Black Friday and Family

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Happy Thanksgiving from my little turkey!

Right this second, I am sitting in the backseat of my Mom’s SUV on the way to Houston for our annual Black Friday shopping trip. We’ve already hit up Target and Starbucks and I am SO pumped for a day full of shopping. It’s also Luna’s first experience, and while I’m excited to share this tradition with her, I have to also remind myself of what makes this “holiday”, as well as all the others, meaningful.

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While Black Friday is completely materialistic and probably part of the problem with Christmas becoming more and more about stuff, I can’t help but enjoy it. I love the tradition, the time with my Mom, sister, aunt, cousin and husband, the coffee, walking, Christmas music, crowds, list making and Mexican food lunch. Its more about the experience than the stuff, but we get a lot of stuff too. The problem is that Husband and I are hoping to teach Luna to appreciate the holidays for more than the gifts. So, how can I continue my love for Black Friday and also teach Luna to not be too materialistic?

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My best idea is to focus on giving. The holidays should be about giving. So each year we will make lists for people we love, and search for gifts to give. We will think about people who need some holiday cheer and shop for them too. If we find a gift we have to have then we will find something we already own to giveaway. We have too much stuff as it is, so I’m more than happy to give much of it away.

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When we aren’t giving, we will focus on family. We will take selfies with our Starbucks, eat together, help each other pick out gifts, make lots of memories and sing some Christmas carols off key.

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Mmmm first bite of meat!

I know, we will never give up Black Friday or shopping or caring about stuff, but I hope I can at least teach Luna that there’s so much more to the holiday season than the media and retail industry wants us to believe. I’m so thankful I have this little girl here to constantly remind me to be a better person.

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What do you think of Black Friday? Yay or nay? How do you shop for the holidags?

Happy Black Friday and Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

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Cheers!

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Black Weekend

It is my family’s tradition to shop on Black Friday every year since I can remember. There is a group of women in my family who, for many many years now, have scoured over the ads after Thanksgiving dinner, made lists, gone to bed early, woke up before the crack of dawn, picked up a yummy fast food breakfast and drove out to the stores as they open for a FULL day of shopping and quality girl time.

I LOVE this tradition, not even for the deals. Don’t get me wrong, the deals are awesome and I feel awesome saving money from store to store…and even more awesome toting my many bags of presenst around, but the real fun is in the details. I hate waking up early, but not on Black Friday. It is same as waking up early on Christmas morning, or the morning of a family vacation. Everyone is full of excitement and wonder.

We bundle up in the car, jam the Christmas music and eat hashbrowns and sausage biscuits in the car. We devise plans, discuss gift ideas and gossip about family news that was revealed at Thanksgiving dinner. We bond over Starbucks, take pics throughout our day and complain about our feet killing us. It simply doesn’t get better.

I LOVE it all, but, and this is a big but…I HATE Black Friday that is actually on Thursday and disguised as Black Friday. I know lots of you shop on Thursday and that’s cool…we all have our own traditions, but I just cannot get into this new trend.

For one…it’s not actually Friday…so please stop calling it that. It’s Thursday, as in Thanksgiving Day, as in most of us are still eating, or recovering from eating. I don’t want to rush through dinner, skip relaxing with the family, miss out on Thanksgiving night movies or “Just Dance” tournaments. Those traditions are precious to me too, and I can’t help but think about the people working who are missing out on their precious moments. I do not like it, so I do not do it, and if I miss out on saving 25% off something cool then so be it. We all have too much stuff anyways.

Also, since being with Husband, Black Friday traditions have changed a bit because we spend every other year with his family. Husband is amazing and will shop with me whenever and wherever I want on the years away from my family. We even call our Texas family and talk about the deals we found, the long lines and how every single store won’t stop playing “Last Christmas, I Gave You My Heart”…it’s a very good every-other-year tradition.

This year is a special case scenario. Neither I nor my sister went home for Thanksgiving…our typical shopping crew was all out-of-wack and it seemed like not one of us were going to continue our very long-standing tradition. Something had to be done. So when my Mom informed me that she was going to Dallas to see my sister for the weekend, I informed her that I would be flying down and joining them. It just isn’t right for all of us to be apart and for no one to do Black Friday.

We couldn’t actually all get to Dallas until Friday night, so we went Black Saturday and Black Sunday shopping instead. We still got up early, ate fast food, listened to Christmas music, shopped all day, complained about walking all day and carrying a million bags and had the best day together. I think it was my greatest idea ever, and I think my Grandma would be happy to see us keeping the tradition of spending an awesome day together alive.

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So happy to get some Tex Mex!
So happy to get some Tex Mex!

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This year we had the added bonus of shopping with my favorite little man, my nephew! He was such a trooper. He shopped ALL day and never threw a fit…which is better than we can say for ourselves.

mom and sis

enjoying "Black Weekend" lunch together
enjoying “Black Weekend” lunch together

I also had my first Black Friday shopping-while-7-months-pregnant experience. So, there was lots of baby clothes shopping and lots of trying on clothes that do not zip-up shopping.

so sweet
so sweet
won't quite fit over my belly
won’t quite fit over my belly

Anyone else have special Christmas shopping traditions?

Cheers!