Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here OR Clothes Shopping with Boys

I took the boys shopping for jeans today.

Twice a year, Darling Husband’s mom and I take the boys for our trudge through the deepest sub-basement of the underworld known as Buying Clothes for Boys Who Aren’t Yet Interested in Girls.

I mean, you do understand that my boys are #1. boys, #2. still think girls have cooties, and #3 are homeschooled, don’t you?  This means there is no lovely peer pressure to get them out of their favorite ratty, holey, high water jeans.  I really wish those kids at the homeschool co-op would be a little more mean.  What’s a mom do to when there aren’t little hooligan bullies at school to make the kids conform already??  Come on, surely there’s a Mean Girl or two?  No.  They’re all just so stinking nice at co-op and don’t care what anyone wears.

It’s all up to Meanie Mom to throw away their treasured garments during one of her random “you guys look like Dickensian orphans in your tattered rags, I can’t take it anymore” sprees of destruction. Look, I don’t know what happens in your home, but in my home when the bottom half of the legs of the jeans are holding on by 8 little threads because the hole in the knee got soooo big, the jeans get thrown away.

In the past our shopping sprees in the lake of fire would start out merrily enough.  The boys would silently disappear into the clothing racks, just long enough to make me wonder if they really were kidnapped this time.  It would take a moment for Mom and I to notice the sudden blissful silence.  After a moment of bopping our heads along to an instrumental version of “Like a Virgin” being played on the Sears intercom,  I’d rouse enough to say, “Where are the boys?”  “Weren’t you watching them?”  “I thought you were.”  “Boys, where are you?”  Silence.  “Boys??  You’d better come out now, or I’ll never feed you a McDonald’s chicken nugget ever again.”  (No, not that!  Anything but that!)

Usually, once Mom and I gathered the clothes, that was when the boys’ horrified disbelief would set in.  “What?  We have to try them on?  Are you kidding me?”  Boy10 would hide in his fitting room secretly playing his DS until I would wise up and take it away.

By the time we’re done herding them through the store and confusing each other with which boy tried on what in which size or color, it was enough to make me want to sign us up at the local nudist colony.

So, this year, I did it differently.

This year, I gathered up Boy7 and drove 10 minutes up the road to the Gettysburg Outlets.  Just me and Boy7.  Alone.

We stepped into Old Navy where I made him try on the:

size 8 cargo pants

size 7 cargo pants

size 7 slim regular jeans

size 7 regular regular jeans

size 7 skinny jeans

size 8 skinny jeans

size 7 regular loose fit jeans

size 7 regular bootcut jeans

size small sweat pants

size medium sweat pants

size small t-shirt

size small sweater

This wasn’t done in one sitting.  This involved me leaving him in his fitting room and getting new clothes every now and then.   He was ok with that because I let him play the DS while I found the clothes.  I was ok with that because I read my book while he changed outfits.

The woman manning the fitting room was cheery and helpful.

I paid for his clothes, bought him a little treat, drove back home, dropped him off, picked up Boy10, drove back to Gettysburg and we started all over again.

size 8 cargo pants

size 10 cargo pants

size 10 slim regular jeans

size 8 slim regular jeans

size 8 skinny jeans

size 10 skinny jeans

size 8 slim loose fit jeans

size 8 slim bootcut jeans

size small sweat pants

size medium sweat pants

size 8 slim corduroy pants

Again, I had to go back and forth bringing him various clothing combinations.  He played the DS in the downtimes, I read my book.  Happy, happy family.

But here’s the funny part: the woman manning the fitting room.

The woman manning the fitting room didn’t realize that I had tried on clothes with Boy7, bought the clothes, stopped for a treat, drove home and back, and then starting trying on more clothes with a different boy. 

All she knew was that she saw me arrive at 1:00 and put a boy in the fitting room, and didn’t remove a boy until 5:30.  She missed the whole “Return with a New Boy” part.

By the time we left, her cheery questions of, “Finding everything ok?” had turned into serious queries as to the state of my health, “Are you ok?  I mean, really—are you ok?  Are you having trouble finding something?  Is there anything I can do to help you?”

I considered telling her about the two boys, but then figured, who am I to take the sense of wonder and mystery out of her life?

Maybe she can go home and blog about the crazy parents who leave their kids in the fitting room, trying on clothes all day long.

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6 thoughts on “Abandon All Hope, Ye Who Enter Here OR Clothes Shopping with Boys

  1. I absolutely adore when helpful people get confused. Mostly because it happens to me every single day of my life. It’s nice to see I’m not alone. LOL

    • That could be worse. The boys flop to the ground and refuse to move, but there are those certain types of girls who would actually want to try on all the clothes in the entire store.

      Come to think of it, I’m not sure what’s worse.

  2. lol I took one of my friends shopping at a jeans store in the morning and then later brought my youngest sister to the same store, thank goodness they didn’t think I was insane and could tell my friend apart from my sister 😀 although my sister didn’t know her size so I had to do the whole well you’re not as skinny as Emily but you’re skinnier than me so you must a size ___ game, it worked!!!

    • I try to do that! Like, I had that dress to give away, but I didn’t think it would fit any of my friends. It turns out that someone thought their daughter would like it. I hadn’t even thought about her daughter, but if I had, I probably would have realized the dress would fit the daughter. And then, my friend Mary said she might like to have it.

      I hadn’t considered Mary because she’s very thin and I thought the size would be too big for her. But Mary is very tall. It turns out that very tall people take larger sizes because of their height and proportions–they’re thin, but they’re thin for 6’11, so they require a larger size. I hadn’t factored that in.

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