Here in Canada, we are in the midst of a long weekend. Not because we are celebrating Thanksgiving. No, we got that done with a while ago. No, we have a long weekend because…honestly, I don’t know why we have a long weekend. My oldest had a pedagogical day and we had to opportunity to enjoy each other’s company a little more. And thankfully (no pun intended) I am able to have some extra time with him for most of this weekend. I’ll admit, I got up earlier than my kids and snuck out while Papa MOE held down the fort for breakfast. I headed to one store and one store only. Here’s what happened:
The night before, I swung by the big box toy store (you know the one) and asked when they would open for Black Friday. Honestly, the store was empty. It was quiet and calm. Calm before the storm, no doubt. The sweet lady behind the customer service desk informed me the store would open at 8am even though the flyer said 7am. Why? The flyer is distributed to all stores in Canada and the fine print states that some stores have different hours. So, with that in mind, I still left early to get out before my kids woke up. It would have been too hard to explain to them what I needed to do so early in the morning. So I leisurely went to Tim Horton’s to grab a double-double and a bagel and I drove to Toys R Us to have breakfast. When I arrived, I saw a line up…I am not kidding. Obviously, these poor guys read the flyer and assumed the store opened at 7am. Before I knew it, the line up was too great to ignore, and I got out of my car…grumbling on my way to the entrance. Could I convince a crowd of people that the store opened only at 8am and we all could go back to our cars and wait an hour? Not likely. Did I want to attempt it? Well, not really, but it was cold!
I let everyone around me know that the store only opened at 8am. It didn’t go over too well. Some left because they couldn’t wait that long, some were frustrated, and one even wanted the manager. The night shift leaving informed us that even the manager hadn’t arrived yet! But in the spirit of a good deal and gifts for the kids, we all still waited in line. Some were parents, some were even grandparents! And the very first person in line was a teenager who I later would find out waited in line to get the Nintendo 3DS.
And that brings me to my next point. You know, if you have come to my blog before, that my favourite toy store is, and will always be, Jouets Choo-Choo. So why did I cross to the other side (literally in geographic location)? I didn’t! Here’s the deal: now that my child has hit school age, and my children like certain Disney shows, Toys R Us is the place where I can get those things. And while I would love Jouets Choo-Choo to carry everything my kids would like, sometimes, I have to shop around. So, I had a list of non-Choo-Choo items to get, and I did for the most part. I still feel strongly about the quality of toys as a whole. And some toys my kids want this year do not make the cut! I don’t care who has what and how much they want it, if it’s not safe and really of no educational value, it’s a no-no.
So, what did I get? One thing I always get for their stocking is Play-Doh by Hasbro. They spend hours creating things with Play-Doh and I have seen their dexterity change over the years from playing with it. Here’s a sample of today’s creations:
Anything Disney character related, I got at Toys R Us too. My kids are big into Jake and the Neverland Pirates. So another stocking stuffer will be some figurines. They love pretend play and they’re at the age of holding their favourite ‘friends’ in their hand or pocket.
A few other presents for other children were picked up too (My Little Pony was something I was searching for), a couple of toddler movies and some hot wheels tracks, and I was done.
So was it worth it? Yes. I need to buy for three little ones at Christmas, and Santa needs to get their requested toys at a good price! I can tell you this, nothing it worth fighting other people for. When I got home, I saw the craziness that happened in the US at a store…for that, I have not words. To be honest with you, I would love to NOT walk into another store for the rest of the holiday season. In fact that is my wish for you too!
I am working on a fantastic gift guide for you and all the items are available on-line!! Your holiday shopping will be taken care of in a few clicks. And if you are lucky, you may even WIN your gifts! I have two giveaways going on right now, and much more to come!
Read my next post for some of my absolute favourites from Jouets Choo-Choo this year, which by the way, has an online site!! (Psst, this weekend, Jouets Choo-Choo is having a super sale on the Thomas and Friends Collection on-line.)
To all my American friends, enjoy the rest of your Thanksgiving weekend! No ploughing anyone down, not even to get to the pumpkin pie! Cheers!