The stacks of cranberry sauce, Stove Top stuffing, green beans, and chicken broth have donned the entrance of every grocery store you enter meaning Thanksgiving is surely on its way. This is a day of too much good food, family, games, and sporting events. Yes, I said events with an "s". For the men their contact sport is football. For women they prefer the yearly tradition of contact sport shopping on “Black Friday.” Never have you seen a grandma in a walker move so fast or a short lady reach to the top shelf in a single bound.

Stores entice shoppers with bargain prices for a few hours and it is the official kick-off of the holiday shopping season.

I have participated in this “fluff holiday”, defined by me as a date people recognize as something, however it has no historical significance, only once. I was conned by my mother that it would be great “mommy-daughter” time. Translation –You’re taller, you’ve got more reach, and I’m not carrying the heavy stuff you’re the youngin’.

So personally I want to participate in this tradition about as much as I want to volunteer for a root canal, but many of friends participate every year and IF I were to participate I would definitely  need a survival kit so for you’re reading enjoyment here it is.

What To Bring

  • Coffee - It must be hot, I must be at least a quad shot, and it is required to have enough sugar to make me gain at least 2 pounds instantly.
  • Budget Plan – I’d have to outline the budget before even attempting to participate, God knows I don’t need to come home with 20 Forever Lazy® and five pairs of Stompeez just because they were a a good deal  and their perfect for a party exchange gift that I don’t plan on attending.
  • Ads - Lots of stores will price match if it’s the same item exactly. Translation I only have to wait in one line that is longer than the line at “Splash Mountain” on a hot summer day. Note the lines wrap around the store, looks can be very deceiving.
  • Band-Aids and Instant Ice Packs – If you have ever came out on the wrong end of a 4 AM free-for-all for all the new gamming system, you completely understand these items. If not think psycho kitten that does NOT want picked up.
  • Water - Hydration is always important especially after the sprints. I’m thinking in a Camel Back, less hassle and keep your hands free for grabbing bargains.
  • Snacks - Must keep up energy resources. My suggestions protein bars, granola, and a piece of fruit.
  • Cell Phone - Not only can you use it to call 911 when “Granny” cart checks you and you break your ankle. It is also really useful as timer. Just use your alarm to tell you when it’s time to get in line, so you can make sure to get to the next store before the deals expire.
  • Cell Phone Charger – A dead phone is worthless. In you short trips in the car juice that baby back up.
  • Pen and Shopping List – A must. Again, stick to what you need a bargain is not a bargain if it is crap you don’t want or need anyways.

What to Wear

  • Shoes – Your most comfortable ones that stay firmly attached to your feet. Those Cha Cha heels may look fabulous with your sparkly jeans, however after standing in long lines and running from store to store your feet, ankles, calves, and knees will HATE you!
  • Clothing — Layers is the name of the game here. Make sure you have layers for temperatures Frostbite, Thaw, and I’m melting.

After Care

Personally I would need a long relaxing bath with Epson salts and lots of bubbles. Most likely a bottle of wine would be involved in the recoup also.

So obviously you won’t see me in the stores, but if you are so inclined I hope this survival kit and tips helps.