Friday, November 23, 2007

Just Call Me Crazy

Bummer! I guess the whole NaBloPoMo thing didn't work out so well for me. Oh well, life goes on! :) That's why I didn't "officially" jump on the bandwagon to begin with.
We are doing fine here. We have had a crazy couple of days. Crazy. Today that word took on a whole new meaning for me. I have mentioned, quite a few times, my love for shopping. I have to admit that I absolutely love Black Friday. It is one of my favorite days of the year.

I am sure that some of you find it insane to get up at the butt crack of dawn, stand in a massive line, fight the crowd to get into the store, fight the crowd to find the item you are looking for that somehow has managed to be put on a display in the isle on the opposite side of the store than normal, to then stand in a massive line again to spend lots of money on things that, not only do your children not need, but will only make your home more cluttered than it already is. Well, you are right. It is insane. And I absolutely LOVE it!! There is something very exciting to me about searching through the ads to find the great deals and then getting up LONG before the rooster crows to get some shopping done!

It started last night when my sister, Tracy, and I spread ourselves and about 354 pages of ads out across my family room floor and started putting together our game plan. The game plan is a VERY important part of the day after Thanksgiving shopping. We flipped and sorted and circled everything in the ads that we could conceivably want to try to get. We decided what stores we wanted to hit and in what order we needed to go to them. She spent the night at my house so we didn't waste precious time trying to pick each other up or meet up somewhere. We said our good nights and headed to bed.

We decided that Kohl's would be our first stop. There was a set of pans that I wanted to get from there....when we got to the store I snapped a quick photo of the clock...

Yup, that's AM! We wanted to be there right when the doors opened. (I wanted the pans, but wouldn't have been heartbroken if I didn't get them, otherwise we would have been in line MUCH earlier than that) While in the store I saw a mom pushing a double stroller with two small, sleeping children in it. Now, that is some shopping devotion! I think she probably gets the award for the craziest shopper of the day. :)When it comes to shopping, Tracy and I are pros. We were in and out of Kohl's and back in the car (headed to get in line at Toys'R'Us) by 4:15.

As we were getting out of the car and heading to the line that was forming at TOYS'R'US I noticed that there was a lone cart sitting in the cart corral by where we were parked. SCORE!!! For those of you that have braved these crowds before you know that unless you get to the store REALLY, REALLY, REALLY early there is a slim chance that there will be a cart left by the time you get to the entrance of the store. We snagged the cart and headed for the line.

I love listening to and talking to the other crazies that are in line at 4:30 in the morning. There was an older man that was in line, alone, standing right behind me. He kept peering over my shoulder as to say ""Hey! I'm lonely. Can I join in your conversation??" So, I stepped off to the side a little and he started talking to us. He was obviously a rookie shopper. How do I know this? Well, at one point in the conversation he said "Do you think they will open the doors early since there are so many people here already?" Awww, cute, huh? My reply was "Ummm, no way. Those people inside are not looking forward to what is about to hit them. They're gonna keep us out here as long as possible." At least we are in Florida so it was nice and warm outside, even that early. I was in a t-shirt. :)Just FYI, this is what a line looks like at 4:30 in the morning....

We each had a list of things we wanted to try to find from this store. So, when the line was moving forward and we got to the door we stuck our hands together and yelled "BREAK!" and took off in separate directions. I was so glad I had the cart. I ended up with everything from my list (a total of 9 items) but they were all big and I still had to carry one of them while trying to push the cart through the sea of people. I do have to say that TOYS'R'US was not very organized. It is too long of a story to try and write here, but let's just say it involved a "wall" of large, boxed TVs that was most likely a fire hazard, a useless employee and a scary line dictator.

We were in and out of TOYS'R'US and back in the car and headed over to get in yet another line at Target by 5:20. I avoided getting a cart there. Getting through the toy section at Target is a lot like being in a mosh pit. If you aren't good at dodging flying elbows, it isn't the place for you. I can't tell you how many people ram the back of your ankles with their cart trying to shove and push their way to whatever toy they are trying to get their hands on. It's a friggin' TOY people!! (Of course, that is easy for me to say because I got everything I wanted from Target too!!!)

By 6:12 we were back in the car. That has to be a record!! From there we headed to Staples. My sister wanted to try and get a navigation system for her car. We knew it would be a long shot because we weren't there at 6 when they opened. We walked into the store and had to push our way through a line that had started forming at the photo center and had already "snaked" back and froth across the store 3 times. We found a man that was working back in the technology section.
"Do you have any of these left??" Tracy asked as she pointed to the picture in the ad.
"You see that big, long line that is forming at the photo center?" he said. "Good luck to you!" and he flashed a smile and walked away. We left.

Skip ahead to......

By the time it was just after 8 we had gone to 6 different stores and had eaten breakfast. We were crashing pretty hard by now. I had been shopping for longer than I had slept the night before! So, we decided to head home.

There is just something about this day. I love the hustle and bustle of the crowds and hearing the Christmas music playing in the stores (up until this day it is just annoyingly early to hear any sort of Christmas music!) and getting some amazing deals and talking to new people and I get some sort of rush out of fighting the crowds and coming out victorious. So, to all you fellow crazies out there:
I hope you had a fun filled day of long lines, great deals and hopefully no black eyes or broken bones!


Kellan said...

You are CRAZY - but I wish I had been there with you. What fun.

Jill said...

I have lurked here a few times, so finally, I will comment.
I agree, you are crazy, but what a great feeling it must be to get so much of your shoping done! My kids wanted to go shopping this morning, my 7 year old even got up at 4:00 a.m.
I couldn't see the point of taking them, because I would have been buying gifts for them. Besides, you can't move as fast with 3 kids.
I used to enjoy black friday, but I had too many bad experiences with getting there super early to find that what I came for was sold out.
So today, I slept in.
I loved your turkey jokes! I enjoy reading your blog.

utmomof5 said...

I went last year but not this year. There just wasn't anything that was worth getting up that early. I had a great time last year though. It is all about the thrill of the hunt. Glad you had a good time and got all the stuff you wanted!!


The Cochran Family said...

thanks for the advice...Im all over next year! :)

onthegomom said...

I went the last few years but not this year. However, my husband's side went to Best Buy at 8 pm to stand in line (about 30 people were already ahead of them) for a Laptop. Best Buy handed out tickets at 3:30 am and then opened the doors at 5 am. AND it was EIGHTEEN degrees here, now that is dedication if you ask me!!!! But they got their laptops. I was home WARM in my bed :)

Congrats on your finds!

Jennifer said...

Its been a while since I did the whole black friday thing. I used to map out the whole who, what, when and where and go for it, but now I either skip it (this year) or just hit one store (last year). I think it is just because they dont have what I want on sale, who knows. But I am one who used to love to get up and go stand in line in the FREEZING cold at 1AM, to wait for the stores to open at 5AM (and still not be 1st in line)and do some major shopping, LOL.
The stores finally got smart though, and are now opening at staggared hours, instead all of them opening at 5AM. Makes it easier to get to different places and still get the good stuff.