Saturday, December 5, 2009

Targets and Bull's Eyes

Saturday night the boys were occupied for a two-hour Christmas party sponsored by the YMCA so Andy and I had ourselves a date! Dinner and a movie? Not enough time. Just dinner? Nah. Get some Christmas shopping done at Target? Yes.

Over a week ago I sat down to make my gift list. I had notes to organize, ideas to jot down, shopping trips to plan. Because I am over-organized, I had 3 years of gift list history to look over. This would allow me to make my 2009 list based on who we'd bought for in past years and what we'd given.

But a few other things came up and I didn't get that fancy list made. The list and many other tasks had fallen by the wayside. Sometimes there are not enough hours in the day for all of my projects and lists.

On the way to Target, I glance over last year's list and throw together this year's. Done in 3 minutes. Andy and I enter the store and he drives the cart so I can manage the list. Thirty seconds into our limited-time shopping trip, I'm thrown off course by the dollar section (See Spot Save) and and wave at Andy to stop. But he doesn't stop. Shakes me off. We don't need dollar stuff.

Based on past history, I cannot get past the dollar section without perusing the offerings, marveling at what a dollar buys, placing items in my cart and then re-shelving them all because I really needed nothing. An excellent use of time.

He heads to the boy's clothing section to select pants and shirts for our angels, the boys we're giving gifts to through the Angel Tree program at church. I call out the sizes and Andy chooses pants and then hoodies. I suggest we get button-down shirts as well and he tosses two into the cart. Next.

Left alone, I would have systematically weaved my cart throughout this entire department checking out everything from outerwear to underwear. Do my boys need new PJ's? I could pick those up here and save a trip to the mall which will save time and I am all about saving time. Oh wait, I'm supposed to be shopping for angel clothes.

The angels requested outdoor toys and cars. Andy wheels around to the Nascar section and carefully yet quickly chooses a few race cars. He questions the outdoor toy request, wanting to know what that means. I don't know but I think maybe balls or rockets or Nerf guns. Andy disappears for 5 minutes and then adds a football and a basketball to the cart for the angel and a set of Nerf guns for our nephews. The board game I had selected for said nephews is placed back onto the shelf.

I scan the list. I call out more items. Action Andy delivers. We are tackling the toy department in record time. He sees that our work here is almost done and leaves me to search for a snack. Within seconds I slip into my lone shopper mode. Without Andy holding me accountable I find myself in the shoe department looking for rain boots then over to housewares to scope out the newest dish towels. Then I mosey through the DVD section and finally arrive at the wrapping paper area via a detour through the trim-a-tree area.

I am stumped selecting appropriate wrapping paper. I wanted a solid red roll and a solid green roll. Found one red roll but a no-can-do on that green roll. A red and white print will have to do. I search for a third roll that says classic yet childish and find it amidst the garish and plentiful rolls of bright green, hot pink and electric blue. Since when is wrapping paper so tacky?

On to the gift tag section and do I go stickers or hang tags? My cell phone rings. Action Andy is ready to go. Wants to know what is taking me so long. I grab the hang tags and then toss a hastily-chosen spool of ribbon in the cart. Picking up speed I race to the front of the store passing by a handful of departments I cannot visit this trip but will come back for soon. Oh, I did make a very brief stop for amaryllis bulbs in galvanized buckets.

Andy meets me at the check-out and begins placing items on the belt. I scan the list. We've done pretty well in 70 minutes' time and in one store. This would have taken me days to accomplish. Me, Miss Organized, Miss I-Am-So-Efficient.

Almost done and Action Andy asks the cashier to bag his beef jerky and Coke Zero separately from the other items. He wants to have his snack in the car. Worked up an appetite shopping. I walk beside him as he pushes the cart brimming with red and white bags to the car. "We got a lot done, don't you think?"

Yes we, I me you, did. I watch him as he drives away from Target, snacking on beef jerky, undoubtedly feeling a sense of accomplishment. I thought about the differences in our shopping styles and I was a bit jealous that I'm not more like him. Andy saw the target(Target) and hit a bull's eye.

Maybe I can learn a thing or two about time management from Action Andy. Maybe obsessing over my various lists is counter-productive. Maybe I am too scattered in my thinking. Maybe I try to do too much. Maybe I have some room for improvement. Is it possible that I don't know it all and my way isn't the only way? Bull's eye.


  1. I'm an "Action Andy" shopper, only b/c I don't really like to shop all that much. What's wrong with me...right?
    ~ Wendy

  2. Wendy- I really don't care for shopping either but I sure can manage to waste time doing something I don't even what's wrong with me is the better question:)

  3. LOVED it...paritally because you spoke of my MotherShip so sweetly (Target...the angels have been known to sing on occassion when I walk thru the door) and because of your thought processes. I am a detailed it a little too much...

    Thanks for this...

  4. No, your gift choices are always on target! And your wrapping! And so is this blog!