While Hubs started Christmas shopping sometime in August. He loves sales, deals, offers, and points. It’s not about getting the thing, but how little he can pay for it. This is his game, and most days he wins.
This is tough for me. He purchases everything for himself, and after we give him our lists, purchases everything for us as well. I always want to find something to surprise him, and it’s nearly impossible. I was so amped thinking I had found the perfect surprise for him – the Coach Beard from Ted Lasso Funko figurine. It’s his favorite character and not available everywhere. I had it shipped to the house and hid it in the studio. Recently, we sorted through everything he had already purchased for the holiday, and I saw a Coach Beard in a box.
“What is that?”
“Coach Beard! I bought it for myself!” he said. “I showed this to you already.”
According to him, he showed both me and Behr weeks ago. I don’t think he did. Neither does Behr, who was the one who showed me where to order Coach Beard.
But it is possible he told me and I wasn’t paying attention, because I’ve been focused on teaching and other projects. Now that my classes have all been graded and uploaded, I finally have time to wrap my head around what I would like and what I might consider buying for others.
This type of research takes time. If I am even daring to consider something for Hubs, I have to not only conceptualize something he would enjoy that he has not already purchased for himself, but I have to research things like Wirecutter to make sure I am getting a good brand, the reviews to make sure it doesn’t malfunction immediately, and then peruse the different shopping portals to get the best deal. He will ask me how much I paid for it and then tell me if he’d known, he had a coupon/rebate/promo code I could have used. It’s exhausting. This year he told me not to bother trying to surprise him. All he really wants is a Playstation gift card.
I’m not saying I am any easier to buy for. Sometimes, I will get caught up in an idea of something that I want more than the actual item. It’s always just a piece to a larger puzzle – a look, a costume, a project, an ensemble.
I’ll get caught up in the idea that I will – for example – bake bread, so I will research the best of what I need to accomplish that and start placing those things on a wishlist.
Or, I will start planning out my look for the next few months – much like my Trent Crimm inspiration board – and I’ll start searching for the pieces necessary to create that look.
And sometimes I’ll just fall in love with a particular category of a type of item and I will fill up a moodboard with a selection of them.
Here is a selection of a few little things I am currently loving this year:
The dramatic coat – I have a wonderful all weather London Fog trench coat that has served me well for several years now. I can dress it up with a scarf or dress it down with some Adidas. But I was watching TV and saw a woman enter the frame in a belted wool coat with a dramatic collar and thought, That is a look. Macy’s is a great place to find a dramatic coat, but I also found several at Banana Republic Factory.
A thinking hoodie – contrary to other writers, I don’t love working in my pajamas. I will, but it’s not my favorite. I like working in something that if I needed to rush out and pick up one of my kids, run out to grab some groceries, or pinwheel into downward dog, I could without a costume change. There’s also something about lifting a hoodie over my head that indicates that I am in a more focused mode.Once I joked with a friend that I wanted a sponsorship deal with Old Navy, like I was a NASCAR driver, because all my selfies had me in one of their inexpensive logo hoodies. That sponsorship never came, and I diversified my hoodies from Nike and Lululemon.
Scarves – the beauty of a capsule collection is while my foundational garments are basic, my accessories do not have to be. I love adding a colorful silk (ish) scarf to an all black ensemble. I also like these scarves because I can tie them in different ways to make them look fresh and new. I can usually find some great ones at Nordstrom Rack. I have also picked out several from a website called Wolf and Badger.
Dumb Watches – I got an Apple watch for Mother’s Day this year and I’m already over it. The whole reason I got my first smart watch – it was a Garmin – because I was running more and needed to keep track of my stats. My knee won’t let me run anymore, so I was keeping it because I was getting notification about the Braves games. I thought I was upgrading to the Apple Watch, but it was not an upgrade. I can’t wear it in the shower. I have to charge it every night. And sometimes it doesn’t give me any notifications at all. And if I bump it against something, all these apps open.
So what do I really want out of a watch? I don’t want all this stuff. Because it never fails that notifications come in at the worst time – when I’m driving, when I’m napping, when my hands are covered in bread dough, when I’m trying to exercise.
And since I cannot afford a Rolex, I love this Timex that’s just a watch. It just tells time. And it’s doing so well, it’s currently out of stock. I’m on a waitlist.
Napkin rings – I love cloth napkins. Like, for everyday use. Hubs would be content with paper towels, but I wanted something I didn’t have to throw away after every meal. Toss them in the wash. I don’t own napkin rings because they’re usually heavy and don’t really match my style. However, I was on the Crate and Barrel website looking for a teapot, and ended up seeing these lovely wooden linked napkin rings, which I’m thinking will look perfect for Thanksgiving and other more elevated dining experiences.
Leather flats – While fully committed to my boots, I am also someone who needs some flat shoes for tromping around in when Hubs drags me out of my cozy writer studio for vacations. As a family, we have decided we prefer marching around cities and seeing the sights. This means, I need flats that pack easy and can go with most of my outfits: can be dressed up and down, and have arch support. I love my Birkenstock Arizona slides. But I came across a pair of leather VIBAe mules that look perfect for travel.
Plants – I love little plants. I am not elevated to the level of “plant lady”, yet. And while I wait for Bloomscape to remove me from the Tough Stuff Collection waitlist, The Sill has a monthly subscription service where they send you a tiny plant every month. It’s incredibly tempting.
I keep up with things that interest me on Pinterest. Follow my Currently Loving board for things that pop up on my radar.
Read Books. Wear Boots.