Move over, Target. In your face, Wal-Mart. I’ll never waste twenty minutes in your lines again. I’ve discovered the newest buy-all-you-need-plus-an-extra-$50-worth-you-didn’t-need superstore, and it’s much closer to home.
In fact, it is in my home. My living room, to be exact.
And I assure you, it contains pretty much everything you could want.
Clothes, of course, in various states of cleanliness. You’ll find ladies’ sweaters and men’s socks in abundance, but the store specialty is little girls’ clothing and accessories. Tops, leggings, sundresses, three sunhats, two swimsuits, five pairs of sunglasses, a beach towel (apparently, the merchandising manager was going for a summertime theme), a red shoe, a jelly shoe, two mismatched boots, and large quantities of bright and sparkly costume jewelry. Dance leotards. Last night’s pajamas. A trail of school uniform-matching hairclips with tiny wisps of hair still stuck in the teeth.
Pause for a moment to admire the unusual merchandising scheme in the reading department. Beside the stack of books sits a display of playing cards and gambling chips. An odd combination? Not if you want to be prepared for the chance that your book club suddenly decides to break out into an impromptu game of poker.
Craft supplies are all over here. Tape, scissors– both safety scissors and the regular sharp ones that only Mommy is supposed to touch–, a pencil sharpener, a very small, very well-sharpened pencil, and a glue stick with no cap. Don’t worry, though, because the glue stick cap has been assimilated into the massive construction paper and pipe cleaner creation that forms the core of the home decor aisle.
Got the munchies mid-shop? This store has it covered. Savvy shoppers can always snack on ABC-block soup, the Maiden’s half-eaten breakfast, and the chalky vitamin she said she ate. Just look behind the displays of Disney Princess attire. For the seriously hungry, never fear: simply lift the sofa pillows to uncover a sumptuous buffet, which also happens to read as a diet diary of our family. True, it’s carb-heavy, but I see raisins and something that might have been meat, once upon a dream. I think the locals refers to it as “jerky”.
I should find it disturbing to think that most of a portion of my house looks like a Super Wal-Mart threw up on the carpet. And normally it does bother me, namely when I trip on a bucket of crayons and land facefirst in the Lego aisle. And when someone’s coming over. And when the Maiden won’t nap. And when the Maiden is whining. And when it’s raining. And when it’s sunny and the Maiden wants to go play outside in her swimsuit and it’s only 70 degrees out and she won’t listen either to reason or to the thermometer being brandished in her face.
But at this moment, safe in the sanctuary of the office, I am mellow. Now, in all fairness, it might be because the Maiden is taking an unexpected and unprecedented (and completely wonderful) nap. But right now I feel as though the toys, books, and games strewn with wild abandon, although messy, are simply proof that my child is happy.
Sure, I wish she would take out one game at a time, and we’re working on that. At the end of the day, though, the mess, no matter how big, is only a mess. It can always be put away. And in the meantime, my (slightly messy) daughter is making memories that will last her a lifetime!