Monday, January 19, 2009

1/19/09 Photo shopping

Katrina had a temperature last night, so I took the day off with her. I'd already committed the boys to Tonya's and playdates with the White kids, so I happily spent a day alone with Katrina. "Happily" includes expecting and bracing myself for the usual fusses and conflict, and she didn't disappoint. But, most of the day she played happily, chatting and even singing, checking in on me and telling me what color crayon she was using now. I loved that. Quantity time.

I can't imagine whatever possessed me, but I took Katrina to, of all places, a mall this morning. I really, truly hate malls, but the surprised expressions I get from people when I spit with distaste about them makes me think maybe I'm being too harsh. And some stores are located only in malls, such as Pottery Barn Kids. I wanted to check out some things I'd seen in the catalog, and this seemed as good a time as any.

So I put my toddler in a stroller and pushed her around a mall.

I quelled the immediate irritation about having a hard time finding the store, and outdated directories with place numbers that aren't on the map don't help. Katrina liked PB Kids immediately and insisted on getting out of the stroller, complicating my shopping. Clinginess is not one of her virtues.

I shop with my camera. It helps me remember what I saw that I liked, and puts it in a context I can remember. A photo in a store can give you a much better idea of how big something is than a catalog photo or a measuring tape. Photos remind me of small details too, like, "oh yeah, I didn't like the way those drawers opened."

So I went about my usual perusing, taking a photo here and there, digitally filing away ideas. "Can I help you find anything, ma'am?" asked a salesclerk, not smiling and not all that helpfully. I told her I was just looking for ideas. "We don't allow photography in the store," she explained, with a very slight scolding tone. "You're kidding," I said in a scoff. "Whatever." I packed up Katrina and left. It was hard to storm out in a dignified way though, since Katrina didn't approve at all of this turn of events, and cried and screamed the entire way back through the mall, and all the way home.

I can't stand those anachronistic policies. There are far, far more subtle ways of spying on other stores these days, and it's not like storefronts are all that make a company competitive anyway. What, if I were spying I'd be holding a camera out in plain view? I wish I'd told her, "But my bosses at Restoration Hardware told me to get some pictures, they're thinking of opening a kids' store."

So, in protest, I post my contraband for all to see. This probably does more to promote than demote the store -- and isn't that the point, you morons?

Katrina loved this little push-truck toy. I was proud of her, in a store filled with froofy girl stuff, she went straight for the truck.

I had to wake her up from a nap at 4:45 to pick up her brothers, who were engrossed in a Pictionary game. She peered at them with curiosity from outside the window.

I like Land of Nod better anyway. And they're not in any malls around here.


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