Black Friday shopping with your children is just irresponsible.
I mean, who puts their kids to bed at their normal time with the intention of waking them up at some unGodly hour to battle riotous crowds for a measly $100 savings on an XBox 360 with Kinect? Or some school uniforms for 75% off? Or a fake Christmas tree for 50% off?
Yep, that’s right. I am a psychotic Black Friday shopper. I take my kids out in their pajamas, and we go shopping. Last year I got ALL of my Christmas shopping for the kids done at Toys R Us and Target for 65% off of retail. That means I saved more than I spent. SCORE!
Until this year, I was also a seasoned doorbuster. I’m not going to lie, I was a little peeved that stores opened at midnight and 2am this year. I can do 5am. I can do 4am even. I cannot, however; do midnight. My kids need a LITTLE sleep, and I need to be able to get breakfast and hot chocolate for them afterwards, which isn’t feasible when doorbusting begins at midnight.
“Why can’t the hubby watch them while you go out?” GOOD question. When the hubby gets home after midnight and leaves again to be back at work at 6am, that’s not really an option, but thanks for asking!
So in the stores’ effort to make a little more money, my traditional Black Friday plans sorta went out the proverbial window, but we made it work anyways.
Thursday night, Madilyn was coughing for a great deal of the night so I decided to let her get an extra hour of sleep. I got her out of bed in her pajamas and took her to the car seat at 6am. Once she was in the car, I woke Styles up and sent him to the car. Then I put Grady in his car seat and out the door we went.
When Black Friday shopping, it is wise to check the ads from every store you can think of to see what they are going to have for sale. Last year I saw things at stores that I didn’t even realize that the kids might enjoy for Christmas. This year, I was prepared. I heard that Sears was going to have some great sales on clothing, electronics, and exercise equipment, among other things.
But WalMart was opening early and we wanted an XBox for Styles too, for $100 off!
Old Navy was going to have long sleeved uniform shirts for $5.
Target was going to have artificial Christmas trees for $20.
So based on the sales, the proximity to our home, and the level of interest in what was being offered at each store, I planned our route.
We would hit up Walmart (to pick up the XBox from my dear friend who was doorbusting and got the XBox FOR us so that I wouldn’t have to do it), then to Murphy USA to get gas, then to Sears for clothes for Madilyn and some exercise equipment for me, then Old Navy for uniforms for Styles, Land’s end for some winter gear for me, and finally Target for an artificial tree for Styles’ classroom, (I know, I’m a rockin’ Room Rep.) Check out our adventures here.
We got a later start than I had planned because of Madilyn being sick (Gosh, I’m a terrible mom), but I knew based off of my Black Friday shopping in years past, that our list didn’t include any “NEED NOW” items so I wasn’t too worried.
We picked up our XBox then got gas at Murphy USA (where I am the mayor), and headed into Savannah to go to Sears.
When we got there, we immediately headed to the exercise equipment. We’re on a pretty tight budget this year so I wasn’t going to get an elliptical like I wanted, but I noticed that Sears had a mini trampoline on sale for $25, down from $50. I wanted to jump on it (literally and figuratively) before they were gone, despite its size and heft. There was ONE LEFT! Talk about “it was meant to be”! I also grabbed a fitness ball because my core needs some serious work, and we headed upstairs to the kid’s area.
The Sears Black Friday circular also had a Vivitar digital camera for $20 and I wanted to get one for Styles but (naturally) they were gone within minutes of their 4am opening. BUMMER. We made it around to housewares and I got some 8×10 white wooden frames for $2.39 each for our master bedroom which was a HUGE savings from their original price tag. Between housewares and children’s clothing, we saw a Perry the Platypus hat for $8, down from $20. Our entire family is obsessed with Phineas and Ferb so I couldn’t pass it up. When we finally made it around to the kid’s clothing, I found some super cute embellished shirts for Madilyn for $5. She has plenty of pants but needed long sleeved shirts so I got 3. On our second lap upstairs, I saw some Hanes women’s underwear for $8 which was down from the original $16 price tag. Being that I’m losing weight, I need new panties so I Grabbed a pack of those and a pack of socks for the sockless-wonder that is my youngest son, and we went in search of a short line in which to check out.
They were all relatively long so we chose one and waited it out. The line moved so much quicker than I thought it would and the girl who checked me out was super sweet, so it made it worth my wait.
We were in and out of there in no time, and headed to Old Navy to get some long sleeved white shirts for Styles’ school uniforms.
At Old Navy, we picked up 3 white shirts, and a long sleeved Perry the Platypus shirt so that Styles could change out of his pajama shirt (and because it matched his new hat), and off we went to get breakfast.
It is tradition to get hot chocolate for the kids from Starbucks because we usually go to Target first where there is a Starbucks. We were on the opposite side of the mall from Starbucks so I got them Cinnabon sticks and myself a black coffee instead. They were ever grateful and scarfed them down like they were Black Friday doorbuster deals.
Once I changed Grady’s diaper and let Madilyn use the restroom, we walked back through Sears where I picked up my $15 ivory fleece from Land’s End. HOLY GOOD DEAL!
There we met some women who had been out since 10pm the previous night. It was 8am Friday morning. They got everything on their list including some huge electronic purchases. They said that they go out every year, and each year they say they’ll never do it again, but each year they do. They were fun to talk to. I aspire to be just like them
I didn’t want to be long in Target because I knew exactly what I wanted. I just hoped because it was so late in the morning (8am is super late on Black Friday), that they would still have my stuff.
THEY DID. I picked up an artificial Christmas tree for Styles’ classroom and a shirt for me, and we got home before 10am.
I got everything that I wanted (except that darn Vivitar camera but I figured it would be gone), and I saved 59% which means that again, I saved more than I spent.
So for those of you who are Black Friday naysayers, you enjoy your full priced Christmas gifts and your sleep while I spend less money and shop smart while making some really fun annual memories with my kids.
DISCLAIMER: This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias.. All opinions, experiences and Perry the platypuses atr my very own.