We packed up the car today and headed 45 minutes up the highway to do some shopping, the first of my birthday festivities. I do most of my shopping at Target (like you didn't know that) but every now and then I crave the
hassle and unpleasant experience excitement of big city shopping. Although I'm not sure many of you will consider a half million people "big" but coming from my little 20-thousand people town, to me it's big. I very much dislike driving there. My kind of traffic is following a tractor for a quarter of a mile. Three lanes of cars tailgating at 85mph is the worst. I think I said, "I hate people" 25 times today. It's not the people, it's their driving. Some how word got out that the red light still means GO for the first 3 seconds.
We made it there safely just before noon and right away I got some shopping in at Macy's for new eye shadow. I chose "Switch" and "Naked Lunch," which was partially picked because of its name. It was between Naked Lunch and "Ricepaper" and the former just sounds so much more fun. This technique also works for paint color. If it's between two, pick the one with the better name.
Do you ever get new makeup and feel excited about waking up and getting ready in the morning? I do. Noelle gets excited about escalators.
I'm a frugal shopper. Paying full price is literally painful for me to do but when my husband says he wants to buy me a new pair of jeans...well...I'm not crazy. It doesn't hurt when he swipes the card. I only let him do it on special occasions, like my birthday or our anniversary (I'm talking about buying jeans) and only if they are reasonably priced. The Joe's Jeans I love are $79.99 at Nordstrom Rack, the exact same pair can be found at Macy's for $178. So although they are relatively expensive jeans, I'm really saving a hundred bucks... :)
Mr. G is a collector of quality jeans as well. I usually find myself standing here for several minutes in anticipation of a mini fashion show. Today he emerged from the dressing room with a sexy pair of straight legged Joe's. "Those look great!" I exclaimed.
"These are mine. The ones I tried on are too short."
Good thing I liked them. What if he came out and I said, "Those are terrible!"
I love shopping with my husband. It's so easy. When we double-team it I wonder how on earth I do anything without him. He manhandles the Bob. When I'm alone I dread having to enter a store that doesn't have automatic doors and getting that sucker in and out of the car just about sends me to the E.R. But Mr. G maneuvers it around with ease.
I also love watching other people as he pushes the kids around in the stroller. I walk a few steps behind him and observe women glance at Noelle and Noah and then smile at him. I'm not sure if they are thinking, "Cute kids, hot guy" or "Did he steal those pale, blonde-haired babies?" Either way, they continue walking and see me and I watch their eyes as their mind connects the dots. They flash me a half smile as they pass and I nod as to say, "Yep, they're mine."
Noah is a walker now, sealing his new title as a toddler. As a mom of two, I have some useful advice for eating out.
First, table liners are essential. Stick that bad boy to the table and you have a sanitary eating surface for your hungry munchkin and a super easy clean up at the end.
Mr. G and I like to eat what we like to eat, which isn't typically what the kids like. So today I ran into Panera Bread and ordered the organic Mac & Cheese meal which comes with organic yogurt. Then we went to Chipotle, ordered what we like, and ate together. It might be a little bit of a hassle to go to two separate places sometimes, but kids do much better when they have something familiar to eat.
Ask for a side of something snackable. Like rice, olives, chips, pinto beans, bread, diced tomatoes, etc. Let the kids munch on it if you have to wait for your food.
It always helps to bring your own drinks for the kids. A full sippy cup of juice has saved my life on several occasions.
Buy a "special toy" that stays in your purse and only comes out to play during eating out.
This is also a great trick for changing a wiggly toddler. Keep the toy on the changing table and only give it to the toddler during a diaper change. Find something that plays music and has lights that will keep their attention for a couple of minutes.
Use your phone for emergencies. Download a movie before you head out and play it if things get noisy.
After a somewhat successful trip of shopping we made it home, changed into our comfy's and got groovy playing a sweet game of Just Dance Kids. Sister has rhythm far beyond her years.
And now it's time for some basketball and popcorn. Rock Chalk Jay Hawk!