A Christmas (Shopping) Story

Oh the joys of the season. Crowded stores playing crappy, overdone Christmas music. Shopping elbow to elbow with strangers while you sweat like a beast in your winter jacket. Getting to the aisle that houses the item you wanted and finding that they’re all sold out. You peruse the picked over shelves until your eyes glaze over and you go into a coma. Can you tell I hate Christmas shopping?


My worst nightmare!

Retail therapy doesn’t usually feel therapeutic when I attempt it during the holidays. But today. Ah, my friends. Today I got the all time shopper’s high.

I want to get my kids some sort of tablet this Christmas and have been reading all the website reviews of the different tablets that are good for kids and yada, yada, yada. I had it narrowed down to either the Leapfrog Leap Pad 2, or a Kindle Fire. Since I’ve got a budget for Christmas shopping, either of these gifts would put me at the top of the budget. And just as I was about to buy them each a Kindle, I see that Walmart (I know, I know, they’re horrible and I shouldn’t give them business) is having a Pre-Black Friday sale and that the Leap Pad 2 is 50% off the normal price. So, this Christmas shopping hater, this avoid-crowded-places-at-all-costs introvert, deigned to attend a holiday sale event. The sale started at 8 a.m. Friday morning. I dropped Caylie off at school and walked into Walmart at 8:07 a.m. And they were sold out of the Lap Pad 2s. A staff member tells me that they’re offering the same price online. I drive home, take my wallet into the office and log onto the website. Just as I’m clicking the “check-out” button, I get a message telling me that the item I want is currently out of stock. It wasn’t even 9 a.m.

Now I guess I’m still a Christmas-shopping-for-kids newbie because this is the first time I have wanted to get them a gift that was, apparently, the hottest gift of the season. I’ve been having flashbacks to the 80s when all I wanted for Christmas was a Cabbage Patch doll. People were being trampled in the stores trying to buy them and much to my self-centered 9 year-old’s dismay, I didn’t get a Cabbage Patch that year. My parents just couldn’t get one.

I suppose at this point I could just go buy the Kindles that I was originally intending to get. But the Kindles and the 2 sets of headphones I purchased so I don’t have to listen to video game music would be the only things I could get them for Christmas. The 50% off sale would let me get 2 for the price of one and give me almost $100 left over to get more presents. My female shopper’s logic leaves only one conclusion: I spend the next few days going to the 2 local stores in my area to see if any more Lead Pads have come in. I check the website every few hours to see if they are back in stock. I’m out of luck.

And then, cue the music, I force my husband to take me to Walmart this morning and lo and behold… there is one lone pink Leap Pad 2 on the shelf and I snatched it up just as another mother turned the corner with her shopping cart! Ha! Take that bitch! I got the last one! I feel like dancing. My husband witnesses first hand the shopper’s high he’s heard so much about. I’ve been in a good mood all day! I picked up a green one for Chase on Amazon.com where they were selling for $20 more than the Walmart sale price. So I still saved some money. And if I went over the budget just a teensy bit, Mike will just have to bite the bullet.

I may hate Christmas shopping, but I love watching my kids when they open those presents on Christmas morning.


Welcome to Boringville

I’ve been taking a trip to Boringville the last week or two. The weather has gotten colder and my daily activities have been reduced to scheduling doctor appointments around my daughter’s bus schedule.

On the good side, I started a new medication that has really helped with my anxiety. I was feeling like a bubbling cauldron of panic that would rise up and burn everyone around me at the slightest provocation. And all the provocation seems to come from one small 5 year old. So I am feeling calmer and hopefully my interactions with my child won’t be so eruptive.

On the bad side, if there is a bad side to being calm, I feel like I’ve become very boring. All I really want to do is get my errands run, keep up with my housework and read some books. Gives a gal a lot to talk about, doesn’t it? I have no knowledge of current pop culture as I don’t watch TV. I have no real knowledge of current events, because I don’t watch the news or read anything other than the local paper. I’ve simplified my life to the point that I can enjoy my daily life and my family. There’s nothing outside the realm of my family life that I worry about anymore, or really concern myself with. My simple life has made me feel calm and secure. Peaceful, if you will. But also pretty boring.

Was being depressed and anxious what gave me a personality? God, I hope not. But I do feel a little more bland. My inner drama queen has quieted. She made me dramatic and funny and gave me something to say. And she also made me worry and panic and feel generally miserable. So I’ll take the blandness and keep my seat on the train to Boringville. It’s nice to not have my panties in a twist about everything in life.

Tick Tock

ImageI have this thing about time. I don’t know why since my job doesn’t really have deadlines. I can make dinner whenever the heck I want and if the laundry sits in the dryer for a day or two before I take it out to fold it, no one is going to fire me. There’s no threat to my salary, security or position. Just my sanity, apparently.

Hi, my name is Tamara and I’m a procrastinator. And I also hate to be late. These things don’t belong in my brain together and yet, here I am. It’s causing me some anxiety and I keep telling myself to let it go. For whatever reason, I have a hard time letting go.

I officially hate getting a kid out the door in the morning. I’ve never enjoyed trying to get somewhere at a specific time since having children. (Okay, since I could tell time. Sheesh.) But trying to get a 5 year old to do four things – just four – before leaving for school is driving me out of my mind.


I stopped wearing a watch a few years ago because I kept looking at it and worrying about time. And now I spend each morning hustling my two kids out the door and into the car and I worry about the time until that moment when my daughter opens the door to the school and disappears inside. Let’s not even discuss the school bus schedule and how I think it’s make-believe.

Do you have an issue with time? Are you perpetually early everywhere you go? Late no matter what?