Column: This is the season for giving thanksThanksgiving is next week, and as usual, I still don’t have a turkey. Shoving a turkey into my freezer is almost impossible because my freezer shelves are ridiculously close together. I can cram large flat items in there, like an eight pound bag of soup from Kwik Trip, but bumpy things like a turkey carcass pose a challenge.
By: Mary Lebens, The Farmington Independent
Thanksgiving is next week, and as usual, I still don’t have a turkey. Shoving a turkey into my freezer is almost impossible because my freezer shelves are ridiculously close together. I can cram large flat items in there, like an eight pound bag of soup from Kwik Trip, but bumpy things like a turkey carcass pose a challenge.
So the day before Thanksgiving I race to the grocery store, fingers crossed, hoping to snag the last turkey before they are sold out. One year I worked late and ended up with a smoked turkey breast instead of a whole bird. That night I tossed and turned, worried what my guests would say about the sudden turn from the traditional bird. Luckily everyone enjoyed the smoked breast. My grandma even said it tasted better than the normal turkey. Of course, my grandma’s favorite foods are White Castle hamburgers and take-out chow mein, so she’s easy to please. But it’s the thought that counts.
This year I’m racing out to get the bird, cooking it up, and then resting the next day. I’m avoiding the Black Friday sales like the black plague. I wrapped up my Christmas shopping in September. That might make it sound like I’m bragging about ability to avoid procrastination, but that’s definitely not the case. Kohl’s mailed me a 30 percent off coupon for my entire purchase in September.
I’ve been conducting my own comprehensive survey of previous Kohl’s coupon mailings over the past six years, and I know that statistically a 30 percent off coupon arrives only once a year. I decided to make the most of it and buy everything at Kohl’s. (I apologize to family and friends who are reading this and were really hoping for a gift from Macy’s instead. Maybe next year I’ll get myself onto the Macy’s coupon mailing list.)
Of course, as soon as I wrapped up my Christmas shopping at Kohl’s, Fleet Farm announced their daring move to hold an “Orange Friday” sale. I was sorely tempted to head over there and buy more Christmas gifts, just because I enjoy an outing to Fleet Farm. Before I started tracking Kohl’s coupons, I used to buy all of my Christmas gifts at Fleet Farm, beautiful presents like camouflage sweatshirts, giant tins of walnuts, and trailer hitch covers shaped like mallard duck heads. Shopping is a whole lot more fun if you can do it at a place that features calf huts and car batteries.
In 2002, I discovered Fleet Farm branded wrapping paper, huge rolls of black paper sprinkled with the familiar orange logo. All of the gifts under the tree were orange and black that year. I finally used up the last of the Fleet Farm paper last year and opted for a more traditional wrap featuring a print of gold ornaments.
Although I love Fleet Farm, I think my family is probably relieved I started using the Kohl’s coupons for Christmas gifts. Between the more appropriate gifts and more traditional wrapping paper, our holiday celebrations have developed a much more refined sense of taste. Of course, it’s not the gifts that matter, so much as the care behind them. I think my family and friends understand I only buy them trailer hitch covers and camouflage clothing out of love. I have so much to give thanks for this holiday season, my understanding friends and family, my awesome students and co-workers, and best of all, the chance to enjoy holiday celebrations together in snowy Minnesota. May you have much to be thankful for as well this Thanksgiving.