Stepford has a new Target that is one half-mile and five minutes from my driveway. And it’s not a regular Target either, it’s a TarGucci. This is very, very bad for me because, well … my name is Kristi and I’m a Target addict. Say it with me now, “Hello, Kristi.”
I seriously believe I could survive shopping no where else but TarGucci. Starbucks, check. Sushi, check. Shoes and clothing, check. Lip gloss, hair color, dental floss, tampons, check, check, check, and check. I’m trying hard here to figure out what I could possibly need that is not contained within the walls of my drug of choice. Nope, nothing is coming to me.
So yesterday, my eight-year-old daughter (the Christmas Elf) and I went to TarGucci under the disguise of grocery shopping for Christmas dinner. What we were really there for was to buy me some cute t-shirts and sweat pants to wear during the holidays. It was freezing in Stepford yesterday. No, really it was way past freezing. It was 27 degrees when the Christmas Elf and I hit the store, neither of us wearing a proper coat. It’s very hard in Texas to get in the habit of dressing appropriately for cold weather because it comes and goes so quickly. Twenty-four hours earlier, it had been seventy-two degrees.
Teeth chattering, the Christmas Elf and I hit Starbucks first. Hot chocolate for her, grande hazelnut latte with two equals for me. I never said Stepford was all bad. Then off to find the hip Ts I had seen a fellow Stepford Wife sporting the day before. I was quickly able to locate what I needed and was only slowed down by the Christmas Elf’s unfortunate mishap with her hot chocolate. I didn’t see exactly what happened, but my impression was that she squeezed a bit too tightly on the cup, ejecting the lid, which startled her into dropping the entire cup on the floor. The hot chocolate exploded. It’s crazy how a small cup of liquid looks like gallons when its spread across TarGucci’s floor. We quickly moved to the Christmas Elf’s section to buy new tights.
And there in the girl’s section we hit a snag. On an end cap there was a display of little girl t-shirts. They were knock offs of the classic I Heart NY Ts. Except these didn’t say “I Love NY.” One said, “I Love Fashion.” Another, “I Love Candy.” However, the one the Christmas Elf set her little beating heart on said “I Love New Stuff.” She whipped a sized-medium off the rack and held it close to her body as if it were life itself.
I said, flatly, “Uh, no.”
I was thinking, “Hell no, over my dead body no, no f’ing way no.”
She said, “Why?”
I said, “Because, I don’t think it’s appropriate for you to walk around in a T-shirt that says you love new stuff.”
I get the irony here … I know, really I do, I know I was in TarGucci getting my fix of new stuff because I’m addicted to new stuff, because, well, I LOVE new stuff.
She said, “But Mom, it’s the truth. I really do love new stuff.”
Good Lord, not only am I two bricks short of being a fully-loaded Stepford Wife, but I’m looking down at one in training.
I said, taking a deep breath, “I know you do. I do too. But it’s kind of boastful and braggy to wear it written on a t-shirt.”
She said, “Because if someone couldn’t ever afford new stuff, my t-shirt might hurt their feelings?”
I said, “Yes, honey, something like that.”
So we left TarGucci with the “I Love Candy” t-shirt. Last night as I was tucking her into bed she said, “Mom, do you know what my favorite thing is about Christmas?” I said, “What?” And, once again, without knowing it, this beautiful child validated me as a mom by saying, “It’s not the presents. It’s my family. I love my family.”
And her family loves her, too.