Monday, August 9, 2010

40 Doesn’t Belong at the Mall

I think I’ll have to do a series on life at 40. It’s already getting interesting.

It all started because we’ve needed a new set of dishes for a while. Our last set was an inexpensive purchase from Target that has served us well; however, several chips and broken plates later it’s time to replenish. I received a $30 Belk gift card for my birthday. Add to that Belk is having their big clearance sale including a 10% off coupon, and I figured I needed to check it out.

Friday, Ben had a homeschool board game party to attend from 7-9. I decided I’d hit the mall after dropping him off. It’s been a long time since I’ve been to the mall. Ben likes to call me Frugalista because I spend a lot of time figuring out how to save us money. Typically, saving money and going to the mall aren’t synonymous. This time I was armed with my gift card and coupon!

Arriving at Belk, I found several patterns I liked. They seemed reasonably priced until I realized that price was for one place setting! Yikes! Even at $20 (which is a lowball number), eight place settings would be $160. I think not!

Finally, I did find a small section of plate sets for four. Yes! Even better – they were 50% off. Now we’re talking! Two patterns caught my eye:

Tuscan Rooster Pattern

Tuscan Olive Pattern
I loved the rooster because it makes me think of my grandmother. She always had a big porcelain rooster in her kitchen. It now resides in mine. However, the Tuscan olives go along with the Italian style we have going in our kitchen. Feeling the need for some color – I went with the olives. Both sets were 50% off! Yes!

$75 X 2 Sets = $150 – 50% – 10% coupon – $30 giftcard = $40 for eight place settings! Jackpot!

Feeling quite satisfied with my plates and my frugality, I decided to wander into the mall. Mistake! Forty year old women do not belong in the local mall on a Friday night! At least, I don’t. Teenagers everywhere, and I do mean everywhere! But, that wasn’t the only issue. I was really disappointed by the shops in the mall. Who wears these clothes anyway? Even the mannequins looked embarrassed, and I was embarrassed for them!

I certainly felt the sting of what is marketed to our youth today. Whatever happened to modesty? Maybe that is an antiquated concept, but one that I believe needs to be revisited. Teens spend their evenings in malls being marketed sexuality (not to mention the messages they get through music, Hollywood, magazines, etc.). I felt the weight of forty because I know that the ethics of my generation were less than the one before it – are we on a slippery slope?

I turned around, left the mall, went back to Ben’s party and chatted with other homeschooling parents. I’d much rather have Ben playing board games and eating popcorn than roaming the mall.

So how do we instill values in our children when all the media around them tries to get them to go the other way? I think I’ll spend a few sleepless nights pondering this one. Oh look – another gray hair!

1 comment:

  1. This is GREAT! If I'd had something to drink in my probably would have come out my nose! (I'll be the big 4.0. in a couple weeks.)


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