Saturday Sundries


Before Christmas I was involved in a Holiday Initiative Program where I was an “Elf”  assisting in organizing gifts for a Homeless Shelter and a toy drive for a school walking distance from where I live.

During the toy distribution at the school it was noticed that a lot of the kids were not wearing socks.  When the subject was brought up we were told that a horrifying number of the kids were routinely arriving at school without socks as they apparently did not own them.  So a sock drive was started this week.

This morning was my morning for buying socks.   When I stepped out the door there was a nice dusting of snow:

I had a new ATM card in my purse so stopped at the CVS first to get cash.  I inserted the brand new shiny card and got a super bright red screen:  This card can not be processed at this time.

This type of thing makes me look guilty of something immediately!   It was not helped by the fact that pressing the “cancel”  button and a few others did nothing to remove the incriminating screen.  (does it really have to be this bright shade of attention grabbing red!).

Under the watchful eye of the security guard I pull out a small pile of cards looking for the one that I know works –  I’m beginning to look as though I’ve raided some mailboxes in the neighbourhood!   {the real problem is that my bank has sent me so many cards recently that I can no longer remember which I’ve activated  to replace others and which I’ve reported as “lost”}

Finally successful at getting money I scurry away to ride the train to Marshall’s for the socks.  Their selection of socks was not that great, unless you wanted athletic sockette types, but I did find a dozen pairs of pretty girlie socks. 

You can’t really go to Marshall’s and not look around a bit so I wandered amongst the handbags, still looking for that perfect bag and then over to the household stuff to look at dessert plates because we don’t own any – we have 3 bread & butter plates but they are not pretty.   When we have visitors,  the only time we have sweets in this house,  I serve them in old Chinese bowls.

Recently we had a new guest and as I put the bowled-up blueberry pie infront of him he commented.  “I’ve never had pie in a bowl before”.  I wonder how many other guests have thought it was weird! 🙂

Well, I found some nice square plates at $1.99 each.   I intended walking the mile home

Shot taken walking home on another day

and  I thought to myself   “I don’t really want to carry 6 or 8 of these home.”    So,  I went to Sticky Fingers Bakery and bought a sticky bun instead.

Really good sticky bun!

When I got home I made coffee to go with my sticky bun and then thought   “I wish I’d bought those bloody plates!”




57 responses

    • Yes this is my favourite type of snow. Pretty in the morning and then all gone and dry by evening! The sticky bun comes from a vegan bakery – my favourite bakery! It always surprises me how good everything from here tastes without eggs or dairy.

  1. Wow. Now see if you’d found the perfect bag you could have carried your new plates home in that…and looked like you had just relieved marshalls of some property without the correct monetary transaction taking place. That would pair perfectly with your atm card issues earlier! Lovely socks by the way, kudos on your generosity.

    • LOL Pete – here in DC we have a charge for plastic bags so nearly everyone carries around “green” bags or struggles out of the shop with their hands full of items. I often wonder how the security guy at the door knows whether people have paid for these items or are stealing them – I have my receipt fluttering obviously in my hand as I leave a store like that. Then, when the manservant walks around a store he just puts his things straight into his green bag – this makes me extremely nervous as I’m always expecting him to get accused of shoplifting before he gets to the register!

  2. Delicious note ! …
    I saw little boys without socks in winter … I was waiting in a bank … The parents were negociating … they were not poor … They just did not realize that they have to keep the hands and the feet of their young boys, very warm.
    Formerly, a lot of kids died with pharingytisies and after that, acute reumathoid arthritis. To take care of the kids is the main prevention. You are a beautiful person for understanding the importance that a kid puts socks and giving your time for it.
    Have a nice day. Many loves

    • Thank you Apolline – I was surprised at how many children did not have socks! Their poor little feet! My grandmother used to tell me that if I went to bed with wet hair I would get rheumatoid arthritis in my neck! 🙂 (so far so good!)….

  3. I’ve heard that about socks before. Good on you for walking out in the cold and buying such adorable ones. The little girls with the warm stylish feet will be happy. You deserve the sticky bun.

    I wear socks pretty much 24/7 for 10-11 months of the year, so the thought of being without them in snow is horrifying.

    • I had not really given any thought to the issue of socks before and I guess a lot of people donate clothing items but don’t think about socks because they are sort of boring. Another item not often thought of is the humble bra. I can’t imagine having to put my cold feet into cold shoes without the buffer of socks.

  4. i prefer bowls. i think i’m down to 4 salad plates and a bazillion bowls. so invite me over for food any time!

    hard to hear that people are without socks in snow. that’s a charity drive i could get behind.

    do you ever see the tv ads about the group that collects/distributes shoes to school kids? I went to their website, planning to donate a bunch of shoes, but it was completely disorganized. they didn’t provide any info on how to donate. really bummed me out.

    • I like bowls but I’d never really thought about how strange it might be to serve a slice of pie in a bowl (as if we’re 3 years old! 🙂 )

      No, I haven’t seen an ad for the shoe project – it’s disappointing their website is so disorganized.
      I have a friend who has taught in the middle of no-where Australia for many years now (30??) . One day she sent a girl, “Mary”, home because she was at school without shoes on. The next day Mary was not at school and my friend asked Mary’s sister where she was. The sister replied that Mary was at home because my friend had told her not to come to school without shoes and it was not her turn to wear the shoes that week! Apparently they only had one pair of shoes between them – my friend went out and bought shoes for all the kids in her class that did not have any. That was in sunny Australia; I can’t imagine having no shoes in this country!

  5. LOL yeah some items just end up with our aura on them if we dont’ buy them. How nice that you provided kids with clothes – in this weather frostbite can set in very fast indeed with no socks – what a travesty! Socks are so cheap too – I have some I never used so I must find where to donate them!

    • Yes, I have to admit that I’ve never thought about donating socks at the same time I donate other things. They seem so boring but really they are so essential especially in winter. This is an elementary school so it seems quite shocking that so many little kids are without socks. I need to find some boy’s socks too – I will probably try Target for them tomorrow.

    • PS: Getting my son to wear socks is almost a daily battle. He’s had the same six pairs of fluorescent footie types for three years because they’re the only ones he’ll wear (grudgingly). They may see action once a week in winter and ONLY in winter.

    • LOL – that sticky bun was busting to get into my tummy that’s for sure! Luckily it fitted on one of the crappy old bread & butter plates – though I would’ve eaten it from the paper bag if forced 🙂

      That’s funny about your son! I remember my two boys being like that – and my eldest (26) is probably still wearing his!

  6. A person who’s never eaten pie from a bowl has probably never had pie alamode….what a horribly sheltered individual.

    I hope the children get lots and lots and lots of fuzzy warm socks.

  7. You are so sweet to have gone to Marshall’s to buy cute black and pink socks for girls. I tend to be utilitarian in shopping for kids and probably would have bought them all bulk packages of running socks. It’s probably why my children hate shopping now: I made them think buying clothes was a bore.

    As for the plates, my younger daughter taught me this trick: if you see something you like at a place like Marshall’s, but can’t afford it or can’t take it home that day, stuff the item in a back shelf and hide it until you can come back and get it. It sounds mean, but things at Marshall’s tend to move quickly and there’s a strong likelihood your item won’t be there when you return.

    Of course, if you didn’t really want those plates—well, walking saved you from making an unnecessary purchase.

    • LOL re the boring shopping! you can get more with your money that way (sensible) but I tend to buy what I would like to receive (bright and cheery and a bit frivolous). I have to get some boy’s socks during the week and will probably go with the boring for them..

      LOL @ hiding things. I’ve found items in strange places that people must’ve hidden! Like a crockpot behind chocolates! LOL.

  8. Rheumatoid arthritis looked like angina but caused cardiac injuries. Children died suddenly specially girls, but boys too. It’s important not to leave such a disease come back. Your funny socks are very important ! :))

  9. I had to laugh at the “not wanting to carrying those plates home”. I lost count on how often I have procrastinated doing something because I was too lazy to carry it and then wanted to beat myself afterward for not doing it.
    The human mind is a quizzical thing. One should just do it and be done. It’s so much more satisfying.

    • Oh – you are absolutely right! And, it’s like when you are looking for a certain type of skirt and you find one you like in the *first* shop but then insist on going to 6 more shops to compare it before you end up back at that first place 3 hours later!

  10. Happy New Year, Emjay!

    I like eating dessert in bowls- it makes spooning up that last bit of goodness so much easier. (Marshalls is fun, though, so go back and buy the bloody plates!)

  11. What a nice thing to do. And how many times do we walk past people and not even notice. I feel guilty because I have on two pairs of socks. Each little thing like this, each kindness gets amlified. Perhaps by us reading this we will each reach out in some way and make the same sort of impact.

    • I’ve found that my old vox neighbours are all wonderfully community minded. There are so many worthy causes. We had a donor give $200 towards socks today! That should cover a lot of little feet.

  12. haha! love the plate stuff.
    That is so sad about the kids without socks, and really cool that you guys had a sock drive for it. Well done!
    We got about 3 inches of snow yesterday, I heard NJ got it worse at the beach.

    • When I looked in the sock “basket” today there was a wonderful collection so people have been generous. I’m going back to Marshall’s on the w/end to see if the plates are still there – or maybe some others I like. That way if you ever make it back to DC I’ll have something to serve you a cupcake on! 🙂

  13. Very thoughtful gesture with the socks Emjay. Living in the bush, I tend to forget how many people are doing it tough living on the streets in our cities.

    • In winter it is easier, I think, to not notice what others do or don’t have on their feet as we rush about trying to get indoors. I know that my own attention is on keeping my feet out of black ice!

    • I am going back this w/end and hope the plates are still there. I should’ve taken HG’s advice and hidden them in some under-visited area of the store. I’m on a silly get-healthy kick – if I’d got the plates it would’ve been far too easy to think I “couldn’t” walk that day – says she how bought a big, fattening sticky bun! LOL.

  14. LOL!!! Really?! A lot of them weren’t wearing socks?! >.< It's amazing how cold you could get without socks, too. If my feet are cold, I'm cold. Those socks are really cute!

  15. How kind of you to buy socks for those kids! Amazing that they have no socks but what horrible parents (if they can afford them and neglect their kids). LOL with the plates – go get them! Phone them up or something. I collect mine from charity shops. I am now collecting Pearson’s pottery, only the stuff I will actually use. Their bowls make great bunny bowls.
    I would love to mail you a plate but I would worry it would get broken.

    • These sticky buns are the best I’ve ever had (and I’ve experimented for years! 🙂 ). My area is quite depressed economically – DC schools provide meals for kids as many times it’s the only food they get (one of the reasons DC is reluctant to close for snow etc). I see a lot of people in my supermarket with food stamps – I’m not sure whether they cover things like socks and underwear which is also sold in the supermarket. Pearson’s pottery makes some very nice things! It would be cool if you came across something made in the 1800’s….. 🙂

      • um, no. Food stamps only cover food items. They don’t cover precooked food items either like Rotisserie chickens in the deli or Birthday cakes and stuff in the bakery. They are strictly for food. However, you can buy sodas and candy and any junk food so I think a lot of money probably gets wasted on that kind of stuff. I get them and I can tell you that I definitely wouldn’t make it right now without them.

        Ms. Donna also loaded us all three up on socks this winter. She has more clothes than I’ve ever seen one person have. I helped her cleaning stuff out one day and she must own 500 pairs of socks herself. She sent me home with probably 100 pairs of socks for me and the girls plus she bought both of them more socks for Christmas. Our feet definitely stay warm here now…lol

      • We have a similar problem here in my parents’ neighborhood. For a number of children in the area the meals they serve at the public schools are the only real food they get. It would be nice if public assistance had a clothing allowance for basics as well. I don’t know how someone can get through the winter without socks. I saw children playing outdoors during the winter break in flipflops, and I wondered if it was by choice—some kids, like mine, absolutely will not wear shoes if they can get away with it—or if that was the only footwear in the house. Or if their parents were like my father’s, who during the Depression reserved shoes for school and church days. When he went outside to play, he either had to go out barefoot, or wear these old boots that belonged to his father. He said he preferred going barefoot, because the boots were so big he would trip in them.

      • 1800s, that’s practically new over here. LOL! Seriously. When we ripped up the carpet in our bedroom, Masha was disappointed. “Oh, it’s just some of that Victorian pine.” (the other bedrooms have wide walnut planks that are much older).
        I taught high school for a year in a disadvantaged school. It is amazing that such a rich country has some very poor residents. Hey – I sound like a left wing socialist! Shut me up!

    • That’s the sort of snow I like best – all pretty in the morning and then melted and mostly evaporated (no black ice) by nightfall. The cinnamon rolls from Sticky Fingers Bakery are the best I’ve had – sooooo good!

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