April 1, 2021 – A waste of a day.

I feel kind of ridiculous at the moment. I talked a big game a couple of nights ago about all the time I was going to gain by only writing every other day. There’s more than enough to do so I figured that with all of the extra time, I could really make a dent in all of the projects on my to-do list and activities I endeavor to pursue. Today would have been the perfect day to work on the yard or go for a hike or ride my bike or even remove all of the doors in the bathroom and finally paint them. It was an absolutely beautiful day! Instead of doing something productive or enjoyable, I chose to go shopping. My instincts told me otherwise, but I went anyway. I must not have been thinking clearly when I made this decision because I hate shopping! It is one thing to shop for groceries. Groceries are necessary. It’s another to shop for ‘stuff’. Prior to leaving the house, I had written down the following: pooper scooper, robe for hubby, 3 bathroom rugs, winter boots, moccasin slippers for hubby, and a king size sheet set with extra deep pockets. I had also written down Costco, Walgreen’s, Safeway, Marshall’s, and Ross.

Before I say anything more, I would like you to know that not only did I go to the stores I listed in the previous paragraph, I also went to Macy’s, Grocery Outlet, Papa Murphy’s, PetSmart, and Famous Footwear. Yes, I went to a total of 10 stores today! What did I wind up with after all of that shopping? Two bathroom rugs, one sun hat, two bottles of apple juice, and a pizza. I must have walked between 2-3 miles (going in and out and around each store) and all I came away with on my list was two of the bathroom rugs. My first stop was Walgreen’s. It kind of set the ‘tone’ for the rest of my shopping experiences. I have over $47 in store credit (from using their special coupons) and wanted to purchase some of their sour Easter candy for my husband. None of their sour Easter candy was on sale, it was all full price. Even though I had plenty of store credit to cover the expense, I couldn’t do it. I am so programmed to only buy items on sale that I have to be really desperate to fork over the money on something that isn’t marked down. I wasn’t that desperate today.

Since none of the Easter candy was marked down, I decided to check the regular candy aisle. They had one of my husband’s favorite treats, ‘Sour Nerds’. Eureka! The problem was that unless I bought two, I had to pay full price. And they only had one bag left on the shelf. I walked over to the cashier (at the photo counter) and asked if the store would honor the sale price since there was only one bag left and she shut me down. “In order to get the sale price, you have to purchase two,” she said. “Then I’m not going to buy it,” I responded, and returned it to the shelf. After that, I looked at a Bluetooth speaker in aisle 2 and some bar soap in aisle 10. Neither was on sale. I then wasted several minutes checking out all the crap on the clearance endcap at the back of the store. When it was all said and done, I ended up buying absolutely nothing. From Walgreen’s, I headed to Safeway. I had a coupon for a 64-ounce bottle of apple juice for 79 cents (limit two).

After I entered the store, on my way to the juice aisle, I had to stop by the seasonal section to see whether there was any sour candy available. A thorough investigation revealed not a single bag of sour Trolli eggs or sour Jelly Belly jelly beans or sour Jolly Rancher eggs. Bummer! Disappointed, I headed over to the juice aisle, grabbed a couple bottles of apple juice, and went directly to the self-checkout. One dollar and fifty-eight cents (and two Safeway Monopoly tickets) later, I exited the store and returned to my car. At least I came away with something that time. A trip to Costco followed Safeway. All I managed to do was fill up my tank with gas. That’s ok, it beats spending $100+, which is what I usually spend when I step foot in that store. I don’t know what it is about that place, but I can buy 3 items and inevitably the bill exceeds $100. As a result, I try to limit my visits.

Marshall’s was next on my list. I had a little more success there. I did manage to find a sun hat and two bathroom rugs but I haven’t tested the rugs out yet to determine if they’re even going to work. They are both brown in color but I don’t know whether they’re going to match or clash with the browns we have in the bathroom (floor, tile, and countertop). After a modicum of success finding one of the items on my list, I had hoped my luck would continue. Surely, a department store would carry the sheet sets and winter boots along with the robe and slippers for my hubby! I came up empty with the sheet sets and winter boots. After asking one of the sales people if there were any robes in stock, I was told the only time their store has robes is during Christmastime. Dang it! They did have slippers, and they were a reasonable price, but they only came in dark brown or black. We learned the hard way that purchasing indoor footwear in dark, solid colors is a terrible idea with a white dog as part of our household.

Confident that I would find the remaining items on my list at Ross, I headed over straightaway. I was so confident, I grabbed a shopping cart on my way in. There wasn’t a single winter boot in my size in the shoe section. Discouraged but undeterred, I continued on my quest to find the rest of the items on my list. The dog section yielded no pooper scooper but it certainly had plenty of treats and doo-dads. Right next to the dog section was the seasonal area/outdoor section as well as the kitchen section. As I took my time looking through the outdoor section, my eyes alighted upon a string of solar-powered fairy lights. They weren’t on my list, but I love fairy lights! Into the cart they went. I then cut across the aisle to the kitchen section. Before I knew it, I had placed a garlic press, can opener, soap dispenser, mini masher (good for making guacamole), and a wok into the cart. In the aisle that featured bathroom rugs and towels and such, I only found one rug that I thought would work. There was an issue, however.

A smear ran from one end of the rug to the other. It looked like a dog had dragged its butt across it. If you have or have had a dog, you know exactly what I’m talking about. After some hesitation, I put it in the cart, too. I had hoped it might clean up after I laundered it, but I wasn’t completely confident of the outcome. And as I walked through the store, from one aisle to the next, unable to find any of the actual items (aside from the dirty rug) on my list, I had a thought. “What am I doing?” I asked myself, “There isn’t a single thing in my cart that I actually need.” Yes, I already have a garlic press, two can openers, a masher, a soap dispenser, and a wok. As far as the rug, my current bathroom rug still functions even though the back is peeling off. The fairy lights? As lovely as they looked on the box, I know myself. They will likely end up stashed somewhere on the laundry room shelving (right next to the 2 brand new citronella candles and inflatable Flamingo Halloween costume), and after a couple of years, end up getting donated to a thrift store.

What did I then do? What I always do when I realize that my cart contains a whole bunch of crap I really don’t need, I put it all back. Do you do that, too? I know! It sounds nuts! Hey, at least I didn’t just leave it all in the cart and walk out of the store. You’ve got to give me some credit! Empty handed but still holding onto hope, I then proceeded to Macy’s. After checking out both floors (end to end), I discovered that all they had on my list was a man’s robe. It was unflattering and overpriced. I passed. Grocery Outlet usually carries slippers but not today! That’s actually where I bought my husband his last pair. Still, I wasn’t ready to throw in the towel just yet. I don’t want to tell you where I went next because you’re really going to think I’ve lost my sanity. Sigh. Yes, I went back to Macy’s. Hey, if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again, right?! I just ended up getting nowhere fast. Was I done? Oh, no! I don’t give up that easily! I had given up on the footwear, clothing, and household items, but I was determined to find a pooper scooper.

Since I hadn’t had any luck at Grocery Outlet or Marshall’s or Ross locating a pooper scooper, I decided to try PetSmart. The place was like a ghost town inside. When I saw their prices, I realized why. I usually pay $10 for a pooper scooper. PetSmart wanted $35! Not on my watch! What’s up with the inflated prices, PetSmart? Anyhow, as you can see, I accomplished very little after a great deal of effort. I think all I managed to do was prepare a salad from scratch, after stopping by Papa Murphy’s to pick up a ‘take ‘n’ bake’ pizza. I should have trusted my gut and stayed home. Rather than essentially wasting an entire day, I probably would have been much more productive had I heeded its advice. However, berating myself over not trusting my instincts is not going to result in anything positive. All I can do is try and learn (from my mistakes or poor choices) and do better going forward. What did I learn today? The next time my gut says, “Woman, don’t do it! Stay home,” I’m going to listen!

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