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Sunday, November 28, 2010

My Black Friday and Little Plastic Farm Animals

It was a cold and rainy day....really, it was. So, even if I were going to stay up and get trampled at Walmart at midnight or stand in line for a 5 am deal, the weather would have dampened (pun intended) my enthusiasm.

My goal: to buy two cameras for grandchildren using no money, just my recycling of cartridges at Office Max. I was tempted to buy both of them a $49 camera. But, I hated the alkaline, rechargeable batteries in my first digital. So, I just bought the gdaughter one with Lithium Ion. Okay, maybe you will have to spend a little money for a fabulous gift.

Last year, I bought a $189 camera for $22, using the Office Max Recycling dollars I accumulated.  At first, the camera was regular price. Then it went on sale. Finally, I purchased it. Then it went down in price. So, they refunded my money and resold it to me....voila! $22 for a final price. The HP sd card, 4 GB, was $10 at Big Lots. This was a camera for me.

I was deliriously happy with the OM camera and now must wait to buy one for her big brother. Hers could be any color, but his must be black or silver...you know--manly-ish. Okay, I did ignore the help of a salesclerk who told me he loved his blue camera when he was in high school.

Maybe you can get credit for recycling cartridges and toner at Office Max. I used this credit for acquiring all the school supplies for my grandchildren.

Caveat: OM changes the rules, so read carefully. They are convoluted, and most OM customer service folk get it wrong!

Then, I went to every store in town, looking for a $1 item--tiny farm animals. The chicken would be about 1/2" tall, the dog was a bit taller, and the horse maybe almost 2" tall. Then I put a request on a local, free site, not freecycle. People started telling me my grandchildren would swallow them, choke on them. Then, other people started telling off the "warner." BIG hullabaloo. Still, no farm animals!

Does anyone remember these? Only one store out of 12 where I went had them, but they were sold out. When I stand face-to-face with a clerk and describe the size of the animals, eager clerks exclaim and lead me to six inch cows that are as fat as my fist. One led me to a farm set with a huge barn. I said, "SMALL bag of animals and maybe a fence!" No, I don't say that to them. I say it in my head! These are seasonal employees, sometimes teens with first job. Sigh...sigh....they are so proud of themselves that I hate to burst their bubble.

Now, I have resorted to asking any acquaintance I see if their grandchildren have any lying around and are old enough to have lost interest. That ploy is not working.

Now, it is a bright and sunny day....aaaahh, much better. I am still short one camera and tiny farm animals. The camera is covered. Got any ideas for farm animals? I went to thrift stores. One had sold a bag of said animals just before I walked in. NOT!

This one little cloud hangs in my Christmas sky.

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