Merry Christmas

Its early on Christmas day, and I have not been this excited since I was a kid. I had grown to really not like this season of the year. Now I once again have captured the spirit, I can once again feel like celebrating. My life changed a lot this year, I had lots of ups and more down that I would like to remember. The important thing is that the ups have eclipsed the downs and I am starting a new year with lots to be thankful for.

I want to wish you all a Merry Christmas, may your wishes come true like mine have!

Online vs The Mall

Over the last couple of years I have flip-flopped between online shopping and taking a trip to the mall for buying Christmas presents. Last year 90% of my shopping was done via online stores but this year I moved back to the mall. During the year I buy a lot online, anything that requires power is pretty much purchased on an online store. Books surprisingly enough are almost an even split because I do like to visit the bookstore as well as Amazon.

I do not like shopping unless it is for electronic gadgets, computer parts or video games. When it comes to buying presents for the holiday season the frugal part of my brain shuts down. A week before I would have tried to save even a dollar on a cooling fan, but I refuse to go from one retail store to the next one to see if I can find a comparable piece of clothing for a better price. Comparative shopping is a lot simpler online, but there are some products that I rather see in person no matter how good the picture is online.

This year online sales broke records. My shopping was obviously not included in those numbers since I went to the actual mall. The only thing that I wish I would have bought online was a Walkman for my Dad. I know, why not an MP3 player, lets just say he is old school and if I said MP3 he would probably tell me to go wash my mouth with soap.

I can spend hours surfing several retailers looking for the best price, but in a mall I want to get what I came for and get out. I did actually spend some extra time with a couple of gifts, but for the most part it was quick lucky shopping. When in a mall I shop as efficiently as possible, online I take my time.

Today consumers are a little less afraid of using the computer as a shopping tool. Even though identity theft is on the rise, people are using their mouse and keyboard instead of their legs to do their shopping. Maybe some of my problem has to deal with the crowds. People running into you with their carts, not respecting your personal space, or just overall acting like you are in their way.

I have in the past mixed the two. I ride motorcycles and you cannot beat the prices for them online. What I do is go to the local motor sports shop and try some helmet on, and then purchase it online for a fraction of the price. It is a sure way to know that the helmet you are ordering is going to fit comfortably.

You can say I chose the worst time of the year to visit the mall, but regardless of the crowds the opportunity to get a better deal online is enough to make me want to go that route. Also it is hard to replace actually seeing and touching the merchandise that you are going to purchase. If both places would offer the same price I would keep on going to the mall for quite some time.


Well, after an excellent weekend in Chicago visiting family and friends, the drive back was not fun though. The highway back to Michigan we got stranded on the shut down highway.

It was something that I have never seen before. Cars covered in snow to the point that they did not even look like cars but just like little mountains of snow. Getting to Midland from Chicago takes about 5 hours, butwe had to take a detour of about 4 hours. Not only did we take 2 hours to move about 10 miles, but the detour South and then East was also covered with snow.


“If we begin with certainties, we shall end in doubts; but if we begin with
doubts, and we are patient in them, we shall end in certainties.”
— Sir Francis Bacon

Webster defines the word doubt as to lack confidence in, distrust, to consider unlikely. Doubt seems to be such a negative thing when looked at it from just a definition standpoint. But is doubt really all that bad. I think doubt has potential to be bad, but it also has the potential to be good.

When entering situations in life it is always to be cautious. To have doubt is not a bad thing, to be doubtful in the other had can be disastrous. I think with doubt comes caution, a smart thing when entering new situations.

The quote posted today talks about the subject in a positive way. Even though it comes at the subject from the confidence side, I think it addresses doubt positively instead of confidence negatively. What do you think? Is doubt a factor in your life?