after Thanksgiving.

“No, I already checked,” she said, “The mall opens at 5am.”

Rats. I was stymied. I had no idea where to go from there to get out of it.

“Ok…….” I said, voice trailing. I still had 5 more days to figure out how to get out of it. Surely, something would come to me.

But Thanksgiving Day arrived and I still didn’t have a way out. And she was so excited. Sharing this story with my sister on the phone she chastised my lack of enthusiasm.

“You set that alarm for 4:30am and enjoy yourselves. You’re creating memories,” she said, “Just don’t forget your helmet and elbow pads.”

Yikes. That got me. Especially since my stomach sinks every time my daughter receives a letter from a college trying to recruit her. I’m trying to cherish every moment she wants to spend with me. What was my problem?

So on Friday morning, we woke up before the crack of dawn and set out. We drove past our local Wal-Mart at 5:15am. Every, and I mean EVERY parking spot was taken. People were parking on the grass, off the curb. I’ve never seen it so busy. What was I getting myself into?

We arrived at the mall by 5:30am. It was busy but not unbearable. We shopped. We laughed. We waited in lines. I had to go check out the deals at the Disney Store (of course) and she reluctantly tagged along. 

The line was about 10 people deep and she rolled her eyes. “This is just like waiting in line for the rides, ” she groaned. But when we went to Hollister (her favorite store) the line for the cash register winded, weaved and wove through the store. “This must be SOME roller coaster!” I said excitedly. She pretended not to know me.

We chatted on the way to other stores. We chatted over coffee. We chatted in lines. We chatted in the car on the way to lunch. We observed people and talked about that. She shared with me things that were going on with school and with her friends. We reminisced. Mostly light things but some heavy things came up, too. And when the heavy things surfaced it slipped into our conversation easy, calm. I was able to share things I’ve always wanted to say – things every parent should say. She shared her feelings with a little awkwardness. (She is a teenager, after all.)

It was an amazing day.

I remember hearing Dr. Phil impart his wisdom on teenagers once. He said (and I’m paraphrasing here) that if you want your kids to talk to you about the big things then you’d better listen to the little things. In theory, I wholeheartedly agreed. But that day, I was able to see it in motion.

I’ve always felt I was a pretty involved parent. But days like this remind me I can always do more. Listening to those little things – how many sisters we could tell were shopping together, who her friends were dating, the latest fashion must-haves, how awful school lunches were – turned into conversations and snippets of some really big things. (And since I’d like to preserve some of her privacy I’m just going to let you guess what those were.) I heard her thoughts. She heard mine. It was amazing conversation with a little shopping thrown in. We enjoyed ourselves so much we’ve decided to make it a yearly tradition.

I saved a good bit of money on Black Friday. I lost a little sleep. Looking back, it was a simple gesture that became grand. And I can’t believe I tried to get out of it. What a shame that would have been.

(This is a repeat post from my first year of blogging. But it’s a lesson I have cherished. As I’m about to approach our 4th Black Friday Extravaganza, I thought I’d send a shout out to all of you to get out there and start making memories with your daughters. And sons. In ways that are meaningful for you. For us, it involves shopping. Yes. I have been reformed.)

6 Comments

Filed under Holiday, Lessons Learned, Motherhood

Love It Or Hate It? (50 Cent Fans? This Post Isn’t What You Think It Is)

Love it or Hate it?

I’ll tell you. (My answers are in parenthesis)

Then, you tell me.

Ready?

Set.

Go!

1. Snow days when school gets cancelled and there isn’t any snow on the ground and the roads are clear? (Hate it!)

2. A real Christmas tree complete with dropping needles? (Love it!)

3. Asymmetrical haircuts? (Still hate it!)

4. House guests in your home for 20 straight days in a row? (It’s love/hate for me)

5. Shopping online? (Love it!)

6. Shopping at Whole Foods? (I love it! My wallet hates it!)

7. Tuna Noodle Casserole? (I loved it as a kid. As an adult, I’ve pulled a 180. Hate it!)

8. The Apprentice Season 10? (Loved it!)

9. Amazing Race – any season? (Love it!)

10. Reality shows on MTV?  (Hate it!)

11. College bowl games on December 31 and January 1? (Love it!)

12. Spreading out the football games from December 18 – January 10th? (Hate it!)

13. The mom who chewed out her NHL coaching son for using foul language? (Love it!)

14. Eggnog? (Hate it!)

15. Truman Capote’s boxed set of The Thanksgiving Visitor and A Christmas Memory? (Love it, love it, love it and I read it every year and never tire of it!)

16. Pixie haircuts? (Love it! Just wish I could pull it off.)

17. Creating a Facebook page for your baby? (Hate it!)

18. Trying to complete this post on a dinosaur of a computer with a slow internet hook-up? (Hate it!)

19. Being completely finished with Christmas shopping a week before the big day? (Love it!)

20. Having a blog that, not only provides a creative outlet, but has introduced me to some amazing people and some amazing writing? (Love it, love it, love it!!!)

What do you love and hate?

19 Comments

Filed under Completely Random

Dear Lady At Kohl’s

Dear Lady-at-Kohl’s-with-your-19-items-one-of-which-needed-a-price-check,

You can’t say you didn’t see me coming. We made eye contact. Just after I said to my boys, “Come on boys. Let’s get going.”

You see, they’re little boys. And they dawdle. And daydream. But we had to get going. This was an unscheduled stop in our on-the-way-home-from-school routine. #1son’s shoes ripped at the seams during school and needed to be replaced. We came in for a pair of shoes. We ended up with two pairs, one for each boy. They wanted to hold the boxes themselves. Apparently, walking and holding a box was slowing them down.

You had been browsing in the women’s section. When you heard me, our eyes locked. And then you looked at the registers and noticed there was no line. So you shoved your cart out into the aisle and elbowed (yes, elbowed) my son, my seven-year-old son, out of your way. And then you proceeded to race us to the cashier.

You won. With your nineteen items and my two. I glared at you, trying to stare a hole in the back of your head. Wishing evil things. Things I can’t share here because my readers think I am oh-so-kind. But I’m not. Not when an almost elderly woman, with a wedding band, who has surely had children, nearly mows down my child and pushes past me in order to beat us to the line.

So we waited behind you, quite patiently. And then it happened. Item number 12 needed a price check. “I’ll wait,” you said oh-so-sweetly. So we all waited. Me. My boys. And the 4 people now behind us.

Finally, another cashier opened. She said a few times, “I’ll take the next in line.” Which was me. But with 4 more people behind us, I knew someone else would jump ahead of me. But the lady insisted. And so did the lady directly behind me. So we, me and my boys, step out of line and who should appear? Another (insert expletive) jerk who was in more of a hurry than I was, apparently.

The kind, sweet soul who was behind us in the first line graciously called me over to my original spot. She shook her head and commiserated with me. You see, she noticed not only Mr. Jerk, but you, too. I said, “Some days are like this.” “But they shouldn’t be,” was her reply.

You left. Finally. And we paid for our measly two items. And walked out of the store. Me and my dawdling two boys. You were parked right next to me. You were preparing to drive away. But you saw us coming. Protectively, I put out my hands to stop my boys from walking. If your driving was anything like your shopping cart maneuvers, we were in trouble.

But you waved us ahead. I stood firm. You kept waving. Finally, I allowed us to cautiously, so very cautiously, step in front of your car. And safely pass in front of you to our own vehicle.

After all.

It was the least you could do.

(Ok. I feel better now.)

26 Comments

Filed under All In A Day's Work, Observations, People

Two Dudes And A Mom – A Very Grateful Mom

Yesterday was the first day back to school. The morning was typical – racing around trying to find shoes, coats, lunch boxes. We hopped into the car about 3 minutes later than our goal time. Not bad. It’s a 20 minute ride and #1son wanted to count speed limit signs on the way. There were a lot less than we anticipated, only finding 15. Sitting in carpool line, inching to the front, I see the teacher’s aide dressed like a polar bear. Oh. No.

Our high is only supposed to be around 30 today. We’re not used to this. We live in the south. All the other kids getting out of their cars are dressed like polar bears, too. My boys? Just their jackets. With a flimsy hood. Epic fail, Mom!

Racing home I pray the powers-that-be will think it too cold to let the kids go outside. I don’t want to be known as “THAT mom.” I pour through the coat closet searching for scarves, gloves and hats.

I find plenty of scarves.

I find plenty of gloves and mittens.

I even find four pairs of gloves that are brand, spanking new – never been used, found on clearance last season.

But no hats. Not a one. Nada. Zip. Zilch.

When I pick them up from school I ask, oh so casually, “So, did you play outside today?”

“No, the teacher said it was too cold,” they replied.

Thank you, God. I take the boys to Kohls immediately. I do not pass Go. I do not collect $200 – although that would have been nice but frankly, I don’t deserve it. We purchase the last two knit caps on the shelf. The very last two. And the stocking cap angels were smiling down on me today because each boy grabbed a cap and each boy loved it.

Two very happy dudes and one very grateful mom.

Success!

21 Comments

Filed under children, funny, parenting

Black Friday Is Worth Every Penny And Then Some

I grew up a bit of a tomboy. I’ve always lacked some very typical “girly” genes. Much to my daughter’s chagrin I’m not much into jewelry and lots of make-up. I don’t like to talk long on the phone. I’m soooo like a guy when it comes to talking (or not talking, as the case may be) about my feelings or arguing or even just communicating in a relationship. (I know, nothing to be proud of. I’m working on it.) I played softball but wanted to play baseball as a kid. I love camping out under the stars. I wore garter snakes around my wrists much to the delight of the boys in the neighborhood. And I’ve never liked to shop. Ever.

Still don’t. So when my 17 yr. old daughter asked if we could shop on Black Friday I laughed. Out loud. When she told me she was serious, I eyed her suspiciously.

“Only if we go at 5am,” I said, confident that she would back down immediately. You see, I’m a morning person. She’s a night person. A very late night person. She sleeps ’till noon every chance she gets. I knew I was safe.

“Ok!” she said enthusiastically.

Huh? What the…? How did that happen? I then tried to weasel out of it.

“Seriously? You’ll get up at 4:30? I don’t think so. Besides, I don’t think the stores you’ll want to shop even open up that early.”

Remember? I don’t like to shop. So in my forty-something years I’ve never shopped on Black Friday. I’ve avoided it like the plague. I thought only large discount stores and appliance stores were open at that un-godly hour the day after Thanksgiving. 

“No, I already checked,” she said, “The mall opens at 5am.”

Rats. I was stymied. I had no idea where to go from there to get out of it.

“Ok…….” I said, voice trailing. I still had 5 more days to figure out how to get out of it. Surely, something would come to me.

But Thanksgiving Day arrived and I still didn’t have a way out. And she was so excited. Sharing this story with my sister on the phone she chastised my lack of enthusiasm.

“You set that alarm for 4:30am and enjoy yourselves. You’re creating memories,” she said, “Just don’t forget your helmet and elbow pads.”

Yikes. That got me. Especially since my stomach sinks every time my daughter receives a letter from a college trying to recruit her. I’m trying to cherish every moment she wants to spend with me. What was my problem?

So on Friday morning, we woke up before the crack of dawn and set out. We drove past our local Wal-Mart at 5:15am. Every, and I mean EVERY parking spot was taken. People were parking on the grass, off the curb. I’ve never seen it so busy. What was I getting myself into?

We arrived at the mall by 5:30am. It was busy but not unbearable. We shopped. We laughed. We waited in lines. I had to go check out the deals at the Disney Store (of course) and she reluctantly tagged along. The line was about 10 people deep and she rolled her eyes. “This is just like waiting in line for the rides, ” she groaned. But when we went to Hollister (her favorite store) the line for the cash register winded, weaved and wove through the store. “This must be SOME roller coaster!” I said excitedly. She pretended not to know me.

We chatted on the way to other stores. We chatted over coffee. We chatted in lines. We chatted in the car on the way to lunch. We observed people and talked about that. She shared with me things that were going on with school and with her friends. We reminisced. Mostly light things but some heavy things came up, too. And when the heavy things surfaced it slipped into our conversation easy, calm. I was able to share things I’ve always wanted to say – things every parent should say. She shared with me her feelings with little awkwardness. (She is a teenager, after all.)

It was an amazing day.

I remember hearing Dr. Phil impart his wisdom on teenagers once. He said (and I’m paraphrasing here) that if you want your kids to talk to you about the big things then you’d better listen to the little things. In theory, I wholeheartedly agreed. But then, I was able to see it in motion.

I’ve always felt I was a pretty involved parent. But days like this remind me I can always do more. Listening to those little things – how many sisters we could tell were shopping together, who her friends were dating, the latest fashion must-haves, how awful school lunches were – turned into conversations and snippets of some really big things. (And since I’d like to preserve some of her privacy I’m just going to let you guess what those were.) I heard her thoughts. She heard mine. It was amazing conversation with a little shopping thrown in. We enjoyed ourselves so much we’ve decided to make it a yearly tradition.

I saved a good bit of money on Black Friday. I lost a little sleep. Looking back, it was a simple gesture that became grand. And I can’t believe I tried to get out of it. What a shame that would have been.

12 Comments

Filed under Lessons Learned, parenting