As much fun as I had frolicking about doing errands last week, it's a good thing I'm back to a normal schedule, because my credit card and I became very close buddies last week. A little too close, if you know what I mean.
Not going to work is expensive. I mean, I am happy that I got a gorgeous new red peacoat (yep, I went back and got it), and a cute new sophisticated purse, and a pair of Seven jeans. I'm just not so sure that I needed to spend $50 at Old Navy (on socks and pair of fleece sweats) (but the socks are really cute and the fleece pants are SO comfy). Or that I needed to buy two books at Barnes and Noble (but a gift certificate paid for half of one of them!). I'm positive that I didn't need to buy a pumpkin spice latte and a spinach and feta-stuffed pretzel while I was at Barnes and Noble, but man! Were they ever good.
The bottom line is that I spent almost $400, and the only things that I can truly say I needed were the $12 purse and three $11 photo albums. But my new purple argyle Old Navy socks are making my Monday a little bit brighter today, I do have to admit.
What really makes me feel that I went a little overboard is that I visited many of the stores that happily drained my bank account more than once in the same week. For starters, I had to go back to the consignment shop after convincing myself that I did in fact NEED that red peacoat. And then I had to go back to the tailor's, to add said peacoat to my order to have my Seven jeans hemmed. Then, on Saturday, I went to AC Moore to but a photo album for all of our vacation pictures, which I've just finally gotten around to having printed. I should have known that a simple in-and-out trip to AC Moore was a pipe dream, but what can I say? I'm just so naive.
I generally hate going to AC Moore (or Michael's, or any other crafty craftster place). The way they bombard you with cheap, ugly holiday "decorations" makes me cringe and want to run out screaming, "I'M NOT A CRAZY CAT LADY YET! I STILL TALK TO REAL PEOPLE AND I SWEAR, I'M NOT EVEN GOOD AT CRAFTS!!" But those places are the only places I can get the photo albums I like, because Target/Walmart/Marshall's/TJMaxx (places I consider perfectly acceptable to shop at, ironically) all insist on only carrying the kind where you slip the photos into sleeves. I don't like those kinds, because then you can't write notes under the pictures. Or doodle things like "Seattle vacation 2006". And you certainly can't paste your various boarding passes and admission tickets and other random "souvenirs" in those kind of photo albums, if there just happens to be a little vestigial packrat hidden somewhere inside your deep, dark, blackened heart.
I know what you're thinking. And you can just stop it RIGHT NOW. Because I am not a scrapbooker.
I also hate the Crafty Stores because they are overwhelming, and not in the Old Navy I-want-to-buy-everything-in-here-someone-please-help sort of way. Here's a prime example: I was also hoping to buy a patch for a pair of jeans that I desperately love, which has torn a hole in a very sensitive area. I know I've seen those iron-on blue patches before, but now that I need one, I've been unable to find one anywhere. I figured AC Moore would have to have it, since they have everything from fake plastic ivy to make-your-own wedding veil kits. Upon walking into the store, I asked someone working there if they had clothing patches, and she kindly directed me to the correct aisle, where I found a myriad of peace sign and flower power patches -- which reminded me a little too much of my own wardrobe in middle school -- but not a single plain old REPAIR patch. This only made me realize I needed to get out of there, and FAST, before I morphed magically into a 45 year old woman with a mullet and a sweatshirt with a screen printed cat on it and started asking where I could get a refill for my bedazzler.
I made a beeline for the back of the store, where I assumed that the giant sign advertising "CUSTOM FRAMING" would also indicate the rest of the photo supplies were housed in the vicinity. And lo, I was right, and I found aisle upon aisle of glass photo frames, wood photo frames, fake wood photo frames, photo collage kits, mat-cutting scissors, frameable prints of flowers and horses and motivational posters, and pretty much everything you could ever imagine relating to the art of photography. Except, no photo albums.
I could not believe that such a store would not carry a single photo album, so I came to the conclusion that they must have their own display area. And so, I set out to find them.
I was just about to give up when I saw what looked like a wedding photo album sticking out of a shelf in the far right corner of the store (next to the beading and embroidery supplies). And yes! There they were. Right under a big sign that said "SCRAP BOOKING CORNER"
Oh, hell no.
I had an impulse to walk -- nay, ran -- out right then and there, plunge my head into the decorative fountain outside, and then speed home -- possibly stopping at Ikea to restore a bit of my dignity. But I actually saw a book I sort of liked. And it was on sale. So I picked it up. And the next thing I knew, my coffee table was covered in a mess or cardstock paper, photos, and rubber cement and I was high on glue fumes and watching Bridget Jones' Diary: The Edge of Reason for the third time through. I spent the better part of the weekend hunched over that table, trying to work out the best photo arrangements and get everything aligned just so. Every time that Joel would call from Boston and ask what I was doing, I would say "NOT scrapbooking, if that's what you're thinking!" and then merrily continue pasting photo collages on each page.
The fact that I had to go back to the store for another album and more glue on Sunday means NOTHING, I tell you. I refuse to be a scrapbooker. Crazy Cat Lady, sure. I'm fine with that. Neurotic, compulsive, obsessive, FINE. Call me what you will... just mention the word scrapbook if you come over and ask to see our vacation pictures. Because then I might just have to glue your mouth shut with my stockpile of rubber cement.