I can hardly believe it but I’ve now owned my latest laptop — a Dell Inspiron — for nearly three years. When first purchased, it was all sparkly and new and fast and well, just about everything I wanted. It’s still pretty darn fast and the hard drive has gobs of space on it, but it’s starting to show its age with periodic crashes and freezes. And most annoying, the wifi routinely requires tinkering. And the stupid thing weighs a ton (well, not really, but it feels that way when stuffed in a bag or pack along with everything else I need to carry).
The Friday after Thanksgiving in the United States is termed Black Friday, and signals the start of the holiday shopping season. It’s become rather controversial the last few years as stores open earlier and earlier. This year, instead of beginning Black Friday sales at midnight, some stores opened on Thanksgiving evening.
My local online paper featured several stories about people who began camping out as early as Wednesday afternoon in front of Best Buy to be first in line for the sales. Just the thought of it made me cringe. Stand in line for concert tickets? Yes, I did that in my youth (and hope to never do so again). But camp for days to get a sale? No.
Thrift stores are the land of magical things. On any given day you can luck into such finds as an antique leather pouf from Turkey, sporting fringe and little bells and embroidered all over with camels, or vintage blue and white mixing bowls, or collectible porcelain. I even found a grotesque wallet once, made from the entire skin of a large bullfrog with a zipper in it’s stomach.
Once upon a time, in an economy much better than the one we have today, going out of business sales were a gleeful event for me. I would cheerfully scavenge through the picked over aisles looking for hidden treasures and incredible “steals”. I do my Christmas shopping all year long, so many of my finds were put carefully away to be lovingly wrapped in December. Oh, how thrilled I was to be able to provide gorgeous gifts at a discounted price. Of course this was back in the days when it seemed that most going out of business sales meant either the shop had been mismanaged or the owners were retiring. Most of the ones I shopped were due to the latter reason and so there was joy all around. They were happy to unload the unwanted merchandise, I was happy to snap it […]
Is it just me, or are outlet deals not as good as they used to be?
I went down to Niagara-on-the-Lake this weekend, to catch some Shaw Festival and outlet shopping. “My Fair Lady” wasn’t as good as I’d hoped, but then the Rex Harrison/Audrey Hepburn movie is so firmly engrained in my head that I’m afraid I’ll be hyper-critical for the rest of my days.
But I did hope to catch some good deals at the outlet mall on the Canadian side. I know the outlet malls on the US side are larger, but I seriously could not be bothered crossing in one day. (I also considered, but discounted, going to Borders.)
So I stayed in maple leaf land, and by and large I was a little let down. I managed to get a birthday present for my father at the Coach outlet, but only because it was a small item, and it […]
I’ve resisted for a number of years, but have finally realized it’s time to do it. Yes, I absolutely, positively must replace my old living room furniture.
My sofa and loveseat looked quite nice when I originally purchased them. But they’ve finally started to show their age. No matter how many new pillows I place on them, the basic furniture is just looking a bit too worn. I try to be frugal, so shelling out money for a new sofa hurts. But it’s long past time when a slipcover will do the trick.
Getting back to Canada in mid-January, after summer in the southern hemisphere, has its disadvantages, but there’s definitely one huge plus: Sales. Sales sales sales. And since all the stores will be trying to get rid of their winter merchandise, it’s the perfect time to shop for boots, right? […]
I love giving books for Christmas and birthdays, but for some people this is not feasible, as they don’t like reading or don’t like movies, or I just don’t know enough about their tastes to choose just the right gift for them. This leaves me with edibles (excellent gifts! as long as you’re sure about people’s tastes, and in this case, food allergies …), pretty pieces for decorations (excellent for those who like to decorate their houses – otherwise, not), vouchers and … cash. […]
Confession time: Sometimes, when I have to do some work I really dislike, I bribe myself with rewards. It’s not very grown-up in me, but what can I say? It often works. So when it’s time to weed the vegetable bed, or tidy my desk, I tell myself, if you finish that now, you may go to the cinema later, or order a CD online – whatever works. […]