Way back in 1997, Ron and I took a weeklong driving vacation to New England and I still look back on that vacation as one of the best we ever took. The stars seemed to be aligned such that the whole trip was perfect, and besides it was about 100 degrees when we left Virginia and about 75 in Massachusetts. It was one of those before-kids times when it actually worked to take a road trip with no planned stops, just a vague idea of where we wanted to end the day. But if you asked Ron, he would probably say that I have such fond recollections of this trip because of the outlet shopping we did in Maine. Freeport, Maine is not only a picturesque coastal town, it is home to some truly awesome shopping, including the home of L.L. Bean. At the time(remember that this is 1997, and please be forgiving)I was a huge fan of Laura Ashley clothing and I found huge stacks wonderful items at the Laura Ashley outlet almost for free. When I came out with a giant bag of treasure that I had paid about $30 total for, Ron laughed and said that I was flushed with discount fever. I couldn't argue with that, because I was pretty darn excited. Who doesn't get feverish about saving big bucks on stuff that you probably would've bought anyway?
Once again my background information is probably excessive, but I felt that flush of bargain shopping again today. I had asked Thomas to mail home his Christmas list and received it in the mail before he came home on Friday. This is the child who usually has a terrible time coming up with three or four items for Santa. It's not that he doesn't want anything; rather he expects us to know him so well that we can read his mind. Either that or he's too lazy to look up the proper name of the video games he wants, but this year he had about $1000 worth of stuff on his list. Ironic given that we had already given both children the lecture about the economy, cutting back this year, blah blah blah.
Anyway, seeing Thomas' list inspired Annamarie to make one of her own. When she pointed out that she didn't know how to spell most of the things on her list I told her to cut out pictures of items from the many catalogs that she has been saving and glue them onto a piece of paper. She might as well have just handed me the Limited Too catalog. The sheet that she handed me was covered on both sides with photos of sweaters, purses, Webkinz, scarves and jewelry. If it wouldn't wake her up, I would go into her room right now and take a photo of the racks we hung up tonight to hold her purses, scarves and jewelry. I don't think she could squeeze in another item on those racks. But as I have taught her to say recently, "Bygones."
I went to the Limited Too website just to see how many thousands of dollars this is going to cost us, and to make a long story short (too late) I lucked into a double coupon situation that ought to make my newly penny-pinching husband want to be my best friend forever. After narrowing down her list a good bit, I was able to order $180 worth of pink sparkly crap for less than $70 plus shipping.
I am understandably flushed and trying very very hard not to reward myself by spending the $110 I saved on scrapping stuff. I do not want to upset my new BFF.
Unrelated to any of the above, we took the kids to see a university production of the musical Oklahoma! last night. Ron and I both love the theater and have tried to cultivate a similar love in our children. I think we have mostly succeeded in Thomas' case, but unless there is tap dancing and sparkly costumes Annamarie has a hard time following along. She enjoys herself as long as there are snacks at intermission, and because she just generally loves being out and about. It's not a review that you will read in Variety, but as we were leaving the theater Annamarie exclaimed, "Mommy, I was not too bored!" For what it's worth, I wasn't bored either --- I thought it was great for a local production.
(When I think about it, I compose my posts using Dragon Naturally Speaking and a microphone rather than typing, at which I am exceptionally terrible. A couple of paragraphs back the speech recognition program went all wonky and I said to myself, "why are you not working?" My computer heard that as "re: network gaming." Either I talk too fast, or I'm mumbling, or God is sending me a message that I am playing too much Slingo online.)