Monday, February 8, 2010

The Dollar Store is the Lost Mecca of Craft Supplies

I don't go to the dollar store often. Not because I'm too sophisticated for it, I have absolutely no shame in soliciting shopping venues with cheap goods: the thrift store, yard sales, swap meets. In fact, I'm not sure why I don't go to the Dollar Tree more often...when I do, it's mostly to buy small toys for the kids to use as incentives or stocking stuffers. Little did I know that somewhere between the aisle with the $1 feminine douche kits and the row with party favors there were mountains of crafty goodness waiting to be discovered by me.

Today I spent an hour and a half at my local shop, with all three kids in tow of course. That in itself is an experience, I find myself saying things like "no, we don't need 7 flashlights" and "get that glass moose off of your head and put it back on the shelf!". Originally, I was stopping by to pick up some picture frames to frame some of the felt art projects I've been working on, but I was in for a surprise when I visited the craft sections. I turned into the first craft supply aisle and found shelves full of pens, packs of Sharpies (Sharpies! For $1!), markers, paints, stamp pads and stamps, and much more. My kids already have a decent amount of art supplies, but something came over me, and I felt as if I were possessed as I started tossing a pack of everything into the cart.

Next, I found the section filled with decorative paper, stickers, rub-ons, and other assorted scrapbooking supplies. I don't actually do a whole lot of scrapbooking (though I always feel like I should be doing it, and want to), but I figured I could use the pretty paper for other projects. The next aisle over was filled with silk flowers and leaves, picture frames, wire, beads, and buttons. The only thing that could have made the selection even more orgasmic was if they had fabric.

As I waited in the checkout line, my two year old son, Hayden, opened a bottle of kids body wash and poured it all over his hands and my jacket. I grabbed my other son's Spiderman winter hat off of his head and wiped up the mess the best I could. Then I nonchalantly began weeding out things from my cart and into a basket under the counter that I could live without...the panic of realizing I was about to drastically overspend had suddenly hit me full force. The checkout employee finished scanning my items, and she didn't say the total out loud (nor could I see it on the old register), probably because she knew if she did I would run away screaming.

When I opened my pocketbook to find my debit card, I quickly discovered that it was missing. And I immediately remembered that I had left it in my wool coat that I was wearing yesterday. I asked the woman if she would hold my cart as I ran home to grab the card, and she agreed. By the time I got everybody into the car and enjoyed the harmonious sounds of screaming all of the way home, I knew I wasn't going to go back. Not today, at least. It's probably for the best, I had to have had at least 70 items in my cart.


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