Straight up, I am so broke right now.
I am not gonna cry poor – I just want to make this point known as I begin this post.
I’m not like poverty level poor or anything. I support myself and all that jazz. I don’t receive money from the government or my parents or Bill Gates (although if dude wanted to pass out free $100 dollar bills, I wouldn’t say no). It just means that the extras – like Christmas, birthdays, long vacations – are sometimes a bit hard. I use mint.com to budget for the regular monthly expenditures like toothpaste, crazy pills, toilet paper and food. The BBE and I even budget for “date night” twice a month, which typically consists of dinner and a movie… yep, we’re wild and crazy folks:). My unexpected doctor’s visits and medication last month to sort out my sinus infection and bacteria eye infection where definitely not in the budget, and I’ve already maxed out my FSA for the year. So if you get a gift frmo me this year, please know that it’s from the bottom of my heart… and the very bottom of my pocketbook:)
There are so many people in my life that I want to make feel special at Christmas by remembering them with a gift, so this year, I decided to get all “crafty” and took myself to JoAnn’s to begin preparing for the Official Sunburnt Peach’s Broke A$$ Christmas Season.
Going to JoAnn was my first mistake. On their best day, many of their employees are cranky and irritable from dealing with ignorant people like me who tackle crazy crafting projects and don’t have a clue what supplies they need to do them with. Whenever I have fabric cut I always end up with the cranky old lady who is 2 parts full of knowledge about whatever I’m trying to do, and 8 parts pissed to be working past her retirement age and dealing with stupid customers like me who ask her 80 thousand questions. The whole time she’s working on my order I’m holding in my smart ass responses to her rudenes and staring at the (and yes I counted them) 8 rings she has on her left hand. The nicest employee in the whole store is this lady that works at the cash register – she has a giant mustache which is why I remember her each time. That, and the fact that she’s even nicer than the customer service manager, who pissed me off so badly after refusing to honor a price mistake (which was the fabric department’s fault and not mine) that I walked out and left my stuff at the register. So clearly I was desparate and utterly humbled to even go crawling back into that cesspool of craft confusion and shitty seing idea. I headed over there on Black Friday, thinking I’d score a great deal on fleece to make a few “no sew” blankets for some friends (New to this concept? Click here) since I couldn’t afford too many store-bought presents… and personalize gifts are always so much better, right?
Ok, let’s detour here for a sec.
I have learned that I am a hard person to shop for. I don’t mean to be! I’d much rather get a nice Target gift card, or a gift card to my favorite big girl store, Torrid as opposed to trying to explain the items I’d like for Christmas or birthday. One of my new interests is golf, and it’s wrong to ask people to buy me golf gear – it’s too expensive. I also like reading… how strange would it be to ask people to get me a new book on my Kindle?
I usually feel kindy crappy too, like when the other person spends more on their gift for you than you could afford to spend on them? It just reasserts my Broke A$$ status.
I also don’t like it when people shop for clothes for me… I’m too paranoid they won’t fit or won’t be my style. And I feel like a jerk telling them that it’s not right, so I usually won’t say anything, resulting in a pile of ill-fitting clothing that I feel to crappy to return to the store. So, gift cards it is 🙂 Gift card to Chipotle or Ulta? Thank you very much – every girl love a free burrito and a head of shiny super cute hair courtesy of the uber expensive bottle of shampoo she can’t normally afford. Nom nom nom *tosses hair*
Now back to the story… because of the growing popularity of the no-sew blanket, fleece has gotten a bit expensive. The demand to homemade gifts apparently has grown as well because the store was PACKED! JoAnn was filled with long lines, lots of shopping buggies and other frantic broke a$$ holiday shoppers desparate to snatch up the best deals. So after perusing the fleece section, I decided this was the year I’d bake, Bake, BAKE my way through my Christmas gifts. Thus we encounter my second mistake.
I decided on making little loaves of banana nut bread, and tagging them with cute little cards. What a HOT MESS. Spent several hours yesterday wandering stores looking for little cellophane bags to put them in, with little success, finally settling on regular old saran wrap with a little curling ribbon. Very homespun and sweet, right? Um, have you ever attempted 12 little loaves of anything? (If you’re an experienced chef please refrain from commenting)
I must have missed a step or lost my baking mojo. Half of them came out perfect – the other half came out flat and soggy. I’m staring at them at a complete loss – most of my gift budget went into getting the ingredients, what do I do??
No seriously, you guys, what do I do???? If I have to go to JoAnn again in the next 3 months for so much as a spool of thread I might have to set it on fire.