The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year, Sears Style

This weekend was a whirlwind of Christmas cheer activities – there are only FOUR WEEKS until Christmas, people! We actually put the tree up even though it seems early, even for me. This coming weekend is massively busy, and I cannot and will not go into December without the tree, and so this weekend was it, even though it’s five days until we can bust open the Advent calendars. Speaking of Advent calendars, a friend of mine put together craft beer calendars for charity, and I bought one for my husband. I will tell you this: it is an incredibly great idea. She did this last year and sold thirty calendars; this year she made 96, all proceeds to purchase socks and underwear for the Drop-In Centre. She raised over $4700 doing this; that is a LOT of socks and underwear. Bravo, Lyndsey! And sign me up for next year.

So the tree is up, and so are the outdoor decorations. It was a mild weekend, and Calgarians know that you just cannot let a chance like that go by. Seize the day; next weekend will be minus 20, and putting up Christmas lights in those temperatures is not pleasant. My husband not only had a theme for the front yard, but he also decorated our detached garage with coloured lights, and set up the light-up moose in the back yard. I can look out the window while I’m in the kitchen, and feel festive and happy. It’s so dark here now; the sun sets at 4:30 and it’s completely dark by 5:00. As I write this, it is 10:30 am and the house is completely dark. The sky is grey, the snow is grey, it would be pretty damn depressing if I didn’t have glittering light-up icicles on the house to go with the light-up deer, hippo, penguins, and three trees. Our house is glowing, not unlike the Griswold’s, but happily with less power usage.


Do I look happy?


I’m excited about my new ornament!

Since the tree is up and the house smells like peppermint-chocolate from my incessant baking, it’s time for everyone’s favourite gift list: NICOLE’S FAVOURITE THINGS FROM THE SEARS WISH BOOK. I picked up the Wish Book back in late August but I’ve held out on sharing because people tend to think poorly of one’s mental state when one talks about Christmas in late August. But oh, the treasures that are in the Sears Wish Book! As we all know, Sears Canada is having financial trouble – mostly because the clientele that frequents the actual store tends to be elderly and the elderly have a bad habit of, um, passing on – but the day the Wish Book becomes unavailable is going to be a sad, sad day, people.

I’m already a little sad because I scoured the catalogue and there is not one Snoopy Sno-Cone Maker. I looked, and looked, and nothing. There’s a whole page of old-timey toys, though.

 sears 001

Didn’t everyone have that rotary phone and radio? My husband had the radio; it is at my in-laws’ and it still works. That is some quality workmanship. The rotary phone feels like quite the collector’s piece. Again, my in-laws’ have a (non-working) rotary phone at their place and it was a little fascinating for my kids. That’s how you dialed the phone? How did you text? Slinkys, though. Those were awful toys. They were always getting tangled and twisted and even if you could get them to go down the stairs, they would only go down a few steps before stopping. Disappointment.


Ever since the word came out that Hello Kitty is not an actual kitty, I feel weird when I see this kind of merchandise. It’s like when I watched Stand By Me in my youth – hoo boy, did I have a thing for Kiefer Sutherland and his bad boy kitch – and there was discussion around Goofy. If he is not a dog, what the hell is he?


More Hello Not-Kitty. In “Everything Old Is New Again” news, the Ninja Turtles? I was actually shocked – SHOCKED, I SAY – to hear my kids talk about the Ninja Turtles, and refer to them as Mike, Donny, Ralph, and Leo. What? Are the actual famous-artist names too difficult for today’s youth? I’m disappointed. But I’m not disappointed in the availability of unicorn and rainbow dog glowing plush night lights. Remember Glo-Worms? This is like a fabulous rainbows-and-unicorns improvement to the poor, lowly worm. Although I’m sure the worm world is saddened by this. We finally get high status as a stuffed glowing lovey, only to be knocked down by puppies and unicorns AGAIN? Goddammit. Back to getting stepped on after rain storms.


I SO BADLY wanted to get an Elvis shirt and pajama bottoms, but my husband threatened to never have sex with me again if I wore one. Is a silk-screen picture of Elvis really such a boner-killer? Sadly, the women’s t-shirts only feature young Elvis, not the glammed-up, sparkly, be-caped-and-huge-glasses Elvis that I love. This is why you’re going broke, Sears. If I had the chance to buy a t-shirt with 1973 Aloha From Hawaii Elvis, I would in a heartbeat. You’re out of touch, Sears. I’m out of time.

Of course, if I did I would be a poor, sex-crazed woman. The last time we were in Hawaii I saw a t-shirt that said Elvis Has Not Left The Island and I wanted it SO BADLY, but it was unavailable in my size and also, my husband presented the same boner-killing argument.


He didn’t say anything about a leg lamp shirt, though…


Here’s a PSA: do not buy these mugs. I received one in this same style (although not with Mickey Mouse on it) and it constantly leaked. Unless you enjoy having hot coffee scalding your chin and chest, don’t buy one. Those little mediation fountains are pretty fun, though, and only $9.99 – what a steal! It seems strange that they are on the same page with potty seats and a beer belt, but I guess they are all “Gifts for Under $10”. Oh, wait! Those aren’t potty seats, they are neck pillows. Still.

To file under creepy things:


These sweatshirts that zip over faces, I HATE THESE THINGS. I’ve seen kids with ninja-style ones and they creep me out. I must see faces. Even creepier is a storm-trooper/ Sith hoodie. Also creepy?


Those freaky-ass dolls that are dressed up as animals. I don’t know what it is, exactly, that is creepy about it. Is it the dead eyes? The “I’m going to eat you in your sleep” expressions on their faces? If you cannot read the description, here it is:

Little Mommy Cutie Animal Dolls: part stuff animal and part baby doll with soft furry body and a matching hood with fun-to-hold ears – colourful pacifier attached by a ribbon.

I need offer no further comment, except to say that it comes in three varieties: Cutie Bunny, Cutie Bear, and Cutie Lamb.


I know I said this last year, but if you are considering buying someone an electronic ear wax remover for Christmas, DON’T. Talk about boner-killers. Baby, I love you. Here’s an ear wax remover. I cannot believe that the Sears catalogue no longer has Snoopy Sno-Cone Makers but it offers an electronic ear wax remover as a gift idea. Also probably not a great gift idea: the Wraptastic Kitchen Wrap Dispenser. There are very few people in the world that would actually be glad to receive this under the Christmas tree.


I know it’s supposed to be cute, but You Crawl I Ball onesies seem very inappropriate to me. These mugs, though! What could be cutesier than having “Mr. Right” and “Mrs. Always Right” mugs with which to sip morning coffee with your beloved? It’s like the mug equivalent of I’m With Stupid, but nicer. It reminded me of these t-shirts I saw in Maui:


I STILL laugh when I think of them. That is some funny merchandising.

Speaking of sexytimes and boner-killers, what do we think of Santa and Mrs. Claus costumes?


 The expression on the elf-dog’s face is PRICELESS. Poor thing’s probably going to be a target at the off-leash.



  1. I heard that Hello Kitty thing and I am not even bothered because YES SHE IS SO A CAT. Look at her! She is a cat! I suspect translation issues, like what they MEAN is that they’re using cats to teach children about real human issues—like in the Hello Kitty books and TV show, where she is learning about caring and sharing and so forth. She’s meant to REPRESENT a little girl. But she IS a cat.

    And if they REALLY ARE trying to say she’s not a cat, they’re just wrong. WRONG. They could say she’s a giraffe, but we wouldn’t have to take their word for it when we can see she’s a cat.

  2. Is her name Hello Kitty or is it like Doctor Who? I need to know!

  3. Electric. Ear wax. Remover. Like….WHAT?

    Ha, yes, I remember — “what the hell kind of animal IS Goofy?” He’s a dog! He’s a cow! He’s a dog in a relationship with a cow! Ew! Moo!

    The early darkness is sapping my will to live. Need Christmas lights ASAP.

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