Sunday, November 20, 2011

Shopping for Free

This morning we were greeted by the season's first real snowfall. While I'm grateful for the novelty of the snow today I don't expect my feelings to remain welcoming all winter long. Chances are winter will wear out its welcome long before spring decides to show up. The girls had fun playing out in the snow for a few minutes, though this morning we were still lacking some snow essentials: boots for Miriam and a hat for Rachel that doesn't feel like it's squishing her brain to smithereens. 

Andrew got the girls ready to play in the snow and managed to force the girls' heads into hats that were far too small for them. I kept telling him to find the penguin hat (because that fits Miriam perfectly this year) and I know there is another hat that Rachel and I both use somewhere in our box of winter stuff. I guess he didn't hear me because both girls ended up with too-small hats.

We went to the clothing exchange later in the morning—The Gift of the Heart Exchange—at BYU and while the pickings seemed rather slim this time around (we were hoping to do some Christmas "shopping," for example, but the toy room was nearly empty when it's usually bursting at the seams) we did manage to find a few gems. The main thing I wanted to find was a pair of boots for Miriam. We headed straight to the shoes as soon as we got inside the church and there, almost glowing on the table, was a pair of boots!

I could hear that choir in heaven singing as I picked them up to check the number on the bottom—they were exactly Miriam's size!

She was pleased as punch to find her very own pair of boots. 

Our next goal was to find a nice Sunday dress for Rachel. She has a few play dresses, but those are usually dirty by the time Sunday rolls around and I usually do laundry on Mondays. The few church dresses that fit her aren't "pretty" enough or "twirly" enough or "princessy" enough and we have to coax and/or threaten to get her into any of them. 

We walked over to the 5T table because for some reason 4T dresses barely cover Rachel's behind even though she's wearing 3T and 4T pants and shirts. Anyway, sitting on top of the pile was a gorgeous forest green, velvety, twirly, pretty, and princessy dress. It was missing a button but for the price of free I thought I could manage to sew on a button. Rachel is in love with the dress, which hopefully means Sunday mornings will be a little more peaceful at our house.

After I sewed the button on the back I let Rachel try it on. She decided it looks like dress Tiana would wear (from The Princess and the Frog). We put the soundtrack to that movie on and Rachel danced in the living room for quite some time, admiring her reflection in the glass of Grandma's cabinet.

We also found a winter hat for Rachel and a few more play dresses. Miriam wanted to look for some more play dresses, too, but we couldn't even get to the 2T table. Apparently everyone has a two-year-old these days. The table was packed with mothers and fathers rifling through clothes, trying to find something decent.

Andrew remarked that this clothing exchange is a sure sign of a tough economy.

I told him that we're lucky to live in such a time of plenty (ie. mass production) when there is so much cast-off clothing floating around, otherwise our girls would be wearing potato sack dresses. And our potato sacks are nothing to write home about these days—usually they're just plastic bags; mesh nets, if you're lucky. I suppose rice sometimes comes in a sack-type thing if you buy a big enough bag of the right brand.

So that's what they'd be running around in—woven plastic rice sacks. I would never get Rachel to emerge from her bedroom that way, I'm sure.

Fortunately we have the option of shopping for free and, for us, there's nothing better!

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