It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

As a reward, I did some Black Friday shopping for moi. Woo hoo! Health supplements! That doesn’t scream “arthritic old lady” at all.

I’m done with my holiday shopping!

I know, I know, it sounds like a brag, but it’s really not. And I’ll tell you why.

First of all, I typically shop year-round. Again, yes, I realize this sounds braggy AND crazy, but the truth is, it backfires more than you’d imagine — from people no longer liking LEGOS or Minecraft in the seven months that passed from the time you bought the super discounted set until the next Christmas to the dubious practice of buying kids’ clothes in advance. It’s not especially smart to buy that stuff a year out ’cause — get this — THEY GROW.

The harsh reality: If you buy all year long, you have a loooooot of time to lose stuff. To wit: I bought my first 2020 Christmas gift only two months after the 2019 holiday but it took me the rest of the year to find where I had stashed it. Another year I knew I’d wrapped some gifts, yet they didn’t make it under the tree. So after everything had been opened, I obsessively hunted in every spare moment I didn’t have to work, cook or drive kids somewhere. Days later, I found them. Turns out the gifts had slid from the top shelf where they were tucked away and fallen behind a very embarrassing storage area jammed too full of travel bags and accessories that are very rarely used. Whoops. On the upside, I had a great jump start (presents purchased AND wrapped!) on the next Christmas.

My Yule log — the notebook for jotting down what I buy and now, where I hide things — is a lifesaver. I’ve also started keeping track of gift ideas for people, too, on my iPhone. I honestly don’t know how I spent so many years as a reporter, and yet sadly, my notes make NO SENSE. They’re kind of indecipherable. Part of this, I’m sure, can be blamed on stupid Siri and autocorrect. Here’s a sample entry in ye old notes app: “Joe psycho tuna octopus purple skull.”

What even is that? It sounds like a bunch of Mad Libs answers. So weird. Because I am stubborn, I set out to solve the mystery of the tuna octopus. I did manage to uncover that there is actually a “California lifestyle” brand called Psycho Tuna. However, I couldn’t possibly have had a gift idea from a hipster place like that for my khaki pants-lovin’, puffy-vest wearin’ husband, so I don’t know what to think. Some people sleepwalk, maybe I sleepnote?

Anyway, it doesn’t matter. He’s got enough presents and now that it’s a wrap — ha! — on the the gift buying for everyone else, I figure I’ve earned the right to be a little, uh, elfish, and go Kristen shopping.

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