Sunday, November 28, 2010

Black Friday Madness

This past Friday was not my best Black Friday experience.  It was my own fault really.  I wasn't prepared and did not have a complete list together even though I had been looking at ads on-line for a couple of weeks.  Most of my items were at Target and Target was untouchable.  The line was literally insane and I am not a diehard Black Friday.  I'm not going to risk my life in a crazy Target stampede to save $15 on a Wii Fit or what have you.  But by not attempting the Target madness, my list fell by the wayside and I found myself wandering aimlessly througout town. 

My alarm was set for three and I was out of the house with coffee in hand by 3:16am.   Old Navy opened at Midnight so I headed there first.  My niece and nephew had circled their desired items so I knew exactly what I wanted to buy.  At 3:30 the store was detroyed.  Clothes were strewn about the floor and other clothes items were thrown on to racks, totally disorganized.  It was a free-for-all.  I rummaged through the pea coats looking for a black in size medium.  Ugh, there wasn't a single medium.  Then I head over to the boy's hooded sweatshirts.  I couldn't find the circled item.  Then I realize that my nephew had circled the toddler hood sweatshirts.  I start walking around the store like a zombie. 

I see a puffy cream vest, I grab it, then a green scarf grab that too.  I go back to the pea coat scramble and after several minutes of digging, I find a size medium black under some sweaters.  I go to the women's section and find a black hooded sweatshirt for my nephew.   It's black, looks the same as a men's..  Okay, first store done.

Head to Target for 4am.  See the utter madness and flashing lights from police cars and high tail it out of there.  No way I was waiting an hour to get into the store.  I figure I will head back there later after the mall. Head to the mall.  Walk right into JC Penney.  I had $10 stainless coffee mugs on my list , a back up pea coat option if Old Nacy didn't work out and a 15% off coupon.  I look at the pea coats.  Hmm, maybe I'll get one for myself?  Then I walk by a Columbia Jacket display.  50% off.  And look, the jacket I wanted to get last year for $115 but wouldn't spend the money.  Grabbed it in cream.  But wait , I just got a puffy vest from Old Navy in cream.  Better go with the black.  Go to check out got the jacket for $48.  Sweet.

Then I head to the Children's place, 30% off entire store including sale items.  I grabbed the boys their Red Christmas sweaters that I have been eyeing and my daughter some tights.  Now off to Edddie Bauer for the hub's jeans.  40% off entire store and I have a 15% off coupon.  Grab two pairs of jeans and a sweater for myself.  Can't combine the coupon so I put the sweater back.  Now I leave the mall and head back to Target.  Go inside, the checkout line starts right as you walk in wrapping the entire perimeter of the store.  Forget it.

I then head to Michael's for my mother-in-law's Cricut.  It ended up being a door buster so I couldn't use the 30% off coupon.  Grabbed a couple items for the kids.  I was tempted to go back to Target but it was now 6am and I was feeling pretty guilty for buying myself a vest, scarf and jacket.  Mind you, I donated my winer jacket last year to the Salvation Army so I really needed one.

I go home and start reviewing my purchases and my husband tries on the jeans.  They don't fit.  I then realize that I never received my 30 % off at the Children's Place.  I'm still feeling guilty about the vest.  So yesterday I went back to Old Navy and returned the vest.  Went back to Eddie Bauer and exchanged the jeans and went to the Children's Place to get my 30% off.  Apperently the new saleswomen had made the mistake several times that morning. 

So did I save, yes I did.  Was it amazing savings?  No.  And get this.  When I returned the vest to Old Navy I of course walked around the store saw that the pea coats were still 50% off, some gloves were marked down even further and the hooded sweatshirt that I bought for my nephew, $10 less.  My husband ended up finding two pairs of jeans that he liked better and fit better than the Eddie Bauer ones.  So ultimately, I need to make yet another return. 

So was it worth it?  Umm, not really.  So will I go back shopping next Black Friday?  Probably, if I have someone to shop with and if I am more organized.

I definitely recommend a partner to bounce ideas off of and a list for a successful shopping experience.