Thursday, October 9, 2008

HOW much is that paper?

Here's the thing: I'm not a total cheapskate. Contrary to vicious rumors circulating in some circles, I will in fact occasionally pay more for quality products (for instance, Cold Stone ice cream, Cheerios vs. the store brand Taste-ios, the new twisty shaped lightbulbs that are supposed to save the earth). However, I draw the line at paying $2.90 for a sheet of 12x12 scrapbook paper.

Oh wait - except I DID today! Yeah - that's right, I could have gotten three or four candy bars, but instead, I got one freakin' piece of Halloween themed paper! And why did this happen?!? Because of Catholic guilt. Catholic guilt and improper price tag postage. Oh, and because NavyGuy wanted to see a movie.

Okay, so... NavyGuy wanted to see a movie in Burlington at the real theater. Scratch that. NavyGuy suggested we see a movie, and I willingly went along with the plan since it was a flick I wanted to see (Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - good, but not the point of our story). I had a strict nine o'clock date with Jim from The Office, so we had to catch a matinee. The drive to Burlington can take anywhere from twenty minutes to forty-five minutes depending on the number of idiots on the road, so we had to leave early, lest we miss a preview. However, we got there quickly, and that gave us time to stop at the scrapbooking store, Pages in Time, located in Burlington (are you following the dots?). It's a small hole-in-the-wall shop that I hoped would yield unique finds not available at Michael's Crafts. NavyGuy stayed in the car (he was on a phone call with his dad and was devastated to have missed the scrapbook store experience), so I wandered in alone, unaware of the paper trap I was innocently stepping into.

The store seemed so innocent, so friendly and open. A decent amount of supplies, but as I started checking prices on the back of punches and stamp sets, I could feel my stomach start to turn. Meandering over to the paper stacks, a few shiny Halloween patterns caught my eye. How much could a couple sheets of paper cost? I flipped over the paper. No price sticker. Hmmm... maybe there's a price sign posted above the stack... nope... errr... okay, the saleslady is busy talking about church missions with the high school girl buying bulldog stickers, aw, I'll just get these couple sheets.

Now, you would think that when I got up to the counter, I would have asked for a price check before agreeing to trade a kidney for some paper. But, the last in the trio of deadly downfalls struck - the Catholic guilt. I already had the paper in my hand. It was a small shop - the saleslady was probably the owner! Oh jeez, and there's a picture of her granddaughter. She probably needs this income to be able to buy food for that little girl. Gosh, I can't ask her for the price, and then not buy the paper and walk out of here empty handed...

So now, instead of paying my phone bill this month - I got four pieces of Halloween themed paper! Agh!!!!! Plus, I spent so much damn money on them, I can't even bear to cut them up and use them for cards. I may have to just put them in frames and use them as wall art for the rest of my life. Sigh. What have we learned? 1) Do not let Mugs go into craft stores alone. 2) Catholic guilt never fully leaves a person regardless of how long it's been since she's gone to church. 3) Products should always be properly priced in stores, and this is why I usually stick to the big box stores that have clearly marked Dollar Spots!!!!!

Oh - this little story is why I already busted my budget for my $10 Halloween cards challenge. I will accept none of the blame, and will still be angling for extra money for the Thanksgiving decor. It's also why I don't have another finished Halloween card to post here tonight. Sorry. Complaints can be directed to NavyGuy, the Catholic church, and/or the proprietor of Pages in Time.


ebs handler October 10, 2008 at 4:17 AM  

Apparently not being connected to the world for the last month or so has left you blissfully unaware of "The Great Depression, the sequel". NEEDS , NOT WANTS are the consumer buzz words right now. (Although I am proud that the early Catholic years are still sticking!) Cutting coupons, not expensive scrap paper, might be more in line for the next trip to Burlington.
Only with your financial future in, mom

mugs018 October 10, 2008 at 10:26 AM  

Hello?!? I was trying to save money on my scrapbooking NEEDS! Don't worry - I found a coupon for Michael's online :)

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