Today I did my first school supply shop of the season.
I contemplated doing it yesterday, thought I might bring all five kids and just “see what happens” and after packing them in the van found myself at the Starbucks’ drive-thru instead. After a sip of caffeine, the self-injurious idea to go into a store with all my kids passed and we all went home.
Then last night my mom called and offered to come sit with the gang for a bit so I could get the shopping done today. Wow, thanks mom! I clipped together the three lists of items I need for Masha, Jade and the Gecko and weighed my store options. Staples? Target? Walmart? Last year I had to hit all three in order to fulfill the very specific teacher requests.
I made the call to go to Walmart because I figured if I got lucky time-wise I might be able to throw in a little grocery shopping too, big dreamer that I am. Wally’s was way more crowded than I ever remember it on a Friday morning at 11:30: except for maybe that one time I ended up there on Christmas Eve because our copy of The Grinch that Stole Christmas was missing (as if some damn grinch had stolen it from us) and Christmas Eve would have been completely ruined without a showing of the Grinch, but that is a whole other story.
The school supply lists in my hand were full of brand names... a Mead this, a Fiskars that, Ticonderoga pencils, and Crayola washable thin & thick everything else... God help your kid if you cheap out and buy that off-label stuff because then the teacher will know that you are either broke or really bad at following directions.
After about 45 minutes of digging through bins, comparing items to my lists, and doing the mental mathematics of whether three 2pks of glue sticks is cheaper than one 6pk (it is), I realized that there might be a hidden camera somewhere... that maybe this was a Survivor tryout and damn, I was not about to get kicked off before I even made it on. Surely the guy whose cart was blaring rap music complete with F-this and F-that lyrics up and down each school supply aisle was a prop, right?
Oh and did I mention that I was on a timer? My mom had to go somewhere so I had to be home by 12:30. The pressure was incredible. Toward the end, I just started throwing extra crap in my cart thinking I could dump it off on the way to the checkout if I decided they don’t really need it or it was the wrong stuff (sorry, yes, it was me who left those pocket folders on the shelf near the checkout.)
I spent $54, got home by 12:38, and made a big dent in the school supply shopping task, and I got my daily dose of You Suck at This. Who could ask for more?
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