First, thanks for the swell advice on how to deal with my presumptuous acquainance. They ranged from polite to witty to straightforward. Everyone's blogger brains were in full gear yesterday!
On the No-Target front, I saved considerable money buying batteries and lightbulbs and other miscellany at the local hardware store. Sometimes the same brands, sometimes a better brand, all less money. I still haven't found a local pharmacy, however. Walgreens has taken over every street corner from here to Oshkosh and any remaining outposts owned by a little guy are located waaaaaay off of my beaten path and I hate driving out of my way. Mostly because I hate to drive. But according to my accounting I'm saving money on No Target, not always because of the price of the things I need being lower at other stores, but because I am not prone to impulse shop at these stores in a way that Target encourages. In Target I walk past ladies apparel (first department when I enter the store) and new t-shirts and cute purses scream to me. I pick one up and think, "hmmm, $17.48. That's not a bad deal." And so it goes. A fun new picture frame, new potholders that are much cuter than my old ones, a new garden hose. I buy these extras not because I need them, but because I'm there and they're there and gee, wouldn't it be nifty to take them home with me and make my house/life/appearance more spiffy?
Mr. T brought home a packet from Activate Fox Cities! yesterday. I've heard friends talk about these initiatives. Children bring home from school packets for the "family" to do together to encourage a healthier lifestyle/more reading/less TV watching. The trouble with these "family programs" is that they're really just extra work for who? Mom. In this case, Me. I need to post the calendar on our fridge each month and I need to sit down with Travis and write out our family's goals and I need to check off the goals as we achieve them and I need to remind/threaten/implement the goals before the month is up and we get another calendar.
In this month's calendar (the focus is on Healthy Eating) we're supposed to keep daily fat totals between 20-30% of our total calories on Jan. 16th. Use a wok on the 30th. Keep away from "hidden fats" on the 26th. Present one fruit and vegetable at EVERY meal and snack on the 21st. Who is supposed to do these things? Why, the primary food preparer, of course. Mom. And who conceives these brilliant ideas? Middle-aged male administrators sitting around a board room table eating donuts and drinking coffee. So unless Mr. T begs me on bended knee to participate, I'm tossing Activate Fox Cities! into the recycling bin. I'm not about to start counting calories and calculating fiber grams for each family member. My family's eating habits are actually quite healthy. I don't need to "use sugared cereal as a topper to sweeten low sugar cereal" because I don't buy sugared cereal in the first place! I wish these committees and boards and panels would spend a fraction of the effort spent on these "initiatives" instead on developing a richer curriculum while my child is in school. Or streamlining procedures for teachers. Or making the use of technology in schools more effective and efficient. Or even taking the money spent on these "initiatives" and putting them toward our underfunded classrooms. That would be a plan I'd sign on to!