Now my Christmas shopping is complete: sharing the Christmas spirit with those in need.

With the exception of last year, I always have picked up a gift tag from the mall with a child’s name on it and bought presents for the child.

This year I selected a four-year-old girl who requested clothes, a doll, and an educational toy. The organization which sponsors this toy/clothing drive suggests spending about $50. But I usually go way over that.

I had over $50 in points at Old Navy so I was able to buy her two complete outfits. I know some little girls aren’t into girly girl dresses anymore. So I tried to pick something practical yet a little bit girlish.

I then headed over to Walmart. As it so happened a woman there was shopping in the doll section for dolls for her 4-year-old granddaughter. I asked her for her advice and she suggested some cute little Disney princess dolls that were $7 a piece. So I got three (because one is never enough) and also threw in a tiara. Because every girls needs a tiara.

As for educational toys I found a LeapFrog one appropriate for a 4-year-old. Both my boys had loved LeapFrog and my youngest one actually learned his ABCs at age 2 with his older brother’s LeapFrog toy. But that was before kids had iPads. However, I’m guessing that kids in this program might not have much access to electronics.

The grand total was $50 at Walmart and $8 at Old Navy. So I was just tad over. But to me the dollar amount isn’t important. I just wish I could see her happy face on Christmas Day.

I’m officially “boosted” (Moderna #3)

A few weeks back I was distressed to hear that my state of Colorado was about at #4 in terms of Covid hospitalization rates in the US. I was quite surprised as roughly 73% of the population (12 and older) is vaccinated. But right now many hospitals are at or near capacity and have to turn away patients. On the same newscast I also heard that our state’s chief medical officer told vaccine providers that they could give boosters to anyone, no matter what the federal guidelines were (although it appears those guidelines may change soon).

I quickly checked around and found that that I was able to get an appointment at Walmart. Yes, I had to fib a little bit on the online appointment scheduler stating that I did indeed meet the qualification criteria, but this has always been a problem with the pharmacies. During the initial rollout people qualified but the pharmacies always lagged in updating their systems. Anyhow, when I was at Walmart, several people came in for walk in appointments. So I don’t feel bad.

Although I preferred the ease and comfort of the drive-thru clinic I had gone to for my first two vaccines, I found that Walmart was quite efficient and better set up than Walgreens or Safeway.

As a side note, I felt like I was in another country. In Boulder County we have a mask mandate but the Walmart I went to is in Adams County with no mask mandate. I wore my mask during the whole process but none of the pharmacy staff did. Oh well, I’m a proud Boulderite and we do stand out from the rest of the state.

I was prepared to battle the side effects. Sore arm? Yes, but not as bad as my flu shot. Tiredness? Yes, I fell asleep watching the Costa Rica – Honduras soccer match. (Costa Rica won!) The next day was horrible. Fever and chills and a headache. The good news was that by bedtime I was fine.

I feel good about getting my booster and doing my part, which also means continuing to wear a mask. I have a big trip planned for February to Costa Rica and I’m not letting Covid get in my way. In the meantime, I wish the holdouts, like my hair stylist, would get their vaccines.