Tag Archives: shopping

Spring Shopping

20 Mar

Do you remember when The Mall at Short Hills was an outdoor shopping plaza? Yesterday, while surveying the beautiful stores for spring clothes with my daughter, Sandra, I recalled touring the mall with my mom.

I certainly wish she could see it now! Back in the 1970s, the mall was an outdoor series of connected stores, anchored by Bloomingdales and B. Altman. Now going to the mall is a spontaneous stop in the middle of our busy days. Back then it was a trip saved for special occasion shopping. When it was time to find a fancy dress for the annual dinner dance, a relative’s Bat Mitzvah or wedding AND when we exhausted all nearby and more economical shops, off we went to Short Hills. After the mall’s original enclosure, it continued to be a collection of exclusive shops and mostly an impractical venue for our budget. We were used to central Jersey’s Woodbridge Center and the Brunswick Square Mall.  There we could find bargains and enjoy a special Fribble at Friendly’s. At The Mall at Short Hills, we would be exhausted combing the sale racks and settle for a cookie from a bakery. We could not afford the time or the three course meals at the only two (and fancy) restaurants.

Yesterday, while filling a dressing room with new and trendy spring clothes, Sandra and I were treated to complimentary cookies in Bloomingdales.  Sunlight poured through the ceiling windows and helped put a spotlight on Aritzia’s window’s mannequins. I could hear my teenage oohs and aahs as clearly as I spotted Sandra’s obsession with the latest Ray Ban’s.

For me, strolling through the mall with Sandra can turn into a trip down memory lane. I truly hope that mother/daughter shopping trips continue to be a fundamental custom for all women! What are your special memories of shopping with your mom? Do you visit some of the same spots with your daughter?

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A Whole Foods Adventure

15 Mar

I wish my mom could come to Whole Foods with me! Today, while waiting my turn at the Deli Counter, I enjoyed eavesdropping on a pregnant woman shopping with her mother. They looked at products together, tasted samples and chatted while waiting in line. As I watched and listened, I thought about those mundane activities, like food shopping with our moms, that we probably take for granted. And I thought about how my mother used whole wheat flour before it was readily available, roasted soybeans before most people had even heard of them and evaluated ingredients before they were mandated on all packages. Whole Foods might have been her dream food market. She would not have liked the prices, but she would have loved the products and philosophy.

It is easy to have fun in a market like Whole Foods and that makes it easier to fantasize about shopping there with my mother. While my reality sets in, I choose to look fondly on those women taking advantage of these opportunities. Instead of being filled with sadness that my mother and I each were deprived of such a simple pleasure, this is one of those instances in which I live vicariously. And, it is one of those activities that does make me wonder, is it as much fun as it looks? When does food shopping with your mom become more of a chore than a pleasure? Or, is life so busy that most do not even get the chance to find that out? What inspires you to share ordinary activities with your mom or just daydream about these adventures you did or would experience?