Christmas Shopping – Check!

This has been a very busy weekend. Mike and I took the bus to Tukwila to visit the Westfield Mall on Thursday after I got out of work. We’re scaling back on Christmas presents this year for financial reasons, but we are still getting some presents, and the Westfield Mall seemed like it would be a great place to find presents. We hopped on the bus downtown and headed south. We had been to Westfield Mall very briefly before. It’s very impressive… overwhelming actually. It was like a Christmas village inside of a building, and every time Mike and I went around a corner, it felt like we were looking at an endless, lighted, crowded aisle of a whole new mall. Mike and I walked all through the mall looking for presents.

Some of the highlights:
* Finding a birthday present we both really liked for Mabel
* Walking through an art gallery in the mall; the paintings in there were so striking I almost forgot about financial difficulties. What’s wrong with buying a $3200 painting when the colors are vivid and just looking at it transports your mind to an entirely different place?
* Browsing the Fossil line of purses in Macy’s. Did Fossil ever make a bad purse? No. Most emphatically no. 🙂
* We went to Borders twice (we never claimed to be efficient Christmas shoppers!) and the second time the cashier recognized me from the first time. He looked at my credit card and then glanced at my Amazon badge around my neck that had my work alias on it (karena). “So is your name Karen or Karena?” he asked, comparing my work alias with the name on the credit card. “Karen,” I said. “The badge name is just my work name.” “Oh.” He nodded understandingly. “Yeah. I wouldn’t want the people I work with knowing my real name either.” What? What was that supposed to mean? Bizarre.

The mall closed at 10pm and we were there till the very end. Then, as the stores closed and the only things still open were the anchor restaurants and bars, we headed back downtown.

We got some things bought, but we still had shopping left to do, so we decided to try out our luck at the Pacific Place Mall downtown on Friday night. There’s also another smaller mall right across the street from it. We spent all Friday evening walking through those malls looking for presents. By 10pm Friday night we had almost all of our Christmas presents and were pretty exhausted. We ate in the food court on the top floor of one of the malls, and we got to watch the elevated trains go by right outside the window about 5 feet from us. Pretty cool. 🙂
Highlights:
* Yummy tabbouli salad from the food court (I love how much ethnic food there is out here!)
* A talkative Starbucks barista recounting to us how someone tried to steal the tips from their tip jar and a friend of hers kicked him in the groin in the parking lot afterwards. Wow. Hard lines. Anyone who was considering stealing tips from Starbucks baristas… take heed. They’re apparently a tough bunch. 🙂
* Seeing a street musician playing Christmas carols on a violin in front of the mall.

Walking back, we enjoyed the street musicians and all the people walking along the downtown streets.

Saturday morning was gorgeous and sunny. I took a couple pictures walking back from the grocery store.

Coming down to Seattle from Capitol Hill - Notice the mountains!

The Space Needle and the Mountains

Last one…

Looking downtown Seattle from the Bridge Over I-5

Almost all of our Christmas shopping was done, but we still needed one or two more things. Therefore on Saturday afternoon (Day 3 of Christmas shopping, for those keeping count), we made the trek up to Capitol Hill and checked out some shopping in that area. It was raining hard, and even with our Helly Hansons and an umbrella it was a wet walk. Nevertheless, we persevered. Since it’s been snowing for the last couple weeks in the midwest, I feel a little wimpy complaining about rain. Again, some highlights from the trip:
* Finding a fun little Seattle toystore
* Discovering a record store that catered to DJs and had mixing records and turntables. Mike really liked this discovery. 🙂
* Learning that there is a Panera Bread here! I hadn’t seen one before, but now that I know it’s there I’m sure I’ll be back periodically. 🙂

On the roster for today:
* Finish my Christmas cards. I’m so close to being done!
* Pick up one final Christmas present in Capitol Hill
* Continue organizing things. My apartment is starting to look more put together, but it still needs work. Mike’s still needs a lot of work.

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