Tis the season to start shopping

I know many of you loathe November with the fire of a thousand suns, and for those of you I offer you a big hug and also the not-really-news that it is already half over! It feels like it was just Halloween, just a day or two ago, and here we are, less than six weeks away from Christmas.

I officially finished my Christmas shopping yesterday; it’s the one task I like to accomplish early so as to not worry about the mall, or, more often, shipping. I will confess that the vast majority of my shopping is done online, because really, what could be easier? Click click click, and boxes show up on my doorstep. However, sometimes a trip to the mall is necessary, which is what I did last week, to pick up a few special gifts. It’s still early enough in the season that no one was road raging in the parking lot and the customer service people were not yet in the depths of despair; on that note, don’t forget to be nice to the people working customer service. It’s a hell of a job this time of year.

Digression: I have become obsessed – OBSESSED – with PC Points, to the point where I get really excited every week to view my new offers. Sometimes they are great – 200 points per dollar spent on cauliflower, 400 points for red wine vinegar – but often they are nothing I would ever buy, which is more disappointing to me than it probably should be. However, I am avidly collecting my points and, like my Type A personality might indicate, I try to be super-efficient and collect as many as possible while not going off my actual grocery list. It’s like a linear algebra equation!

Anyway, I was involved in a conversation regarding such things, along with in-store savings, and a woman I don’t really know said When a cashier says “you saved $25 today!” I say “No, I spent $200, YOU’RE WELCOME.” This person has clearly never worked customer service: a) cashiers usually have a script that they need to follow, in order to keep their jobs, and b) wow, why would you be so rude? I invite such people to spend one day working customer service; it’s no picnic. Too long, didn’t read, BE NICE, PEOPLE.

The past two weeks have felt weird and a bit hazy; I think it’s due to the time change and our sudden plunge into darkness. No, I know it’s theoretically the same amount of daylight, minus the several minutes of daylight we lose each day at this dark time of year, just shifted, but when the sun sets before five o’clock and it’s pitch black when I’m making dinner and I know there are still five weeks left before things start to get lighter, a little bit, well, it’s disconcerting.The last few days have been foggy and ice-crystally and the sky was the same greyish-white as the ground, and it was a bit gloomy. The hoar frost was pretty but that was the only visually redeeming quality.

Bringing a little bit of joy to the gloomy day was my afternoon spent finishing my shopping yesterday. No, I didn’t go to the mall, I visited my good friend who is an artisan and she makes the most beautiful malas and bracelets you have ever seen. She custom made a bracelet for someone on my Christmas list and I was just blown away by the craftsmanship and beauty of it, and all of her wares.

Gorgeous, right? She also has something called The Goddess Collection, and you can find her on Etsy right here. She’s a dear friend of mine and I’d love it if you’d check it out or let anyone who might be interested know about it.

The new Book Fair Lady at the elementary school (HI HAYDEE) had sent me a message about the fair going on right now; the first one without me since 2009! I was happy to hear that she answered “The posters are five dollars” several thousand times; the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Today was Parent-Teacher Conferences, and there was a book fair being held at the same time! The boys perused the offerings after the conferences and I spied this:

EACH. ONLY $5.00 EACH! We had this exact same sign in the elementary school and yet it did nothing to quell the steady stream of questions regarding the monetary value of each poster. However, once one gets to junior high, the comprehension skills must be more advanced; I did not hear any such queries during my short time at the fair.


  1. You know, some day they are going to raise the price of those posters. They’ve been $5 a long time.

  2. I am so super impressed that you are already done with your shopping. Mine ALL still lies before me, super daunting. Especially since I have no idea what to get for 60% of my recipients. SIGH.

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