Let’s go to the mall!

Would you believe I was in the mall the other day and I DIDN’T go to Athleta?  It’s true.  Would you believe I have lived in Providence for two and a half months now, within easy reach of Athleta after a year and a half of being two hours from the nearest one, and I haven’t been even once?  Also true.  I must be ill.  Would you believe I went into a bookstore yesterday and didn’t buy a single book?  You would?  You’re gullible.

We were at the mall over the weekend to see the third Thor movie, which is BY FAR the best of the Thor movies.  Those first two were pretty bad.  The second one is easily the worst of the Marvel movies.  This one was more like Guardians of the Galaxy – funny, fast-paced, and fun.

The mall was all decked out for Christmas, and we had to go through the entire thing, from the basement level to the top floor, and from one end to the other, to get from the car to the movie theater.  We didn’t do any shopping – I’m afraid that once we go back so we can buy stuff, we’ll be holiday’d out faster than usual.  Would you believe it?  Somehow we’ll live.

Love at first sight

I have fallen in love with a pair of shoes.  They’re the ultimate Disney princess shoes, and my heart aches for them.

I saw them on Tom & Lorenzo’s site, and for the first time in my life I was compelled to go to the designer’s website to see more.  If it’s possible to fall further in love, I did when I saw them in midnight blue.

They’re calling out my name.  “Buy me, Zannah!  We’ll be so happy together!”  I don’t have anywhere to wear them or anything to wear them with, but those are tiny details.  Are they comfortable?  Who cares?  (Okay, I do, but let’s put that aside.)  Do they come in narrow?  Probably not.  Are they more than I pay in rent?  …..Yes.  Yes, they are more than I pay in rent.

Drat.

I love them, I do, but the don’t-buy-them factors are adding up and the practical side of me says I don’t get to be a princess in $2150 shoes that don’t go with anything I own, that probably aren’t comfortable, that probably won’t actually fit, and will sit in my closet unworn because I don’t have any occasions to wear them.

I will have to find some other kind of princess to be.  Like this one.

But oh, those shoes.

I prefer options

Here’s a downside to smaller towns: the shopping sucks.  I decided to buy a new dress for Corey’s wedding because I don’t have anything between somewhat formal and t-shirt dress, and I don’t want to wear either of those things on a beach.  I didn’t want to order anything online because EVERYthing fits differently and while trying on all the clothes at the mall sucks, it sucks less than ordering a bunch of things, trying them on, and then returning them.  I hate returning stuff I bought I online.  Anything that involves shipping packages is a pain.

Eugene has a mall, so I went there after work today.  The mall is pretty lame – I miss Tyson’s Corner Center – but it has two department stores, a Loft, and a Banana Republic.  The other stores are for teenagers.  I feel out of place just looking in the windows.

Loft first – no dresses, but their tank tops were $6 each so I bought two.

Banana Republic – only work clothes.

Macy’s – plenty of dresses, but most were more formal or too mother-of-the-bride.  I found two that could work and asked them to hold them for me.

JC Penney’s – yes, I went to Penney’s.  It was the last option in the mall, and you know?  I found a dress there that’ll do the trick AND it was on surprise sale.  Love that.

Turns out I want a place that has better shopping that one tiny mall.  Even though I rarely shop.

Wait – I just thought of something important I have to look up and….YES, there is an Athleta in Providence.  YAY!

Pick a little, talk a little

After rubbing several layers of skin off on one spot on my right calf during Tuesday’s riding lesson (a spot I discovered hours later when hot water hit it in the shower and I shrieked in pain), I have decided it is finally time to shop for real riding clothes.  I need full seat breeches, a helmet of my own, and real riding boots.  I will probably get paddock boots, actually, and half chaps, instead of tall riding boots, since that’s what was recommended to me by two different people (Wendy being one of them).  Still, the half chaps will protect my calves.

Wendy suggested I go to this farm store to check out sizes for pants and boots and then order them online, but I finally went out there this afternoon and they had NOTHING.  They had a whole section for clothes and shoes, but it was all western.  No riding boots, just cowboy boots, and no breeches.  No chaps of any kind.  I tried another similar store, but they didn’t have anything, either, so now I have to shop online.

BUT wait!  Complaining about shopping online is not why I’m here tonight.  The shopping trip wasn’t a total bust because the first farm store had baby chickens!  Tanks and tanks of baby chickens!  I only took a picture of the bin with the fluffy yellow chicks, but they had all kinds and they were making adorable cheeping noises and IT WAS SO CUTE I didn’t want to leave.

But I did leave, and I’m glad I did (WITHOUT taking home any baby chicks) because the next store had harnesses.  For your chickens.

So you can walk your chicken on a leash, I guess?  Or maybe go bungee jumping with her?  They came in pink, red, and blue – all colors to suit your chicken-harnessing needs!

My life is richer for knowing people take their chickens on walks.

A day in the big city (don’t laugh)

I don’t know if you know this, but Portland is cool, and we need to spend more time there.  We had the whole day to play, but it was cold and raining ice pellets, so walking around wasn’t really an option.  I mean, we still stayed all day (we got home just a few minutes ago, a little after 10), but we drove from place to place and dashed from store to store.  We had brunch at Gravy, which was SO GOOD, and then we went to this synthesizer store so John could play with all the toys, and then we went to a used music store so John could try out other toys, and then we went BACK to the synth store so John could buy the toys he was playing with earlier, then a quick stop at a comic book shop, the Doc Martens store (the original one!) where John found shoes that actually fit (!), Athleta for me (where I tried on everything in the store, of course), and POWELL’S.

And then we came home.  I could sleep for days.

All for me!

It’s a beautiful day and the presents I bought for myself arrived!  Both packages were delayed because of the weather, but they came today and the sun is shining!

First, as you can see, is a little TARDIS backpack.  Bigger on the inside, naturally, big enough to hold my laptop (which is in there in that picture). I love my Bag of Holding, but it’s a little bulky if all I want to do is take my laptop and a book to Allan Bros.

Makes a good carry-on.

Then my Athleta stuff came!  Athleta is in the middle of their end/beginning of the year sale, which is pretty much the best time to shop with them.  I got a lightweight long-sleeve top, my favorite pants in gray, and new running tights, which I will wear when I got to the gym this afternoon because they came today!

Sorry about all the !!! but I’m very excited about my purchases.  Plus it’s Friday and the work day is over and the work week is over and I don’t have to get up before the sun for two whole days.

The only bad thing about today is that my riding lesson was cancelled.  The snow on Wednesday plus lack of melting yesterday plus below freezing temps for three days equals too much work on a horse farm to make time for teaching lessons (which I totally get).  Somehow I’ll make it to next Wednesday.

Offputting

We went into every gift shop in each of the three Disney parks we visited.  That’s not an exaggeration – we went into every single one.  For the most part, they carry the same stuff.  Ride gift shops had some ride-specific toys and shirts, and the other shops had some park-specific stuff, but mostly they were the same.  The World Showcase shops in Epcot had the most variation, and it was there I saw the most disturbing thing.

We were in fake Mexico, in the fake market inside.  I leaned forward to look at an anklet, and then threw myself backwards when I got a closer look at the mannequin ankle it was displayed on.  (I may have overreacted a bit, but it took me by surprise.)

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It’s unnerving, right?  Is it a heeled shoe with toes?  A bare foot with a built-in heel?  Makes me shudder just thinking about it.  Someone miscalculated with this one.

I won’t be breaking any records soon

This weekend flew by.  We went to Oak Ridge for a gig yesterday (pretty drive, but it was hot as hell out there), and then I dragged Christina shopping with me today.  I’ve had more successful shopping trips.  Christina was really good about putting up with me in store after store, thank goodness.  I owe her for that.

We’re traveling for a wedding soon, and I’m starting to feel stress about taking off work.  Combine that with making sure I have everything I’ll need for nearly two weeks away from home, and I’m not exactly relaxed.

The running events have started, though, and that helps.  I spent a couple hours this afternoon watching the coverage online (because NBC on TV SUCKS).  Saw some great races.  I should go running, even if it’s just the pseudo-running I can do right now.

Bad timing

I got a cute sundress at Target yesterday, but I want more than one cute sundress.  More than one more cute sundress.  My one chore for the day was to bike over to Trader Joe’s to pick up dinner while John was rehearsing at Will’s house, so I figured I’d do it after I finished my long bike ride for the day.  It made sense at the time, but I didn’t think ahead to how much I don’t want to still be on a bike after that many miles.  Still, Trader Joe’s is only a mile from the house, and what’s two more miles at that point?

Yeah.

Trader Joe’s shares a parking lot with Old Navy, so I figured since I was there anyway and not in any particular hurry, I’d check out their sundresses.  They have the added benefit of being super-cheap.  It wasn’t until I took my helmet off and noticed how gross and sweaty my hair was that I thought about how gross and sweaty my whole body was.  So….maybe shopping for and trying on clothes wasn’t the best idea.  I cruised through anyway, just looking.  I’ll have to go back.

Then I was disappointed by Trader Joe’s (they don’t have fresh, non-frozen salmon!).  I couldn’t face biking to yet another store, so I called John and he picked up KFC on his way home.  I can live with that.

Delayed

I desperately need new running shoes.  Mine have worn out to the point of discomfort, and after running in them this morning, I think I may have actually done some harm to my left foot.  It’s uncomfortable enough that I’m taking tomorrow (Sunday) off, and I’m putting off buying new shoes until it feels better.

I’m disappointed.  I was really looking forward to buying new shoes this afternoon, but with my foot feeling like this, I won’t be able to tell if the shoes are uncomfortable because they’re not for me or if they’re uncomfortable because my foot hurts.

Boo and blah.

Grumble grumble grumble.  I’m off to sulk.

The beginning of the year

You’re supposed to start the new year the way you plan to continue it, right?  (Or something like that?)  Well, I noticed Athleta’s semi-annual sale AND extra 20% off all sale items, so I started this year by ordering five ridiculously-low-priced items from my favorite store for a ridiculously low total.

We did NOT stop at the grocery store on our way back from Emily and Sean’s house (even though we could have AND we talked about it), so we will not be cooking tonight.  Let that say whatever it says about how we’re handling cooking this year.  Miracles may happen somewhere, but probably not in my kitchen.

John is studying for his pilot exam, and I’m going to read (because despite what I said in one of my recent posts, I am capable of enjoying the books on my bookshelf).

Happy new year!

Like sleeping on a cloud. We hope.

Our new mattress came today!  We tried out half the mattresses in the store yesterday afternoon, picked one, and it appeared in our apartment this morning!  Like magic.  For all I know, the delivery guys were special mattress gnomes whose sole purpose in life is to bring new soft mattresses to people who’ve been sleeping on the same cheap one for 15 years.  Maybe 15 years is what it takes to get delivery gnomes instead of muggles.  All I know is that I got in the shower around midmorning, and by the time I got out, our old mattress was gone and the new mattress was in its place.  I wonder if they bake bread or fix shoes.

This picture is more exciting to me than it is to you, I know.

This picture is more exciting to me than it is to you, I know.

Settling in

Our apartment is starting to look more like a living space instead of a storage space, thanks in part to Ikea.  After we donated our couch because it wouldn’t fit (and made our first trip to Ikea), we were left with functional chairs, but no comfortable chairs (aside from the papasan chair, but we can’t both fit in that at the same time).  We went back on Sunday and picked up a couple of chairs that will do, without breaking the bank.  (We found a couple that we REALLY liked, but balked at the price tag.  We’re supposed to be spending LESS.)  Also, if they’re not all that comfortable, perhaps we’ll break our habit of watching too much TV in the evenings.  I suppose we’ll see.  Having random moving-related errands to run after work has certainly helped keep us away from it (not having internet or cable until last Thursday helped, too), but I imagine it’ll be a bigger temptation in the winter, when it’s cold and dark again.  And I might not feel guilty about giving in then.

I hope we can take a break from making decisions soon, too.  I’m over it, to the point where I’m dithering about really stupid things.  I can still figure out what to wear in the mornings, but I wanted to pick up a couple of placemats for my desk, and I stood there staring at the selections for SO long.  It’s not like it was a big commitment; the silly things cost $2 each.  I could not decide.  I did eventually (I went with basic black – no risk to the room’s color palette (which doesn’t exist yet)), and there’s no buyer’s remorse (over the placemats OR the chairs), but I think I need a rest from decision-making.  And I’ll take one, right after we choose a new mattress.  That is not going to be easy.

New shoes! And then more new shoes!

I had a rougher time than usual buying new running shoes over the weekend.  My running shoes were shot -I’ve had them for over year…I’m actually not sure how much longer than a year I’ve had them.  Way too long, certainly, and I could feel it when I ran.  I went to my local running store last Friday evening, tried on 5 or 6 pairs of shoes over the course of 90 minutes (I had a very chatty sales guy), decided on a pair of New Balance shoes, and went home.

See my pretty purple shoes?

See my pretty purple shoes?

I took Saturday off from running, so I just admired my pretty pretty shoes, and then Sunday I took them for their inaugural run.  It was also their final run.  My feet hurt in ways they’ve never hurt before, in places they have never hurt before.  I ran a little over 4 miles, just to make sure I was fully warmed up and loose, and it didn’t get better, so I went back to the store Sunday afternoon.

The chatty sales guy was there and recognized me right away.  He brought out my two runner-up pairs, but he had other customers (who were there when I got there), so I didn’t get much help after that.  I didn’t really need any help, though, so it wasn’t a big deal.  I just tried on one pair, ran around the store, then the other, ran around the store, then the first, then the second, then one on each foot, etc., until I felt comfortable enough with my decision.  Of course, this time I was a little gun-shy – what if I chose badly again?  And I didn’t make it easier on myself – I didn’t choose the same model I had before.  I chose another pair of New Balance shoes, a brand I’ve never bought and the brand of the shoes that didn’t work for me just that day.  But they’re so pretty!

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I promise I didn’t pick them just because they’re pretty, and luckily, after two runs now (and a total of 11.5 miles), I can confirm that they’re good (and I am relieved).  Yay new shoes!  But I will be forever nervous when I buy new running shoes in the future.

Tempting

I saw an email from DSW about their GREAT BIG SALE (!) this morning. I get one of those emails at least once a week (from DSW – I get plenty of others from other places), and I’m not usually moved to shop. I guess the timing was perfectly right on this one. I know that I don’t need more shoes, but I really want more shoes! RESIST!

I can beat this. I don’t need shoes. But a cute pair of little white mesh sneakers, or a pair of sandals that’s nicer than flip-flops, but still casual enough for shorts (and comfortable), or a pair of slip-on sneakers good for walking…

This is why I need to unsubscribe from all store distribution lists.

Vive la résistance!

Missed it by one

We managed to do every single thing on our list for the weekend except one.  I still need a pedicure.  But I can probably get that done after work some night.  Clearly not tonight – I had to work late, and now that I’m home, I’m still waiting for someone to get back to me so I can do some more work.  Boo. But everything else, we did this weekend, including a trip to my favorite store.  I am the proud new owner of two new pairs of running capris and two new pairs of running shorts.  I will be happy to weed out some of my older workout clothes.  I love that place.  It wasn’t busy, so I had three sales people helping me.  I needed all three of them; I must have tried on half the clothes in the store.  Too bad I couldn’t buy them all.  Ooh, maybe that’s my new life goal.  Redo my wardrobe so it comes 100% from Athleta and Ann Taylor.  And then gets updated regularly.

I make an easy target

Apparently, all it takes is one day of nice weather for me to get hit with the shopping bug.  It’s still mild (for now), but I’ve started to feel twinges when I drive by DSW, and I’m getting itchy clicker fingers when I get emails about sales from stores.  I got an email about the Ann Taylor Factory Store sale at the outlet mall that’s only a few miles from me, and now I’m fighting the urge to take an afternoon off to shop.  It’s only the beginning of spring.  It’s going to get so much worse.

Breathe deep and remember: I don’t need more stuff.  I don’t need more stuff.  I don’t need more stuff.

Epiphany: If I get rid of things and replace them, it doesn’t count as more stuff!

Wish I hadn’t thought of that.

My couch is a nice place to be

Online shopping is the best.  It’s the Saturday after Thanksgiving, and John and I are nearly done with our Christmas shopping (it’s low-key this year, anyway).  We have yet to see the inside of a mall.  I’m sure we’ll go, but by then it’ll be more to enjoy the decorations and the music.  I like the mall during the holidays as long as I’m not one of the desperate shoppers.  Also, I’m on the couch, laptop on lap, wearing my pjs.  It’s 2pm.  🙂  This is okay with me.

Take deep breaths and count to ten

I’ve been really irritated with Amazon this week.  It’s probably (almost certainly) not their fault, but that doesn’t change how I’ve felt (and how I feel now – there’s no need to be rational).  I got my new phone last Saturday (which you already know).  The Sprint store didn’t have any accessories for it, so the first thing I did when I got home that night was go to Amazon and order a screen protector and a case (three, actually – I can’t decide until I see them in person).  Unfortunately, nothing I ordered was being fulfilled by Amazon directly – they were all coming from the sellers.  My order status was “Preparing for Shipment” starting Saturday night all the way until last night, when the stuff finally shipped.  That might have been okay, but the estimated delivery dates were Jan 31st to Feb 4th the entire time, and there was a message about the status that said the delivery dates wouldn’t be affected.  I’m going to have to call bullshit on that.  If you don’t ship until late Wednesday night, there’s no way the package is going to be delivered by Friday (short of using some sort of express shipment method, which I did not pay for and was not expecting).  So why not adjust the delivery dates?  That’s totally something Amazon controls.  Yes, I’ll probably still have it by the time I get back, but all week I’ve been hoping to have that stuff before we leave for the weekend and now my hopes are dashed.  Dashed!  Manage my expectations, Amazon!  It would have been so easy to set me up for mild disappointment that I wouldn’t have my stuff in time instead of irritation that you jerked me around.  I’m running around with a phone that doesn’t have a screen protector and has NO case whatsoever and now I have to travel with it that way.  Disappointment is acceptable.  Irritation is, well, irritating.  Too bad I don’t go to yoga anymore – maybe yoga would help me transform my irritation into acceptance.