Moving Update

My husband and I went up this week to look at houses and find a furnished apartment for him to use temporarily. Of course, it was snowing something major (we’re not used to that down here in North Carolina!!). We stopped at some outlets in Maryland first to stock up on winter gear for the family… you know, important things like fleeces and snow boots. They don’t sell much of the down in NC! We met our realtor and spent about 3 hours on the road looking at houses before we found The One. I am still not trying to get my hopes up about this house, but damn girl it is hard!! We saw two houses that wouldn’t work at all and one that we liked but it was SUPER small on the main floor. I just imagined getting all of our furniture, toddler and two dogs in there and going CRAZY!! We only had 2 more houses to look at that were in our price range, location we wanted, and had the space we need. When we pulled up to The One I got butterflies in my stomach. I hadn’t seen it on my searches online because it was above our price range, but the realtor knew that they were about to drop the price. It’s bigger than we need but would give us ample space and it’s move in ready. I will write more about it and post pics when we know it’s ours. At this point we made our offer on Tuesday and they countered on Wednesday. The house is vacant (since October) and the couple’s relocation company currently owns it. So we are hoping they just want to unload their debt onto us! So we countered Wednesday and then they asked for our best and final number. Last we heard Wednesday was that it has to go to corporate to approve. So we shall see! We have our fingers crossed. Our realtor also got us in touch with a local business that had an open efficiency for my husband to rent until we can move into our new home. Hopefully he can pay just one month and then we’ll be moving in! We also had lunch in the cute downtown of Lewisburg (across from Bucknell University) and visited a small local toy store downtown for a small gift for Little One. My husband leaves on Tuesday to drive up and he starts work on Wednesday. So we have him home this weekend and then he’s gone until Christmas Eve. I am really sad but trying not to think of it. Typically I am a bit of a scrooge during the Holiday season (due to 10 years in retail) but it’s been better since we had Little One. This year it’s going to be difficult to be joyful as a single mother!

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Shopping on Thanksgiving

We are leaving in the morning for our house hunting trip, just in time to hit the snow in Pennsylvania! The fun never ends. I’ll be back Wednesday, but for now, some thoughts regarding Black Friday (or Black Thanksgiving).

I understand that people are in an uproar about stores opening early on Thanksgiving for shoppers. The main claim is that it’s taking time away from the employees’ time with their families. After 10 years in retail sales, I can tell you it does suck being away when your family is together doing fun holiday things. Or being limited to who you can visit/how long because you have to work all weekend long. But I think we’re missing the point. Thanksgiving is but one day a year. I argue that maybe we should be pissed about the other 364 days a year that these employees are away from their families for dinner and childrens’ bedtimes so their stores can be open until 9 or 10. I argue that maybe all of our stores should be closed on Sundays giving retail employees one day back a week with their families. Maybe stores should be open 10-6 all year long. Let’s be honest, do you really shop that often outside of those hours? Or is it just occasionally? What about the entire month of December when stores open super early and stay open super late, let’s talk about that. To me, unless we’re having a frank discussion about the times our stores are open 365 days a year, just talking about Thanksgiving doesn’t make a difference. I’ll see you Thanksgiving night in line at Target.

Gift Card, I Mean Cop Out

I hate gift cards. And I don’t mean for restaurants or hotels or the spa. Those are okay. I mean, let me give you a gift card in place of actually getting to know your likes and dislikes and finding a gift for you. Let me phone it in, buy an online gift card, never get up from the couch and there’s your present. I would rather have a homemade crochet dish rag than a $1,000 gift card to Nordstrom. I don’t know if you’ve ever read the 5 Love Languages but mine is giving and receiving gifts. But I don’t mean $1,000 Tiffany jewelry. $1,000 jewelry doesn’t mean a thing to me if there isn’t meaning behind it or thought put into it. I still have a $50 gift card to the Container Store (electronic even) from last Christmas. And I LOVE that store. It just seems like a bad joke to buy your loved one a gift card. Do you not have time to walk through the store and pick up something they like? It started as a guy thing now, but parents and grandparents get into it too. What do you all think about giving gift cards to your loved ones?

Stranger Danger

I have been thinking since my daughter was born about some of the proper public school teachings (sex ed, stranger danger, health and nutrition) but Rebecca has such eloquence and she often writes what is in my head so I wanted to share her post. It irks me when people cannot be civil to one another in a public space, let alone be friendly. When did people stop being friendly? My mom always talks the ear off of anyone she meets, anywhere. I long battled some sort of shyness and I shied away from social interactions with strangers. Even ten years in customer-facing retail couldn’t fix my aversion. It wasn’t until after I became a mom, especially a mom of a toddler, that I started conversing with strangers in public. Now I find myself carrying on conversations with people on the phone and in stores that I never met before. And you know what? It feels nice! Even better? My daughter asks to say hello to people we don’t know when we go out. And I let her! Then 9 times out of 10 that stranger is happy to speak with her. It feels good to be friendly!