Retail Happy Hour May Be Back and I May Weep With Joy

My mom watched Miss C after Vacation Bible School yesterday while Miss A was at daycare (she had a fine morning yesterday as opposed to Wednesday when I thought we’d both spontaneously combust from stress during the short drive to daycare). I needed to run to the grocery and I had something to return to TJ Maxx and a birthday gift to buy.

I walked in TJ Maxx and my retail radar honed in on some laptop bags in a cool Asian print fabric that had just been unboxed and weren’t even priced yet. I just went on a business trip and I carried my Sony laptop in the equivalent of a brown paper sack–a cumbersome (i.e. ugly) black utilitarian laptop bag–so I nearly tripped over myself to look at these pretty bags. I reeled myself back to reality, because I don’t travel that often for work or with my laptop, but I did file them away as pay day is Monday and I’m going to come up with some dire reason I need a fashionable laptop bag, so help me God, even if I use it to transport a turkey sandwich to my office.

Back when the hubby and I were DINKS (Dual Income, No Kids), I would hit our local TJ Maxx every Thursday after work when their weekly shipment of discount designer goodness was delivered. The hubby always knew where to find me if I didn’t come straight home from work. Either that or he may have suspected I was having an affair and I was just running up my debit card to buy yet another discount designer sweater to cover the whole sordid thing up.

I’ve definitely put my inner shopaholic on the backburner the last few years. If you have two children enrolled in full-time daycare (or private school for that matter), you can probably relate to the budget crunch. Frivolous “just because” shopping doesn’t happen much any more. There are diapers to buy and mortgage payments to make, refrigerators go belly up while you’re enjoying yourselves at the beach, and unexpected boob MRIs take precedent over those hot pink wedge sandals that you would have bought in a heartbeat pre-kids. Instead, you tend to run around in Target sandals you bought on clearance and a pair of $12.99 Old Navy capri jeans with some unidentified stain on the knee and a black t-shirt.

With only six more weeks of double daycare left, I find myself counting the days when our budget isn’t squeezed quite as tight and I can buy a new laptop case and not equate the money spent to the number of diapers I could have bought (in this case, about two cases of generic Publix size 4 diapers.) Ahem.


  1. Genna says:

    I usually look at a desired item and think “what can I sell on ebay or Craig’s list to pay for this? Will hubby really miss his blackberry?”

    I miss those buying with no regrets days 🙁

  2. Jill says:

    TJ Maxx! Yeah! I didn’t know Thursday was shipment day, but I will definitely keep that in mind. And, as far as my daycare costs go, it’s just a couple hundred $$ shy of the cost of private school tuition. But at least I don’t have to buy uniforms or send his lunch!

  3. jen says:

    Oh how I can relate! I remember the days when my clothing and shoe shopping bags didn’t say either Walmart or Target.

  4. Amy says:

    Those tuition bills are tough! I am struggling with one child in school. Lucky for me (although I didn’t realize it at the time) my daughter will be just starting when we are done paying for preschool and moving our son into our charter school. I hadn’t realized how smart it was until I started looking at the tuitions for two kids. Yikes!

  5. Richie Ann says:

    Yeah, I don’t have ANY money just for me anymore. Sometimes it makes me bitter but then I go ahead and buy the sippy cup instead of the new shirt. But someday, someday…I’m gonna buy myself a non-nursing bra and that’s going to be a great day!

  6. Nancy says:

    Theoretically we will be cutting back on day care costs in a few weeks ourselves. But I have a feeling most of that cash is spoken for already — we need our stucco redone in the back, the house painted, new roof, replacement doors…

    Sigh. Retail therapy is definitely much more satisfying.

  7. Desiner Bags says:

    I agree with your post. Which is not something I will usually do! 🙂 I enjoy reading a post that will make one think. Also, thanks for allowing me to comment!

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