MDP: Date 7 — The shopping date

July’s Marriage Dating Project Date was probably not the most creative, original or even romantic date we’ve ever been on, but it was a good date nonetheless.  We had a chance to connect, enjoy each other’s company and rest.  What more could you ask for?

The weekend before last (sorry for the time delay, but I really wanted to run my parents’ marriage advice back-to-back) we decided at the last minute that Saturday would be a good day for our date.  My parents were traveling, but my in-laws were in town and happy to hang out with the kiddo.

The date we came up with was a shopping trip.  I know.  Super romantic, right?  But, it was fun and I got to spend time with just my husband.  (And this is coming from a woman who doesn’t enjoy shopping in general.)  We started out our date with a trip to Target.  Each July Target has awesome toy clearance.  Last year we ended up getting a good portion of the kiddo’s Christmas gifts in July on clearance.  They start at 30 percent, go to 50 and eventually to 75 percent off.  It’s perfect for this frugal mama’s budget!  I’ve been saving out money for Christmas gifts every paycheck since January, so we figured this was as good a time as any to start some Christmas shopping.  This is the first year that I know I’m going to have trouble buying things for Lexiana when she’s with me without her noticing.  She’ll be 3 in October and she doesn’t miss a thing.  Getting a chance to shop for her without her was perfect.

Our plan was if the toys were down to 75 percent then we’d go to a nearby big city and check out their toy clearance, especially since I had an extra 5 percent off card from pharmacy rewards (combined with the 5 percent off with my Target debit card and that was really nice!).  Unfortunately toys weren’t at 75 percent off.  However, we did find a couple of things that she’ll love.  We walked out spending $30 on toys that were $75 full price.  We were pretty happy about that.

We loaded things into our topless, doorless Jeep and dropped them off at home.  I picked up a coupon for a free spaghetti dinner at a fast food Italian place, but we decided instead to hit up a pizza place in the mall.  We don’t go to the mall very often.  We hadn’t eaten at this pizza place in probably years.  It was a good fit for something out of the ordinary.  We shared a large slice of pizza and munched on pepperoni-filled breadsticks.  Not too shabby!

Since we were at the mall, we decided to look around a bit.  My husband found a shirt and sunglasses.  I got a chocolate chip cookie to eat later.  I perused some clothes for the kiddo with my coupon in hand for The Children’s Place.  (Unfortunately I didn’t find what I was looking for.)  And we ended at the bookstore.  We came with a soft TARDIS keychain that makes the TARDIS noise when you squeeze it.  It’s now sitting on our entertainment center.

We still had plenty of time before picking the kiddo up, so we decided to continue with our theme of shopping and headed out to some car lots.  We’re not in the market for a car currently, but we know we probably will be within the next year or so and wanted to see what was out there.  We did some nice evasive action with salesmen and picked up Icees along the way.  Not a bad way to spend an afternoon with the husband.  We laughed about the time years ago at a local dealership when we pulled through to look at cars and a salesman practically jumped on the hood of our car trying to get us to stop and talk to him.  We shared a laugh again at another dealership when a salesperson appeared out of nowhere and startled my husband who had gotten out to check the price sticker on a vehicle.

We came back home and debated about what to do next.  My husband did a bit of vehicle research and I ended up dozing on the couch.  I know.  We’re super exciting.  I woke up later and found he was asleep, too, so I didn’t feel so bad.  We’re the parents of toddlers.  Sometimes we just need rest.  And that’s OK.  Our naps ended with a phone call from my dad asking us to go to my grandma’s and help with her water heater that had sprung a leak.  Fortunately my husband is handy and was able to get her water shut off and then talk with my plumber uncle about it so he could fix it for her.

We had a nice time.  Even though it was a shopping date, we didn’t break our budget.  We’re pretty simple that way.  We had chances to talk and laugh and nap.  It was good!

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