Black Friday Anyone? I indulged – with a side of guilt…

Have you ever participated in the craziness that is Black Friday? It’s that day when people come out of their turkey (or tofu-key)-induced comas just in time to snatch up phenomenally low prices on hot ticket items like TVs, laptops, and the latest “hot toy.” It’s basically all that is wrong with the holidays summed up in the early hours of the morning. Crazy, over-caffeinated people  literally fighting over video games and trampling each other to get to the bargains first (so not eco-chic).

Well, I’m embarrassed to say that I did shop Black Friday this year for the first time. Why did I get up at 4 AM after promising myself that I wouldn’t? For the experience? I really have no idea. I read a very moving email from Annie over at the The Story of Stuff about staying in on Black Friday and enjoying your family instead. I was obviously not going Black Friday shopping. I mean, I’m developing a blog all about saving the earth!  – until my sig other’s sister-in-law pointed out that Target is just up the road. And that the Wii Fit Plus that I had promised my step-mom for Christmas was on sale. And that it would be fun. Oh my.

So there I was – 4 AM. Freezing rain. A fight in the store. A Starbucks Peppermint Mocha in hand. And that about sums it up. And I got deals. Oh, did I get deals. And it was fun and exciting! Especially for my debit card. I did manage to scoop the promised Wii, some video games, and our brand new artificial Christmas tree that we have promised to use for AT LEAST 10 years. Then we went to Kohls and Wal-Mart. Oh my. All said and done I came home with some clothing, a spice rack, the new Scene It Twilight game, a few picture frames, a 40 piece Rubbermade container set, some presents for the kids in my life, etc etc etc.

Was it fun? Sure! Would I do it again? Maybe – for the right items. Indoor Worm Composter anyone? But I can barely remember half of the items that I purchased for those fabulously low, low prices. And then the guilt set in. I remembered my excitement about gifting “green” presents and buying local…I was so excited to check out Downtown Kent’s local shops. What had I done? I was kind of disappointed in myself…it was too easy to let my beliefs slip away into the cycle of consumerism.

So now I’m returning items. Using gas to drive back to stores to return gifts that would have been thrown away or overlooked within a few weeks or months after the holidays. Oh the shame!

So here is my gifting guide:

  • 3 kiddos (1 girl of 5, 1 girl of 6, 1 boy of 8)
  • 1 17-year-old baby brother
    • Already purchased a used Xbox game and looking for a few others on his list
  • 1 care package to my brother who will be spending the holidays overseas
    • He only requested 5 Hour Powers, an OSU flag, and razor blades…how can I say no?
  • 2 $50 gifts for our family secret santa (both men in their twenties)
    • TBD
  • 1 step-mom
    • The infamous Black Friday Wii, a super cute scarf that I knitted, some local wine, and Fiestaware purchased at the Tent Sale
  • 1 sig other’s mom
    • Reebok Easy Tones (as requested)
  • 2 holiday/birthday presents for my little sisters
    • Already bought one a fabulous fedora and I’m hoping to find a few more unique items at Rehab Vintage and other shops in Kent and Akron
  • and a few fabulous and lucky friends
    • Looking for inspiration in local shops!

I think it would be fabulous to give repurposed and upcycled gifts (like the video games)…super unique gifts and the search is always fun! I’m hoping to have a few items jump up and down and scream “Katie” or “Samantha” and then I will scoop them up and gift them!

Watch out for some gifting guides this week! I’m excited to share my finds and creations as I hunt for the perfect gifts for my loved ones!

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