Tis the season to go broke…

One evening last week we were driving home from gymnastics lessons when it began to snow.  I got all excited, and my 4-year-old asked why I was happy about snow.

“I love snow!” I exclaimed.

“But my teacher says that snow makes mommies sad because it gets all over their cars,” she replied.

“Well, I don’t mind because it’s so pretty,” I told her.

She thought about that for a second.  “But,” she protested, “it’s not pink! Or sparkly!

I smothered my laughter and said, “C, things don’t have to be pink and sparkly to be pretty.”

Truly perplexed, she replied, “They don’t?”

Her obsession with all things pink and sparkly is further evidenced by the sneakers she picked out today when I had a momentary lapse of sanity and ended up with both my girls at the mall five days before Christmas.

I braved the mall because I’ve been wanting to take my daughter to try on jeans.  It used to be that I would shop, buy what I like, bring them home, and she would wear them.  ‘Nuff said.

But on the brink of her fifth birthday, she is becoming increasingly opinionated about what she wears and how her clothing fits, and every time I bring home a new pair of pants there is something wrong with them.  Which leads to an enormous blowout every morning when it is time to get dressed for school.

The blowout basically consists of my daughter writhing on the floor, pulling and hitching at her clothing and making all sorts of inhumane noises that are supposed to convey discontent and frustration, while I stand over her and tell her in no uncertain terms that she is wearing the ding-dang pants and she better get over herself and put a smile on her face because I am tired of being late to school.

This happens every. single. morning.  I always win, but not without a price.  The price being my sanity.  So I thought perhaps we could avoid the drama if I allowed her to pick out her own clothes.

Silly me.

The morning blowouts are superseded on the drama scale only by the performance she put on at the Gap this afternoon as I forced her to try on several pairs of jeans in hopes of finding a couple pairs that she would deem acceptably comfortable.

Of course this was AFTER we spent a half hour in the crowded food court scarfing down our Chick-Fil-A lunches standing up because there were no seats to be had, a half hour sitting on a bench in the playground area while my girls enjoyed chocolate ice cream cones, and another half hour in the Stride Rite store trying on sneakers.

So it’s no wonder she wasn’t feeling particularly cooperative by the time we made it to the Gap.  I did, however, leave with three pairs of jeans.


And while none of them seemed at the time to meet the high standards for fit and comfort that my daughter demands, perhaps there will be something in the lot that she will be willing to wear when it’s time to get ready for school in the morning.

I realize this is about as likely as peace in the Middle East, but I ask you.  Without hope, is life really worth living?

And besides, that’s what return policies are for.

As I mentioned, on our way to try on jeans we stopped at the shoe store.  I figured my 2-year-old might be outgrowing her shoes, and while we were there, I had them size my 5-year-old as well.  As it turns out, both girls needed new shoes.


Thank goodness they were having a sale, so we made it out of the store without losing our shirts.  But still.  New shoes were not in my master plan this month.

And did I mention that I parked outside of Sears and just so happened to walk past their Christmas department on the way into the mall?  And they were having a 40% off sale?  I have been wanting some gold ribbon for my formal tree, and I found exactly what I wanted so I grabbed it and made my way to the register, where I waited for fifteen minutes to make my purchase while my girls proceeded to poke and prod the seasonal blowup lawn ornaments on display and beg for every trinket in sight.

And somehow between the time I bought the ribbon and the time I got home, I misplaced the bag of ribbon.  I can’t find it anywhere, so I think I must have absentmindedly set it down somewhere during our shopping torture excursion.  At any rate, I do not have it, and my formal tree still looks rather nekkid.


Then this afternoon I stopped by the local butcher’s to pick up the rib roast I had ordered for Christmas dinner.  I guess it would have been a good idea to inquire beforehand about the cost of a piece of roast beast.  Because if I had inquired and been informed, I’m pretty sure I would be serving lasagna for Christmas dinner this year.

I’m glad the butcher was preoccupied with the cash register when he rang up my order and announced the amount I owed because had he been looking at me, he would have seen my jaw drop to my knees in horror and disbelief.  But he was blissfully oblivious to my consternation as I passed my Visa across the counter in a daze, imagining my husband’s face when he sees this charge on our bill.


Tis the season to go broke, evidently.

Tomorrow (today, if you are reading on Friday, which is probably when this will post) is the last day of school before the winter break, and after a preschool Christmas program and a 2nd grade holiday party I will have all three of my kids at home with me for well over a week.  So my blog posting might be a bit sporadic over the next few days.

So if I don’t get another chance to say it, Merry Christmas!  Happy Holidays!  Seasons Greetings!  And all that jazz.