Let me preface this with a few things:
1. we are NOT the crazy people who camp out in 30 degree weather outside of Walmart, putting our lives on the line to get trampled for $6 off a flat screen TV.
2. I am 100% against this new trend of stores opening up ON Thanksgiving to get a 'jump start' on Black Friday sales. The only thing you're doing is ruining a holiday for 100 of your closest employees.
Side note: there was one year that Mr. KK decided he was going to do the real black Friday: get up early, stand in line in the cold – the whole nine yards – for a deal on a TV. He woke up at 4am, got dressed and headed out on his mission.
Ten minutes later he came back upstairs, put his pajamas back on and crawled back into bed.
"Car won't start."
Ah, the luck of the KK's.
I LOVE Christmas.
It's my favorite holiday.
And I like going out on Black Friday because this is the day when it feels super Christmas-y everywhere you go. People are buying presents, there are trees on car roofs and the Salvation Army
beggars people are out there ringing their bells with gusto. This is the day I start listening to Christmas music straight through until Christmas Day (this is a warning for anyone who drives in the car with me in the month of December).
And we have curated our own Black Friday tradition.
We do head out early – usually around 8am or 9am, coffee and tea in hand – to the Westfarms Mall. We find the perfect parking space in the garage outside of Nordstrom and we leave our coats in the car. I then proceed to shop completely for myself, because let's be real, there are very few gifts I buy for people at a mall. But 50% at Banana Republic until noon? Yes, please!
After Westfarms we head over to West Hartford to Crate and Barrel and then lunch at the Cheesecake Factory. We sit at the bar, have a drink or two, and enjoy a nice lunch that doesn't consist of turkey, mashed potatoes or stuffing.
Then we usually head home, light a fire, and lie down and watch TV and take naps.
And this year, just because we have Mr. Max, we weren't about to abandon our shopping tradition.
Black Friday 2.0:
First, we skipped the mall entirely (I just can't bring myself to take Max to a germy mall. Hole in the wall bar? Sure. Stinky mall? Pass.)
Max slept through Crate and Barrel (apparently he had no need to purchase housewares he'll only use one and then curse every time he opens a drawer or cabinet).
Next stop was Barnes and Noble where I picked out new books for Max (for someone who can't focus on pictures yet, this kid has SO MANY books), and where Max enjoyed an impromptu lunch.
After he drifted into a post-lunch nap, we headed across the street to the Cheesecake Factory for our lunch.
We parked our stroller among the sea of strollers near the entrance, traded our bar seats for a booth, limited ourselves to one drink each, and enjoyed a nice lunch that didn't consist of turkey, mashed potatoes or stuffing.
The we headed home, lit a fire, and watched Max nap.
There are some traditions you just can't break. You just have to modify them a little bit.
PS: We went into that kids' store Janie and Jack today. Beautiful clothing. But they have some nerve trying to pass off having 3 onesies and a cardigan for boys as a 'girls and boys store'. I think the store needs a new name that's less misleading. Something like, "Just Janie". Or "Jack Who?"