Winter, Christmas, good deals, Shopacalypse…

I will mark this date on my calendar and watch my PG&E bill – my heater is officially ON. I woke to that rumbling sound this morning, having turned on the thermostat yesterday. I had gone out on the patio about 7:30 yesterday morning to find the mercury hanging at 39 degrees. Today when I took the dogs out for a drink and a pee, the old Kist! thermometer was registering 32. I hadn’t really needed to look at it – the air was burning my face and the concrete was coming right through the bottoms of my slippers. 

I’m getting up a half hour later now, saves 15 hours a month in PG&E. I set it for 62 during the day, once it gets warmed up in here it hardly runs, unless somebody opens the front door, which is right below the thermostat. 

I tell you what, a good pair of slippers to wear inside your house is going to save you some money, especially if you add a pair of scrunchee socks. Rite Aid has cheap slippers, $20 or less, and a pair usually lasts me a couple of winters. I finally convinced my husband and kids to wear them – they had been wearing multiple pairs of socks.

Cold feet make a person miserable, they don’t even realize it. As soon as they get their feet in a pair of good slippers you see the relief stretching out across their face.  And, it ends that constant compulsion to check the thermostat.

Don’t forget layers – it’s still kind of warm during the day, I’ve even been opening my sunny windows to get that nice afternoon air. It’s good to have clothes you can peel off and hang over the back of your chair, put them back on again when that chill breeze comes on about 4pm. 

I had noticed our layers were getting pretty shabby, elastic giving way, tiny tears developing, sagging and stained in embarrassing places – so I went through all our drawers and closets and threw stuff away without mercy. It’s hard, I get attached to a favorite shirt, somebody else usually has to tell me – Yecchhh! Get rid of that old thing!   My mom used to wait for a weekend when we were out with friends and go through our drawers for us – “MOM! not my favorite cut-offs!”  – then take us to the mall to get over it. 

So, the other day, like spawning salmon, we headed for Chico Mall, to Sears, to pick up some last minute presents for G’pa and look for warm clothes. Sears did not disappoint. They’re funny – they have two men’s departments, right next to each other – one for the young, trendy, and lackadaisical spenders, the other for the bargain hunter. Yes, they still have those grooooovy fleece pull-overs, for 9 bucks. You heard me, in like 10 different color combos, for every member of your family. I would have bought one, but my husband gets tired of looking at me in men’s clothes. Off to the womens’ department. Yes, they had all kinds of warm stuff, cheap underwear, snuggee hats, scarves and gloves. 

But here’s where I really scored. 

I can never throw away these fancy shopping bags. This one is now sitting in a cabinet, full of colored paper and other art supplies.

I can never throw away these fancy shopping bags. This one is now sitting in a cabinet, full of colored paper and other art supplies.

I should have asked her name, she was so nice, but I will tell you, the lady at iCandy Couture was having a regular garage sale. She’s nervous about getting her new stuff in there for Christmas, so she’s got all these beautiful swishy cotton shirts and, what I would call “yoga wear,” for iCheap.   It’s the perfect stuff to wear under your heavy winter sweaters and jeans. She’d just had a sale the previous weekend, and apologized for not having more stuff. It was difficult finding my size – I always seem to be following a pack of women my exact size. But I managed to buy 5 of the neatest little candy-colored shirts for $15. What caught my eye to begin with – she had a rack of teeny weeny bikinis for 5 bucks hanging in the doorway.  I can’t remember what I saw first, the groovin’ bikinis or the $5 sign.

Think ahead people, I don’t care how cold and wet it is now, in five or six months we’re going to be toasting away again, and I’m going to be ready with my $5 bikini. 

Here I’ll thank my girlfriends Debbie Presson and Dani Brinkley for helping me lose all that weight – I was able to squeeze myself into the last size Small.  I would have bought two but there was only one small left.

Everywhere we went we scored good deals, we’re done with our Christmas shopping, having done most of it online. I’m glad we went to the mall last week – everybody was gearing up for Black Friday. The mall has asked vendors to be open at 6pm Thanksgiving evening. I don’t need to be rubbing elbows with the kind of people that get on their ugly and go out shopping after Thanksgiving dinner.

Watch this movie sometime:









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