Saturday, December 24, 2016

The Gift Of Imagination

2 nights ago I did something I believe most parents can relate too. Raise your hand if you ever get the last minute “ I didn’t get my kid enough stuff” anxiety.. I hate it, it goes against everything we believe and live by, but I still get that feeling every year. We do keep it simple at Christmas, alteast compared to a majority of americans, but she does get here share of stuff.
So , 2 nights ago…. I got in my car and drove AN HOUR one way to the store,, and not just any store,, wait for it…………. The corporate monster.. Walmart.
NOW here is where I defend myself
The Defendant calls Jaime Cool to the stand:
Walmart is all we have, literally… If you follow my blog you are familiar with just how removed we are from civilization. To recap: I have to drive 12 miles of gravel to get to a paved rd. after about 40 minutes I hit a town of 500 ( a crossroads with a gas station, a small mountain  school of 300.. k-8) a post office that’s open like 3 hours a day, and a small medical center ( thank god for that) and that’s it… another 10-15 minutes brings me to town. A town of about 18,000.. and we don’t have much in the way of stores.. your fast food restaurants, big lots, a bunch of different grocery stores, and Walmart,, a big ass Walmart….
I am not a regular Walmart shopper, I do go in for thread and fabric from time to time ( as we don’t have a fabric store, that’s 56 miles away, about 1.5 hours) or those things I cant find anywhere else,, a gun , a canoe, a trampoline ( haha, I haven’t bought any of those things, but you get it,, they have everything) . All my food shopping ( what we don’t grow and can,, snacks , sugar , flour, coffee milk etc) is done at Aldo and Big lots, my 2 favorite stores
Only one problem  Aldi and Biglots, nor any other store in town had one I was looking for
2 specific,, MY LITTLE PONIES..
My daughter has been obsessed with my little ponies for more than a short phase. More like 2 YEARS. She brushes their hair every morning, they go to school with her every day … they have been in the creek , in the dirt, in the bathtub, have eaten dinner with us, gone to town with us,, they are almost family, haha

Ok so here I am 7 o clock at night, and  I Pull in to a SEA OF CARS. Now this is no small parking lot,, and it WAS. FULL.. of last minute crazed Christmas shoppers
“what in the hell am I doing here???” I ask myself. And then I go in..
anndddddd it’s a mad house.. full of people buying stuff..
and here I am buying stuff..
and wondering why Im here buying ….. stuff…..
Ive always enjoyed christmas for the decorating, baking, handmade gifts, making memories…. Yes the stuff has always been part of it,, but not my favorite part..

Straight ahead, to not pass go , do not collect 200 dollars,,, get to the pony aisle STAT!
I get to the pony aisle,,  it looks like a tornado hit the pony aisle.. good lord..
So ok, this should be easy, pick a 2 ponies.. I am pretty sure I stood there for 20 minutes looking.
She really wanted the pony with the beauty shop etc,, but you spend 11.00 more for a bunch of plastic crap that I am just gonna end up stepping on in 24 hours… KEEP IT SIMPLE, I tell myself…
I find 2 ponies ( that she doesn’t have and has asked for)
I head to check out and get the hell outta there, haha,, back to the forest, back to the gravel rd, back to the quiet….

So fastforward to the next day. Norah spent they day outside playing with the chickens..
Chasing them, trapping them,talking to them…. I would peek outside or do my usual “call” to make sure she was ok and still in the yard ( she likes to sneak off into the woods and down to the creek without asking sometimes). I cleaned the house and did inside chores… around late afternoon she called me outside to show me what she had been doing
A sled of water and a chicken fort, of course !

Now this isn't out of the ordinary for Miss Norah. She is always building something outside, creating , using her imagination. But I guess it just struck a chord with me because I was in such a tiz to get her more STUFF 2 nights earlier...

I don't know why I felt compelled to write this. This is  not intended to be a judgmental post, nor is it written to make you feel guilty about all that stuff you bought..

Lets face it,, Our kids will wake up Christmas Morning so excited and tear into all That stuff we bought, there will be smiling, giggling, excitement and memories.. and it makes it all worth it,,,

But don't forget to leave a little room for the best  gift you can give a child........

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from our Homestead to yours!!

The Cools


  1. Happy Holidays to you and yours!
    and I hope you meant place and not palace, hahahaha..
    as my house is a just a 600 sq ft hunting cabin built in the 60's with some additions over the years:) making it a nice size of just over 1000 sq feet :)

  2. Our first house in town in a galaxy far far away was 1100 sq ft including the garage. As far as the ponies go imagination not batteries included. Don't sweat the "small stuff".

  3. Happy Christmas and I trust you had a blessed time with your family. Happy New Year to you too

  4. we had a wonderful day!
    Merry Christmas and A blessed New year to you !!!

  5. It all looked lovely...hope you made some wonderful memories. x

  6. I know what you mean! It's hard to cut back. I have 3 grandkids now and it's still tough to cut back. I live in the edge of Bankhead Nat'l Forest in Bama but not off grid. It's an hour to church so I just hang in town all Sunday instead of traveling back & forth for evening service. We do have a dollar general now about 4 miles away. Shopping for anything is a long trip and pretty much takes most of the day. When I was working it was a 134 mile commute every day. It's nice when I get to stay home for a few days at a time but too many things and family expect my presence more frequently than I care. We may end up having to move closer to all soon. The constant driving is getting old.
    When my girls were young I tried to go with a "homemade" Christmas a few times but it was not a popular idea. Imagination is so lacking in much of the youth today. Kudos to you.