"That's an odd time," she said.
Sometimes 3:30 feels too early and 4:00 feels too late, and Friday was one of those times.
Before we left, my mom said, "Okay girls, have fun. And be careful, people get crazy on Black Friday. If you see someone with road rage in the parking lot, just let them have the good spot. It's not worth it."
"Are you worried we're going to shoot someone?" Emily asked, as if we were packing heat and some pent-up aggression on our retail quest.
"No, it's not so much the shooting I'm worried about," mom said, "It's the getting shot."
So on that happy note, we set out. Obviously, our first stop was the motherland, Dunkin' Donuts.
From there, we hit Target, A.C. Moore, Primark, and the thrift shop. We swung into Dollar Tree for some wrapping supplies, and as we walked in Emily broke the news to me that Dunkin' Donuts is going to start selling bottled beverages. I got so excited that I waved my arms around wildly and accidentally pulled my hoop earring out, and then we had to look for it on the pavement in front of the Dollar Tree.
Luckily that was the most dangerous parking lot experience we had all night.
When we came out of the Dollar Tree and put the bags and wrapping paper in the trunk, we realized that the trunk was half full, but we had not yet purchased one gift.
But what we did purchase were plenty of gifts for ourselves, including a book called "A Hell of a Place to Lose a Cow, an American Hitchhiking Odyssey."
That particular purchase was Emily's and it cost her a quarter. I'm sure it'll be worth every penny.
All 25 of them.
The lack of gifts may have had something to do with the fact that every time I saw something I liked, I'd say to Em, "This is so cute/useful/clever/fun," and she would nod along in complete agreement and validation. And then I'd ask, "Can you think of anyone who'd like it?" And she would say, "Nope."
She's quite a companion.
We decided to refuel at Chick-fil-a, and then we stopped at Gander Mountain to pick up a gift for my father in law. I texted Matt to ask what size shirt to get, and he responded with the answer and a casual request to ask if I could pick up some ammo that was on sale. It was just like the way some people might say "oh while you're at the store, could you grab some milk?" What ensued was me searching, quite unsuccessfully, on my own, finally asking an employee, and the employee leading me to a glass case of guns and unlocking it.
"I think he just wanted bullets," I told her. Evidently I didn't use the correct vocabulary in my initial questioning, but once I finally got what Matt needed, I'll tell you what vocabulary I did know.
YOU OWE ME, PAL.
From there we went to Kohl's, where we basically hit the mother-lode. They were having great sales and had great stuff, and we filled a cart to overflowing. We were there for quite a while, and the later it got the more delirious
I thought it was hilarious. I can't say the same for Emily.
Our final stop of the evening was Walmart, and by the time we got back home, our feet were tired, the trunk was full, and our wallets were empty.
But our lists were almost completely crossed off, our Christmas spirit had arrived, and I think we've started a new tradition.