Ah yes, I am bringing up that time of the year once again. Stores are already in holiday mode. Decorations are out, music is piping out of speakers, sales are starting, and we are cruising the shops. I love buying gifts for people, especially when you feel you have found that ultimate gift you know a friend or family member will go crazy for, and especially too, if it happens to be “a gift that goes away.” Wink, wink. Remember that blog post? But this chat is not about what to buy for people. This discussion entails those pesky items that seem to jump right into our hands because we need them not only for our gift-recipient, but for ourselves as well. You know, the whole, “One for you and one for me” syndrome.
Let’s set the scene. We’re on a high, getting giddy thinking of how happy our kids, mom, bestie, insert name here, are going to be when they open this must have item. We are singing along to music, having a grand ole’ time and then even better, the sales person comes over to tell us the item is 25% off. Score! And heck, we think the item is so ridiculously awesome we could probably benefit from having one as well. Voila, we are now the casualty of an unplanned purchase. My case in point, Karlie and I were shopping on Sunday evening, not quite yet a holiday shop, but an outing just the same. So what did I come away with on this trip that was not in any way, shape, or form on my agenda to buy? Wait for it…boobie Vans!
Aren’t they fabulous! A reminder to all for self examinations.
I’ll explain. In true Smith kid fashion, Karlie had to go into the Vans store. As we perused, we noticed three different sets of sneakers that had topless ladies on them. At first we were puzzled, but as we looked closer, we noticed that one pair had ladies who were giving themselves self breast exams, another celebrated women’s bodies and there were some drawings of ladies with mastectomies with triumphant expressions. The last pair looked like they had drawings of “peeners” according to my daughter. We weren’t so down with them. A minimum of $200,000 was being donated by Vans to the Coppafeel organization in support of breast cancer awareness. While Karlie tried her choice on, I could not stop being drawn to these sneakers. I kept picking them up and looking at them until finally Karlie said, “Mom, if you like them that much, just try them on!” This is not something I normally do. You see, my feet are very oddly shaped and they are as wide as they are long. I can never walk into a store and just try on (Zappos is my best friend) so it’s not something I usually do. But this time I tried. Not only did these kicks made my heart sing, but guess what? They actually fit! I didn’t even debate it. I had to have them. My question to you is, was I a victim of the “one for me and one for you” syndrome?” Nope. I’ll tell you why and outline the criteria for a OFMOFY purchase.
First of all, you have to be able to afford it. If there is no money in the budget for this purchase, just put it down. Boobie shoes are not worth owing on my credit card. I could afford them, so I bought them.
Second checking point, do they make your heart sing? When the heart is trilling you just absolutely love the item, you can’t wait to wear/use it, and you can’t stop thinking about it, as in my case, when I could not move away from the rack. Haha, rack. This isn’t something that is just okay, nothing to get excited about. This is a purchase that will keep you glowing way after the 28 minute high that researchers say is the approximate amount of time that the retail therapy purchase thrill will last.
Third criteria, is this item part of a category or collection in which you already too many? This tends to happen with shoes, books, clothing, lotions, and candles. If you feel you already have a bounty in this category, put it back. If you have an overflow yet that heart is going a cappella, then think of one or two items you currently have in that collection that can be passed on. Make room for the new. In my case, I was never able to be a shoe horse because of my odd feet. I scooped these up.
P and I have to use these bad boys before I can buy my favorite scented lotions!
Playing off this idea, look at all the items you already have. Is there an abundance of something in your home you know you will be tempted by in the store? For me it can be lotions or facial products. I have been making sure to use up everything I already have, so if the OFYOFM syndrome hits, it will be an item I need anyway.
The fourth question you can ask yourself is, do I have a place for this or do I have a use for this? There have been so many times I’ve seen the loveliest tchotchkes that would look divine in my living room or family room. I never purchase them though, because I currently don’t have place for them. If I wanted to get rid of something, like mentioned above, well then that’s a different story. But don’t buy it if you don’t have a place or a use for it.
Yay for coupons! But don’t buy what you don’t need just because it’s on sale.
Lastly, don’t get sucked in to the sale promotions. You are not saving money if you are purchasing an item that you weren’t planning on getting. Twenty-five percent off of the $25 you shell out is still more than the zero dollars you were planning on spending.
Wow, this was quite the mouthful today, but it will seriously help you when you are out there in the height of shopping season. Think of the criteria each time you are tempted to purchase an item for yourself. It’s not a bad thing to treat yourself. Just make sure you have the money, space, and use for it, it makes your heart sing, and you can afford it. Get yourself something. Just don’t be a boobie about it.