Monday, October 22, 2007

The get-rich-not-so-quick plan

Yes, if I didn’t have kids I’d be a bazillionaire. Well, not quite. But I’d sure own more pairs of shoes! In desperation to get out of the house one more time without having to bundle everyone up in coats the kids and I went to Babies R Us to buy diapers. Exciting, no? Actually, there is an element of excitement for me: my husband takes my car to work most days because his car is a gas-guzzler, so most days I find myself stranded at home.

After I looked at the newspaper this morning and the flat, yellow sun peeked out at me from behind a fake, flat cloud with a declaration that the day would be a warm seventy-seven degrees I decided that I needed to have my car for the day. I hoped against hope that one of my friends would be available on short notice, but everyone had appointments, or previous engagements, or had to work. Thus the plan to venture out to buy diapers was formulated.

So there we were, my son sitting in the front of the cart, my daughter snuggled up in her carrier stowed away in the basket, two boxes of diapers- one for each child- stuffed on the metal rack beneath the cart, on our way to select the baby’s first boxes of cereal. We decided on one box each of rice and oatmeal. Okay, on to bedding. The kids needed more sheets, and lucky me!, the Gerber sheets were on sale! Before selecting the sale item I looked around to see if I could purchase sheets made in the good old US of A. Not so much. My options were India, China and Pakistan. I opted for the on-sale made in India sheets. At the register I handed the lady the two boxes of cereal, two fitted sheets, and hoisted the two boxes of diapers onto the counter before surrendering my coupons. (On a side note- I have found Babies R Us to be the best place to buy diapers because they have fantastic coupons every couple of months). The good news: I saved $17.80 between the sale and my coupons. The bad news: my total still came to $76.74.

But wait, we’re not done yet! My son still needs shoes. Next stop: Payless Shoesource. It’s loads of fun to buckle everyone back into the car just to drive across the street. This time the baby went into the stroller and my son got to wear his “backpack.” Really it’s a leash. It’s new. My husband hates it. But my son gets to look like he’s piggybacking a monkey around while I don’t have to be afraid that he will try to run into the street to play with the life-size fire engine. The benefits far outweigh the negatives. Case closed. We just won’t utilize the monkey when we are out with daddy.

After perusing through the Christmas trees in the department store we made our way out into the mall to the shoe store. The monkey came in handy here because the little man kept attempting to run back to Christmas tree land. Once his shoe size was determined by the shoe-sizer thingy we had to select two pair of shoes for him because with sales these days you have to spend money to save money. Go figure. The good news: I saved $7.00 between the sale and a coupon. The semi-bad news: I still spent $20.99.

To recap, the day’s total came to $97.73 for diapers the kids will poop in and shoes they will grow out of in no time at all. I’m dreading the snow boot shopping. I peeked at a tag while at Payless; I’ll need to have my head examined if I acquiesce to spend $29.99 on a pair of kids’ boots. I don’t even spend that much on shoes for myself. And I stopped growing out of my shoes years ago.

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