As is the custom among my people (okay, among my family), this morning I got up bright and early (oh so early), tossed some coffee down my throat, grabbed a piece of the lemon curd coffee cake from last night to stash for later once my stomach woke up, and drove off to Vacaville to meet my older sister and my mom for the after-Christmas sales. The women in my family have been doing this every single year that I can recall, and it is always a lot of fun.

We met up at Target and went through there first, but they didn’t have much of anything at all. I suspect this is because Target, like many other stores, has been doing a lot of their ‘after Christmas’ sales blitzes before Christmas these years, so there isn’t as much left for after. I did, however, manage to pick up a couple stocking stuffers for next year, and my mom found the LED lights she was looking for, so it wasn’t a total loss.

We also swung by Pier One and Joann Fabrics. Pier One always has a lot of absolutely gorgeous holiday decor, but my house has Rupert and Sherman, so anything breakable doesn’t stand a chance. Joann Fabrics has had some really cute Christmas stuff in the past but there was pretty much nothing left at all (and we got there when they first opened) so that was a bit of a disappointment.

We had much better luck at Michael’s and Cost Plus. Lots of awesome stocking stuffers, plus it is always so much fun to just wander through Cost Plus and get inspired by all the beautiful furniture and accessories.

After that my mom and sister and I headed off to Panera, where we got hot drinks and possibly also pastries, and set up camp at a table in the very back corner while we waited for the menfolk to come join us.

Once everyone made it to one location and lunch was consumed, we then all headed back to my parents’ house, for annual exchanging of gifts and the much-anticipated consuming of cookies. Mmm, cookies.

I am quite happy with all of my presents. Among other things, I got copies of two books I have been really really wanting: What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe of xkcd, and Do Zombies Dream of Undead Sheep?: A Neuroscientific View of the Zombie Brain by Timothy Verstynen and Bradley Voytek. We saw Bradley Voytek at WesterCon in Salt Lake City this summer and he gave a presentation on the neuroscience of zombies, and read excerpts from the book, and it was absolutely delightful. Both of these books are basically sneaky science (using weird things to get someone to learn something useful), but I’m totally fine with that.

I also got these, because my family is awesome and clearly knows me well.


My brother-in-law got the coffee beans ice mold too, except he unwrapped his before I unwrapped mine and I freely admit I stared at it and my first thought was ‘ooh, where can *I* get one of those!’ and then I unwrapped mine a little later on and gave a little cheer.

‘Tis the season for Holidailies.

  • Dec. 26 is my favorite shopping day of the year. I was at Walmart for 6:30 and stocked up on gift sets and decorations for next year! I think I am making another run today to see what’s left….

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