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2005-07-20 - 2:39 p.m.

Enjoyed a morning of shoe shopping at TARGET where many are on sale 50- 75% off!

Its been literally YEARS since I have bought myself a pair of shoes! WHY?
a. I never think about them
b. My sister in law is a SHOEAHOLIC who feels BETTER about getting her FIX by the justification that she has handed down her OLD shoes to me.
c. Not working, not socializing a ton- So no need or desire for other than what I have had!

So despite not having personally gone SHOE shopping for years, I was getting by without much THOUGHT of shoes at all. I just haven't had any shoe crisis in my life! So when I was dressing for the TRIAL a few weeks back I became aware that I hadn't any NICE dress shoes! The ones I have are WINTER shoes, so I was fine then, but I realized that all the nice SUMMER shoes handed down had been passed on to KATERINA. (They actually fit her better than me! She now has a larger foot than me and I thought she also might care more about being stylish- so all her Aunties COOL shoes for summer went to her!)

Actually my sister in law is also a whole size LARGER than me- so it was time to get nice shoes THAT FIT! I hope Katerina's feet don't KEEP growing as she is now the EXACT size of her hip aunt!

I also have been scoping out jobs here in NY. I constantly do this to see if something turns up that would make it worth my while to stop being the stay at home mom. At this point I have to balance ALL the interests of the whole family, with my personal desires and interests, and keep that option of going to work open if something does turn up that would be good for us all. If I work then I have my own income which had tremendous benefits regarding my personal FREEDOM, but also drawbacks that have in the past not made it worthwhile unless I could find a job at a certain income. But I want to have the ATTIRE- including SHOES ready JUST IN CASE I should come across a job of interest.

I really am akin to most men. I have the two pair of shoes I wear. My inclination would be to wear them until they are falling apart by the threads and only then go out shopping for another pair of shoes!

I had (BEFORE TODAY) a pair of white KED LIKE leather sneakers, hand me down's from my sis-in-law, that I wear often (even with dresses to church on Sunday as I swear they look fine with a casual dress!), one pair of leather NINE WEST brown shoes that my sister in law insisted on buying for me as a Christmas gift maybe four years ago (when I think she was EMBARASSED to be seen in public with such an un-hip chick) ... and a few other things RARELY worn. These include a $3.00 pair of men's black Italian Leather found at the SALVATION ARMY which I LOVED and used to wear often but they are kind of cruddy now as I made the mistake of mucking around on the farm in them rather than my boots, a nice winter black swede short boot, and a brown swede pair of comfortable casual shoes, a pair of WINTER HIKING BOOTS from REI which I wore back in single days when I had time to REALLY go hiking on occassion, and a LOVELY pair of off white Maryjanes which I wore for my wedding.

To top it off, those brown leather nine west, which are VERY COMFORTABLE and I bought at the NINE WEST OUTLET in Leesburg which my shoe addicted sis-in-law worked at in an ill fated attempt to earn extra income during the Christmas season some years ago, just happen to also BOTH BE A DIFFERENT COLOR!! YES THIS IS NO LIE!! I was HYSTERICAL when after wearing them for about a year my good friend GAIL pointed out I had on two different shoes! The color difference is very subtle-- but if you look carefully YOU CAN TELL. Most people really are not that detail oriented! The light in the store clearly wasn't that bright as I, my sister in law and the sales clerk NEVER NOTICED! BUT under a BRIGHT white light you can then see one shoe is a slightly lighter hue than the other. My friend GAIL was so kind to tell me as if she hadn't I likely would never have noticed. SHE IS VERY DETAIL ORIENTED and if she was as morified to be seen in public with such a NON HIP shoe clueless gal as my sister in law, she did a better job of hiding her embarassment! (I continued to wear those non matching shoes almost all the time!)

So I laughed when I came across THESE at 50% off! I thought they'd look stupid on my extra wide feet, and in fact AM NOT crazy about how they LOOK with those large bunyon type EEE of mine at the balls of my feet - but after walking in them, I determined that THEY ARE VERY COMFORTABLE and I indeed could FORGET that I am wearing a HEEL. I also thought it would be WISE to defer to SHOE EXPERTS for opinions of worthy shoes to buy rather than my fashion compromised self. I recalled a friend M's web site entry of her new pair and subsequent comments on her blog of others who LOVE THESE SHOES!

So I DID IT! I bought those-- and they are ACTUALLY my size! And they actually BOTH match!

I also bought:
YES THEY ARE CORAL! A LOVELY Color that just happened to match the very sixties striped Tank I am wearing today. They should also match my very favorite Sunday Eddie Bauer dress that has a coral floral pattern in it. (MY fav as it requires NO IRONING!) Hey- since going for shoes I decided to go for STYLE for a change! (OK--- I KNOW SYLE IS NOT TO BE DETERMINED BY WHAT IS ON CLEARANCE.... well.... in my defense THERE WERE TONS OF OPTIONS ON CLEARANCE TODAY!! I REALLY DID MAKE CHOICES USING CRITERION OTHER THAN PRICE) These Coral Sandels are my FAVORITE buy today. I am wearing them now- which says alot since BAREFOOT is my typical choice when home!

I couldn't resist these because they actually LOOKED great over my wide feet and were only $4.24!!
Not that I get to go out anywhere fancy EVER these days... but when the opportunity arises I will be prepared!

And finally these, the Practical purchase which will replace the oversized sneaks that I have been wearing with everything:

And I can match Katerina (sort of) who has a pair of these from a few summers ago handed down to her (except hers are TAN on the base with a black fabric top).

I went in with a $45 budget for myself for shoes. I came out with four pair for $34.68 plus tax!

Gee that was fun.... I have greater apprechiation and understanding of most women's love of shopping. IS IT ALWAYS THIS MUCH FUN?

I had a blast doing that for myself EVEN THOUGH Raitlin TOOK OFF and got lost! YES she thought she was funny, and there I was shoeless, trying something on in my socks while her sisters reported "She's STILL running!"

So we had a break during which I scoped out for her and she was nowhere to be found. I didn't waste much time looking but headed right to the FRONT of the store WHERE THE EXIT is (just in case she's try to LEAVE to find the car or something...) I sent SADIE into the Ladies room while I stood outside of it watching the store Entrance/Exits. She HAS run off in stores before - but usually it's a bee line to the bathroom and we run after her all the way there. She's really a trip! But this time she wasn't in the bathroom, so I went up to the security guy and told him "I LOST One" as I approached with all the other girls. I said "My two year old wandered off."
He talked into his walky talky and told me she was found by someone and asked for a description. Imagine this. "Overalls, and she's wearning no shoes"

OH yes- she had TAKEN off her shoes as she insisted on trying on the sandles. In fact she had been WEARING those same coral sandles I bought, and thus I didn't expect her to get far in those- especially as they were tied together! But she apparently took them off and HELD them before sprinting, giggling away. So they brought her up front to me and said she had gone up to a staff in the store shirt and said "My Mommy is LOST"

The lady carrying her was holding the sandles and said "She has informed me she is buying these."
I laughed and said I had them already- that she'd have to borrow mine.

Typically when we shop we get one of those MONSTEROUS carts with the seats and straps for MULTIPLE children. They were all in use today when we arrived, so only the baby was strapped in the cart. Raitlin HAD BEEN sitting in the cart itself. She is VERY adept at climbing in and out however. For that matter, it really didn't make much difference AFTER I then strapped HER in the top seat and put the baby in the bottom of the cart. (The baby is getting big now! Almost a toddler! Any day she'll be walking- so she was THRILLED to stand in the cart as I tried on the shoes.)

EVEN AFTER getting Lost, Raitlin STILL thought it funny to unbuckle the strap and climb down and attempt to run off.

Eventually her sisters quoted DADDY "Your hankering for a spankering" which they find TREMENDOUSLY funny! So my NO SPANK philosophy was broken at the point at which RAITLIN decided it wasn't enough to try to run off, but upped the anty of her antics to STRIPPING in the store.

I had all I could do to NOT laugh!

She fought with me as I pulled up those Strawberry shortcake underwear over her naked butt... the poor boy around age 7 who was coming around the corner with his DAD! I think he was mortified! His DAD had a bit of a smirk as I reprimanded her, dressed her and then gave her a good swat on the then CLOTHED ass with the warning that it would hurt LOTS more if she stips again and gets a spank on her bare butt.

Raitlin miraculously decided to transform into an angelic little creature from that point forth.

Funny how that worked....

I even bought her some new sandels too!

But the most exciting shoe purchase of the day was by far the first pair of little NEW BABY SHOES for Alexy! (She has worn a pair of cute hand me down soft sneakers, but they got too worn so I tossed them out some months back and she's been shoeless since- except for one adorable pair of winter red swede boots she wore one time before it was too hot for those!) She was SO CUTE wanting to teethe on the one pair of funky chunky stylish gelled sandles with the fushia flower atop that were just too much for me to buy for an infant ! (NOT price wise- but STYLE wise!!) Those had been picked out by sister Katie. I settled on a more traditional cute white shoe with flowers on the side. I say SETTLED as I was SET on buying only LEATHER for her (which is my criteria for all the girls since it breathes better and is healthier to wear than plastics!), but I COULDN'T find her size in a decent priced leather shoe! I ALMOST bought her a boys shoe with a turtle on it as it was leather! I then decided after WEEKS of looking for these, to just get the man made materials as at this point she isn't walking YET and will likely only have them on her feet for CHURCH and the occassional outing. She'll be walking soon enough and NEED shoes, but its likely her feet might even grow by then, so I didn't want to pay much for them.

Hey- I've been wearing those black slip on fabric covered sandles for a while, and the CORAL ones with more of a heel are surprisingly MORE COMFORTABLE.
I would never have guessed that!

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