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381st Friday Blog Roundup

Another new food store opened in our tiny town.  This is the fifth supermarket within a mile of one another.  Some are literally next door to one another — enormous brick food-filled monstrosities sitting side by side.  Four of these stores sell the exact same things.  The same Jif, the same butter lettuce, the same Fage yogurt.  Every once in a while, you’ll find an item that is only carried in one store or another, but for the most part, they are interchangeable.  The fifth store overlaps with the other four, but it also carries many specialty items.  The aisles are arranged according to food allergies and special diets, which saves a lot of time since you know any item you find in your aisle likely fits into your diet.  You can go shop in the vegan section and skip the rest of the store.  Or shop in the egg-allergy section and never come face-to-face with a cookie you can’t have.  Clever idea.

But really, there is no reason for our tiny town to have five food stores.

The new store opened with a lot of fanfare.  Coupons, balloons, banners.  When I pulled into my usual food store this morning, the parking lot was empty, and it wasn’t until I got out of my car that I realized why — everyone was at the new food store.  My parking lot was empty, but the lot next door was packed with cars.  It was a very Sneetch-y moment, where it felt like all the cars in the other parking lot were having a wiener roast and we weren’t because there were no stars upon thars.  Except, you know, I could have gone over to the other store and joined in the festivities.  But I didn’t.  Because it’s just a food store with the exact same products as the store with the empty lot.

I am absolutely a creature of habit.  I eat the same meals over and over again.  If I like a brand, I will buy it regardless of the price.  I frequent the same places even if they’re not convenient.  I am not a fan of trying something new if the present option works even somewhat.  Apparently, I am the only person who behaves this way in my town because I pretty much had the entire food store to myself.

When I went to check out, I realized that I had lost the coupon I had been carrying through the store.  I almost never use coupons, so I was pissed off that I had made a huge effort to remember this slip of paper and had somehow lost it between the front door and the cash register.  But this is the advantage to being a creature of habit — the cashier shrugged her shoulders and said, “Mel, I trust you.  I’m taking the money off without the coupon.”  Because she knows I’m an enormous flake.  Because she knows I rarely use coupons therefore would pay attention to the fact I had one this closely.  Because she knows I’m honest.

That’s the advantage to shopping in the same place several times a week for many years.  I know all the employees and they know me.  So, yes, I could have gone to the new store and gotten 20% off my grocery bill, but the people there don’t know that I like all my vegetables in the same bag.  They don’t ask me how yoga is going.  They don’t trust me when I tell them that I had a coupon and lost it.

By the way, I found the coupon the moment I got home inside one of my shopping bags, stuck to a can of crushed tomatoes.


I finished my limerick for Lori’s Limerick Chick contest.  I feel like this may be my year to win (yes, she does have prizes).  This is because I have cleverly lined up six votes for meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.  How did I do that, you ask?  By placing six bloggers in my limerick instead of the minimal one.  These people have to vote for me — because a vote for me is a vote for themselves.  Yes, I really did put this much thought into it.

When a blogger barrels for votes like a powerful twister
She links to many of her ALI sisters
Project Progeny to Jen to Bio
Queenie and Eden and Keiko
A cheap act (you said it, mister)

Vote for me, vote for me!


And now the blogs…

But first, second helpings of the posts that appeared in the open comment thread last week as well as the week before.  In order to read the description before clicking over, please return to the open thread:

Okay, now my choices this week.

Birch and Maple has post about the end of her FET, how she thought she’d feel vs. what is going through her mind.  It is the continuous readjustment to a new reality — one where the future looks wholly different from how she imagined it to be.  When she mourns the end of the cycle, it isn’t just about the FET.  It’s about the magical thinking, the sibling for her child, the vision she had of her future or her child’s future after she is gone.  It’s a brief, heartbreaking post.

Family Building with a Twist has a post on a day in the life of a work-outside-the-home mum.  It’s an exhausting schedule when she’s feeling well; too much when she’s sick too.  She writes, “Birth and death and sickness and health and change and carpet beetles cycle around and around. Lately I feel like I’m constantly moving and running and getting nowhere, especially during times like this. Exhausted, I wonder why I bother. I gave up ambitions of setting the world on fire years ago; I’m just a rat in a cage.”  Go read the whole post.

Lastly, Stumbling Gracefully has a thought-provoking post about grief appropriation.  Actually, I think it’s a really important read, especially in a community such as ours where we care deeply about one another.  At most, we are a blogger or two removed from everyone else in the ALI blogosphere.  And we mourn each other’s losses.  She writes: “I understood his concern; he has seen me react poorly to the sad stories of many a blogger I hardly knew, he’s watched me internalize their tragedy and grief, twisting it into fear of the uncertainty of my own life.”  She asks hard questions about the grief we feel over other people’s losses.

The roundup to the Roundup: There’s a benefit to being terrible with change.  Vote for my limerick!  And lots of great posts to read.  So what did you find this week?  Please use a permalink to the blog post (written between February 17th and February 24th) and not the blog’s main url. Not understanding why I’m asking you what you found this week?  Read the original open thread post here.


1 HereWeGoAJen { 02.24.12 at 8:35 am }

You’re right, it worked. I will totally vote for you.

2 Chickenpig { 02.24.12 at 9:26 am }

There is an ooold grocery store right across the street from us. We shop there all the time. Sometimes the sales are good, they have nice cuts of meat and locally grown produce. (and locally produced honey, maple products, eggs, and raw milk and raw milk cheeses I might add). And the cashiers know us by name! Not only that, but when I bring my daughter in and she puts her ‘special chocolate’ on the counter, the ppl at the register say “I know someone who has pooped in the potty!!!” and moon over her like she’s a princess. I can also run into everyone in town there on a Wed. night, including the First Selectman. 🙂 It is one of the good parts about small town living that I like.

3 a { 02.24.12 at 10:13 am }

We do not have a grocery store in my town. The next two towns north have all of their shopping district in one place. Inside one mile, you will find 4 grocery stores, all the fast food, most of the chain restaurants, the Walmart, the Target, the Home Dept which is right next to the Lowe’s, Petco and Petsmart, Sears Hardware, Kohl’s, and more. I don’t know who their town planners are, but they certainly like things centrally located. I think they are clueless about traffic, but it’s sleepy suburbia and they don’t expect it to get any worse. A few of the cashiers at one grocery store know me, but I am more a creature of whim than of habit (at least, when it comes to grocery shopping), so I make the rounds. And sometimes I go to the next town south because I like the stores’ arrangements a little better.

And I’m feeling kinda lazy, so I don’ t have the links. But everything that caught my interest this week, you wrote about here. So add everything you wrote this week. 🙂

4 Lori Lavender Luz { 02.24.12 at 11:05 am }

You find new ways to be uber-clever all. the. time. FANTASTIC!

Helpful post for adoptive parents: http://badmovietitlehere.blogspot.com/2012/02/question-adoptees-place-in-both.html

5 Rachel @ Eggs In A Row { 02.24.12 at 11:56 am }

I have two. 1) http://jjiraffe.wordpress.com/2012/02/21/flattened/

This post was perfectly worded, as most of Jjiraffe’s are. 🙂

And 2)

I’m going to pimp my own post for the fact that I want people to answer my questions about loss and how people helped them/could of helped them.

I love your limerick!

6 k { 02.24.12 at 2:37 pm }

I’d like to cautiously and shyly submit my own post: http://loveandchaosreign.wordpress.com/2012/02/19/left-behind/

I’ve had many people tell me it resonated with them, so if it resonates with more people that would be great. It’s always good to know you’re not alone.

7 Sarah { 02.24.12 at 2:42 pm }

Oh my god, it absolutley just MADE MY DAY to be in the Limerick! Like seriously, I could not possibly have gotten any more joy out of that little surprise. But I am confused on how I go about voting for you… does it not start until the 4th!


8 loribeth { 02.24.12 at 3:46 pm }

I tend to be very much a creature of habit too, & not just in the grocery store. I can’t say I know the clerks at my supermarket very well, but the big advantage is it’s in a strip plaza (along iwht a drug store, bank, dry cleaner, dollar store, pizza & sub outlets, etc.), just a hop, skip & a jump from our house — very convenient.

I may have more to add later, but I just read and had to share this beautiful post from Mrs. Spit, about coming to the aid of a neophyte traveller at the airport:


9 loribeth { 02.24.12 at 3:47 pm }

* iwht = with. How the heck did I do that??

10 Justine { 02.25.12 at 12:50 am }

Don’t know if it counts for this week, but Trinity wrote an awesome post about how bloggers might take care of themselves, and about the importance of setting boundaries so that we don’t burn out: http://andtherewerethree.wordpress.com/2012/02/25/safeguarding-the-delicate-places/

11 St. Elsewhere { 02.25.12 at 2:02 am }

There’s a post that hit me hard. It’s from Mo. Her lines really hit home: “And the kindest irony: when it does happen to you, it’s actually not as scary as you imagined it would be.”

Also, the promise she made to her little boy. The promise is not as difficult as the reason that moved her to make such a promise.

The link is: http://mommyodyssey.wordpress.com/2012/02/23/meaning/

I like your limerick….

12 Esperanza { 02.25.12 at 5:33 pm }

Thanks for including me in the round up. Always an honor.

I can’t believe your town can sustain five grocery stores. In SF there are the big behemoths like Safeway and Trader Joes and then tons of corner stores that sell the crappiest kind of everything for way more than the big stores do. I do almost all my shopping at Safeway except they don’t have full fat Fage (for my daughter) so I have to go across the street to get that. We do a TJs trip once every two weeks but it’s in an annoying part of town and the parking lot is a shit show. I hate going to TJs but I love everything we get at TJs. It’s hard to reconcile the two.

13 Her Royal Fabulousness { 02.25.12 at 5:39 pm }

Trisha posted a beautiful piece about the dreams she has of her future child


14 Brave IVF Girl { 02.26.12 at 5:07 pm }

I second K’s nomination of her post – in fact I wanted to post it last week but it didn’t fall in the right date range.


15 Elizabeth { 02.27.12 at 7:11 am }

Aaaah! You linked to meeeeeeeee! *vote*vote*vote* Can I stuff the ballot box too? 😉

16 KH99 { 02.27.12 at 2:28 pm }

I am so honored to be included in the round up. Thank you!

Katie at “from IF to when” wrote a post on the expiration of the adoption tax credit that unexpectedly generated some heat in the comments and then she wrote a post in response that also became a bit heated in the comments:

17 dspence { 02.28.12 at 1:16 pm }


Both the post and the comments remind us to be grateful for each day we have.

18 Keiko { 02.28.12 at 10:08 pm }

You totally have my vote 🙂

19 Keiko { 02.28.12 at 10:08 pm }

Oh no! My image didn’t post. Lame. Well, click for the funnies:


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