Tag Archive 'shopping'

Oct 22 2013

Citrus Lane – October 2013 box

Published by under Parenting,Products/Shopping,The Boy

Our second Citrus Lane box arrived last week. I wanted to give The Boy some time to handle the contents and see how he liked them before I rated the box. For me, the initial impression was “Meh”. However, since he seems to enjoy the two main items, I guess this gets a passing baby grade.

October 2013 box

OK, so The Boy is 20 months old this month. This is the box he got.

Cool It Buddy instant cold packs
Amazon price: $4.99
OK, so it’s a cold pack. Or specifically, it’s a package of two cold packs. Useful and everything, but I’ve had instant cold packs in my medicine cabinet since The Boy started moving around independently. I can’t imagine not having cold packs around with a wonky toddler going full tilt around the house all the time. I tossed these in the medicine cabinet with the rest of them.

Boon Water Bugs Floating Bath Toy with Net
Amazon price: $7.99
Comes with three plastic water bugs that float in the water, and a net to catch them with. The theory is that it helps with hand-eye coordination and motor skills, but The Boy laughs in the face of intended toy use. He floats the net in the water and puts the bugs inside. Or chews on them. He plays with it, though, so it gets a passing grade.

 Green Tones Train Whistle (by Hohner)
Amazon price: $19.84
It’s a nice whistle. It has a good sound. It’s made of sustainable rubberwood, and other non-toxic materials. The Boy enjoys hearing us blow it, but he hasn’t figured out blowing himself, yet. I’m sure when he does, I’ll be sick of this toy in no time flat. It’s nice that it’s also shaped like a train so he could pretend with it as well. Personally, if I saw this toy in a store, there’s no way I would pay $20 for it. It’s also worth noting that two days after we got it, he dropped it on the floor and one of the decorative blocks broke off. The glue holding it to the main body gave way. It was simple to reattach it with wood glue, but it was an eye-roll worthy moment, when the big, sustainable, non-toxic, expensive train whistle broke due to normal toddler handling.

Babybug Magazine (one issue)
Yearly print subscription is $33.95 at www.cricketmag.com, one issue value approximately $2.83
The Boy was underwhelmed by this. He looked at it one time, but every time we’ve picked it up since then, he’s refused it. We also got a coupon for a free digital subscription or reduced priced print subscription to this mag, but I threw it out, so I can’t put down the details. Regardless, we won’t be redeeming it. The Boy isn’t into digital content yet, and he didn’t care for the print, so it would be a waste either way. I will give this “magazine” props for being printed on very heavy paper. It’s like glossy book paper, not thin magazine paper. It is much more durable and will hold up well to a toddler paging through it. The pages will still tear, but shouldn’t rip with normal handling.

This is one of those instances where the monetary value of the box will exceed my subscription price, but the actual value will not. The train whistle I would have rated at most as a $10 toy. My husband told me he wouldn’t have spent $5 on it, but he is notoriously 1980s in his mental pricing. The cold packs are practical, but I think it would be a challenge to find a Citrus Lane subscriber who is parenting a toddler and who doesn’t have cold packs in her arsenal already. Maybe I’m wrong about that.

The total cost of items in this box was $35.65 (not including the free or reduced magazine subscription). My subscription cost was $25.00.

Want to get $10 off of your own Citrus Lane box? Click here!

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Sep 25 2013

Curses, Foiled Again!

Published by under Friends,The Boy

Today, I drove two hours with The Boy in order to go to a huge sample sale that Macker’s company was throwing. We’re talking major deals, 7 hours only. I was so there. Mackers had sent me a map because the town she works in is a little on the dorkily-laid-out side, so once I got into town, I checked the map. Then I realized I have no “follow map” skills, so I punched in the name of her company to Google Maps and let the GPS guide me.

The GPS took me down a road to a building that had a tent set up in the parking lot. Big sale signs everywhere. Hey, I made it! I parked, got The Boy set up in his stroller with snacks, drink, and DVD (I don’t want to hear it) and we went into the sale, where the first thing I noticed is that the deals were not as great as Mackers had gotten for me in the past. This was my first time actually going to this sale. Usually, I give her a list and she does what she can (it’s samples remember, not a regular store sale), and she brings me awesome things and I give her small amounts of money. I was not finding those deals, and I wondered if those were employee-only deals that were only seen at the employee sale the day before. Nevertheless, I did some shopping and found two dresses and a shirt, and these things were marked down significantly, so I was not unhappy.

Pretty soon, Mackers texted me that she needed to run out to her car and could I meet her in the employee lot so we could chat for a few minutes and she could get a peek at The Boy? I was like, yeah! I just checked out, but I don’t know where the employee lot is. She asks, well, where are you right now?

Me: I’m in the lot across the street from the building.

Mackers:….There is no parking lot across the street from the building.

Me: Well, I’m standing in a parking lot, looking at a building, and the sign has all of your brands on it.

Mackers: And what is this building called?

Me: It’s called “City Brands Store”.

Mackers: Where ARE you? That is not my company’s headquarters.

Me: I don’t know! Google Maps took me here. I was kind of wondering where all the crowds were.

Mackers: I’m coming to get you; you’re downtown somewhere. How you got there I do not know. But I will bring you to where the rest of us are.

And she did. She came and led me across town to a much larger sale, and was like “Here, dumbass. Now you can shop.” And I was like “I really am a dumbass. Thank you.”

So, I parked again and got The Boy all situated AGAIN and we trundled to the very large tent sale that had blaring music and a lot of people. And we got to the entrance and the security guard said “You have to leave your stroller.” Uh, what? So he repeated “You have to leave your stroller” and he gestured to seven or eight other parked strollers. So, I got The Boy out of the stroller and said “Hey buddy, you want to walk for a bit?” And that’s when The Boy lost. his. mind. He was all done with this bullshit. Full on, screaming, hitting, no way no how am I going in that tent, you can just go to hell, put me back in the stroller with my snacks and my drink and my movie because I am OVER THIS MESS.

There was really nothing to be done, so I said “Ok, bud. No more shopping. I got the message. We’re going to Grandma’s.” Then I packed him up and we drove to my parent’s house, which was about 30 minutes away. No huge deals for me, but as I told Mackers, I’m counting this as the trial run. Next year I’ll know where the sale is, and I’ll know it is definitely not a kid friendly event.

And The Boy had a wonderful time at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, so his day turned around. All’s well that ends with a non-screaming baby.


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Sep 04 2013


Published by under Photos,Snippets,The Boy

Kid at Meijer, looking at The Boy:
“I wish I had a robot, I wish I had a robot, I wish I had a robot, I wish I had a robot…shirt like that one.”

It is a pretty cool robot shirt.


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Nov 02 2011

Maternity Clothes Shopping

Published by under Pregnancy,Rants

Warning: gratuitous use of capital letters ahead.

I’ve never really been the type of person who, when shopping for clothing, wanted a salesperson stuck to me. If one approaches me while I’m looking, my general response is “I’m all right, just looking around.” And then…they go away. And that’s exactly what I want. However, I’ve learned that maternity salespeople are a WHOLE different breed. I’ve tried the “I’m just looking around, I’ll let you know if I need anything” line, but every single time the salesperson just stands right there and keeps talking to me about sales and products and what in particular am I looking for? The one from yesterday (at Macy*s), actually TOOK THE SWEATER I was looking at out of my hands and hung it back up on the rack! All the time still talking about sales and promotions! Who the hell does that and expects the customer to remain receptive? This lady, obviously. She also tried pressuring me into buying a winter coat. “Well, you know, if you want a winter coat from here, you’d better buy one soon because I run out of sizes early.” Oh, thanks lady, I’m sure I’ll keep that in mind if I ever feel like spending $150 on a coat that I will wear for FOUR WHOLE MONTHS.

The other thing that bugs me is the prying questions into how big my wardrobe is. How is that relevant? “So, do you have a lot of maternity clothes, or are you just starting to get a few pieces, or…?” What does it matter? I may purchase this shirt. If I have 4 or 40 other shirts at home, I STILL may purchase this shirt. Why do you care how many clothes I have? I have never been asked this by any other kind of salesperson, only maternity salespeople. I can’t fathom a Best Buy employee asking me how many other computers I have at home, as though the one I’m buying now might not get enough love.

Has anyone else experienced this, or is it just me? I’m willing to concede that I might look like someone who is clearly lost and needs a lot of hand-holding, but you’d think that after I used the polite version of “Please leave me alone”, they would actually leave me alone.

2 responses so far

Sep 14 2011

Is that a compliment?

Published by under Pregnancy,Snippets

I went to the Motherhood Maternity outlet yesterday because I only had one pair of maternity jeans (graciously purchased for my by one of my sisters-in-law), and I need at least two wearable pairs of jeans in order to function. I walked in the door, and I was the only one in the store, except for the sales person, who was a woman. This sales person immediately came over to me and launched into a monologue about the store, the clothes, the styles, the fits, the features, etc. I literally could not get a word in other than “Yes” or “No”. Eventually, she asked what I was looking for and I told her I needed a pair of jeans. Then she asked what my pre-pregnancy size was. When I told her, she gave me a VERY obvious once over and asked in disbelief “Really?” I must have given her quite a look, because she qualified, “You don’t look like you should be in that big of a size.” I kept my mouth shut, but what I really wanted to say was “Honey, just because I have a waist doesn’t mean I don’t also have a big, fat ass” and then sticking it out and making various white people shout.

As a side note, I tried on four pairs of jeans at Motherhood. Two were WAY too long. There were at least four inches of material tucked under my feet, and they were the “regular” length. One was EIGHTY DOLLARS. I mean to say, Good Lord. Lucky for me, the last pair was dark rinse, boot cut, and maybe only an inch too long. Also, reasonably priced. I guess the lesson is, make sure you try on your maternity pants, because they are not all formed or priced the same.

3 responses so far

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