Monday, September 24, 2012

Stepping Out


We noticed when Jack was a baby that he seemed like an "old soul" because he seemed to grasp things well beyond what someone his age should.

Me? I'm just plain old, and I have been for quite some time.

In doubt? Any day after 4:30 pm you can catch me walking around the house in flannel pjs topped by a down vest. If you're lucky, I'll be working the Washington Post crossword puzzle.

Then there's the fact that I acted like a mom long before actually becoming one. I fretted over people. I hugged. I worried whether my friends would grow up and meet someone nice. I dished out healthy doses of guilt to my high school students. And, thanks to beloved college friends, got valuable practice cleaning up other people's vomit.

Today I went on a shoe shopping spree to replace the fall shoes and boots I've been wearing since Margaret was in preschool. No need to rush into anything.

Putting the boxes in the car, I looked over the labels:

Aerosoles.
Naturalizer
and... dear God...
Life Stride.

Comfy, old people's shoes. I'd like to say that my comfy shoe wearing ways have come about since I turned 40, but I cannot lie to you. Considering how grumpy I get when I have to pee, need a snack, or am tired, I learned long ago that I don't need to add uncomfortable shoes to that equation. Yes, I am aware this sounds more like a toddler than a mature woman. Let's just say that when my kids complained of scratchy tags, I got it.

I'm just so happy to have found 4 new pairs of shoes that work and can carry me into the next years (decade?) in comfort.

I also gained a new slogan, inspired by today's shopping mates:

Anna Donaldson, Lowering the Median Age in the Aerosoles Store since 1993.

58 comments:

Anonymous said...

You are adorable, sensible shoes and all. I am grouching teetering around in heeled boots today, and should just give in already and do what you've admitted to.

love,
jbhat

Skye Harmony said...

Yay! I'm so glad I'm not the only one. I've never understood why women wear uncomfortable shoes. No amount of cute could make that worth it for me. I used to own a few pairs of heels (that I wore maybe twice a year), but I hated wearing them so I gave them all away. My feet are so much happier in practical footwear. (By the way, I'm 25!)

Karen L. said...

Tru dat, as my far younger daughter-who-teeters-around-in-spike-heels would say! I so agree in being comfy especially when you're teaching school. (I used to do that so I KNOW how feet feel after a day of teaching.) My friend and I bought several pairs of identical Naturalizers years ago in which to teach elementary school, in several different colors, so we didn't have to go back for several years! Still good memories of that shopping trip with her. You know, there's something "cool" about being "old", Anna! Ha....Karen L.

Mexmom said...

I totally agree, I only wear comfortable shoes, even when I look for high heels or boots I always look for comfort, which is why it takes me so long to find a pair that I like.

CaseyinTO said...

Im 26. I have heels from naturalizer. No shame!! hahaha

Sybil said...

Love the slogan...and the shoes!!

Kelly said...

Don't feel bad - I'm 26 and just bought a pair of Aerosoles boots from Kohls! I love them!

theresa o said...

I think all us gals are with you in the comfie shoe dept. And no matter what shoes you wear, you are beautiful inside and out!!!

Cris said...

Ha! I hear ya' sister! Have a closet full of cool, will-never-wear-again-sassy shoes, that I will ceremoniously donate.....someday.
Love my cozy, comfy can walk-for-hours-in shoes.

Susie said...

Love the new slogan.:) I have felt old since I couldn't wear high heels any longer. But now I am old. But I just keep pluuging along. Smiles to you and yours, Susie

Anonymous said...

I raise my Diet Coke to your next decade in these shoes. :)

Patricia said...

HA ! A woman after my own heart - I tell people, If I can't go (out, somewhere, to a restaurant, where ever ) in my "Merrill's " - then I don't go !

Elisa @ What the Vita said...

I laughed out loud at this sentence: "Let's just say that when my kids complained of scratchy tags, I got it." You are hilarious!

Debby@Just Breathe said...

Sounds like a great adventure. Nothing better than the comfort of shoes!

Anonymous said...

I'm a New Balance girl myself....but I haven't ever tried any of the ones you listed. I may have to chaeck them out - comfy is my thing, too.

Lisa G. in CT

Pam Priester said...

Another thing to love about you, Anna! Love you and your comfy shoes. I'll throw in that BORN shoes are ultra-comfy too if you've never tried them -- and TJMaxx and Marhalls often have cute BORN styles on their shelves!!

ashley said...

Right there with you, sister. (as I sit here in my yoga pants and college t-shirt (and college was 15 yrs ago...))

Anonymous said...

I am right there with you on the comfy shoes, Hush Puppies anyone? Shoes have to be comfy from the second I put them on. And I just bought four pair last week.

Michelle said...

Pictures please! I had no luck shoe shopping today and could use big inspiration.

Sue Hamblen said...

Kindred soles. No future limping is worth today's fashion. Give me comfort, (now that I'm way on the north side of 50) over style any day!

The Mommy Therapy said...

There is no shame in comfy feet! And that slogan rocks!

Fiona, LilyfieldLife said...

You are hilarious,, I get the scratchy tags also when my boy complains. And about his food touching on the plate! ( I can now eat food mixed together but as a kid I was a pain!)
Enjoy your comfy shoes!
Fiona

Christy said...

Anna! You left us hanging! Show us your new shoes please!
xoxo

Sharon said...

I'm so glad that I'm not the only one who wears comfortable shoes! Of course, when you've got bunions like mine.... My kids know that when I'm grouchy, I haven't either: been for my walk, gotten enough sleep or had my coffee. I also wear my big, yellow, fluffy robe from Costco year round (sexy I know). I'm "old" and I know it!

Julia said...

I would say you're ahead of your age. That makes you a winner, a leader, a pioneer of sorts.

I didn't need really good shoes that were comfortable and flat until I turned 50 and this dang bunion decided to join me for the ride.

xoxo, Julia

Anonymous said...

oh Anna, you have officially made my list of 'people I wished lived next door to me'. We could be besties. Although, in the winter when it gets dark at 4:30, I'd be running over to your house for a quick cup of coffee (decaf of course, don't want to be up all night!) in my flannel night gown that I've named Glad and Plaid. I'd hold it up as I tipped toed over so the hem wouldn't drag. I'm only sorry that I don't see a Haflinger boiled wool slippers box in that back seat---the only thing that keeps us from being sisters from another mother.

Steph said...

Well the shoes are definitely "old lady" (not that there is anything wrong with that:) but you look youthful and gorgeous. Enjoy being comfortable!

One crazed mommy said...

LOL - I have worn aerosoles since high school....love them! So comfortable. I read a post on FB the other day from a friend and she stated how she was getting funny looks because she didn't dress as a slob on weekends, and was wearing her 5 inch red heels...I about choked. For one, I don't own any heels over 2 inches tall. Two, I would fall flat on my face and/or break an ankle if I ever attempted to. And Third, I love my slobby, comfy clothes on weekends - if you can't be comfy, why bother. :) My husband has tried to get me to buy 5 inch heels...I laugh at him - he can dream. Haha!

Jill said...

Between the flannel pjs, crossword puzzle, and shoes I feel I have found a kindred soul! You seem quite normal to me (and I'm ONLY 39!).

Anonymous said...

What cute little size 7 1/2 feet you have my dear... Enjoy your new shoes!

Esther said...

Have you heard of the book "The Highly Sensitive Person"? You will love it. You just mentioned several of the characteristics of a HSP, such as; itchy tags, empathy for others, and multiple personalities when you're hungry. ;)

elaments said...

I bought my first pair of Aerosoles over the weekend. :)

darsden said...

:-)

OSMA said...

Not much is more fun than a shoe shopping spree, yay! I have a mom uniform too. One I'm sure my husband would love to see at the bottom of a burn barrel. Along with my super frumpy but oh so comfy Keenes :). Good work on comfort and style!

mgh said...

LOVE this! I told me husband that the BEST part of being in my 40's was that I feel TOTALLY justified in giving up any attempts to be sexy. He gave me a quizzical look... probably surprised that I had ever even considered that at all when choosing my attire. I was never destined to be a cougar. :)

Last summer my mission was to find elastic waisted pants that didnt look too too grandma. I finally found some at Old Navy. And just in the nick of time, too. My right arm as been deteriorating since January. Now on my THIRD round of physical therapy. And it really doesnt look like I'll be able to pull on jeans any time soon. I might soon be wearing my flannel pjs with the vest out to the grocery. I've been tying to figure out what I'm going to wear when I decide that a bra is just not worth all the pain that shoots down my arm.
I like you fashion tips. I need comfort in my life. Keep 'em coming :)

AnneB said...

You may not think that the younger crowd is wearing Aerosoles because we aren't in the Aerosoles, but you'd be wrong because we're buying them at DSW, Off Broadway Shoe and Kohls!

Anonymous said...

Laughed out loud at this one! Long live Lifestride!

Laura said...

My oldest, now in college, arrived the same year as my first pair of Aerosoles. The calendar may say I'm 43, but my feet are still a happy, happy 23 years old.
I have to say, though, I'm a bit envious of your cute size 7 1/2 feet. My 'two sizes larger' have a way of drawing attention to my un-hipness. ;-)

Flannels and crosswords too?!? I can't help but like you more and more each day.

Jessica Watson said...

It's so funny because I became a mom for the first time at a very young age so I spent a long time thinking I didn't "look" like a mom. I caught a glimpse of myself in my minivan window the other day and oh I officially look the part.

Anonymous said...

Brilliant slogan Anna :)

Lots of love
K x

Princess Kate said...

Shoes have never really been my thing. I'll take comfort over high/fashionable any time. I'm praying extra hard tonight for you. Always thing of you.

Princess Kate said...

Oops that's thinking of you ;)

MaryBeth said...

Love this post! Alas, as someone who used to run in heels my knees are now shot and my ankles are not far behind.
I love my Keens! You should try them, they are an outdoor healthy living type brand, and the mothers of my Kindergarten class think they are cute. Of course these moms are younger that my own children...

Ring Torrence Stafford said...

sisters in comfort! my closet is full of Merrills, Clarks, Sofft and Easy Spirit and Aerosoles. I am now in a desperate search for low heeled COMFORTABLE dress shoes for my son's wedding in November. Many tried and rejected - I will NOT wear anything that hurts. There is a fortune to be made if someone would focus on shoes with comfort AND style. We are legion.

The Empress said...

Well, some of us are more tender footed than others.

(goes along with their type of heart)

xo

Hillary said...

I started wandering into Naturalizer when I was 30, and I've been haunting there ever since, especially when I get a coupon! Comfortable shoes are the new stiletto for the mature woman.

Lady Jennie said...

I love you. :-)

Bernadette Geyer said...

I love my Life Stride shoes! And Aerosoles has so many cute styles now! No shame in comfort.

Katie said...

I feel the stress of wearing cute shoes almost daily, living in New York. But my job requires me to wear comfortable, practical shoes (translation: ugly, old people's shoes). So I often resort to Naturalizer and Clarks..but my feet thank me for it! I still wear my Friday-night-out-in-the-city heels, but I can only do it once every few weeks because the blisters take that long to heal. Sigh.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

You crack me up. Remember when I made you try on my longer boot jeans at BlogHer '10. Then you decided that you preferred your flats for all of that walking around... I have definitely started to prioritize comfortable footwear in ways I never could have imagined. Think I wore the same pair of flip flops every day this summer. No strappy sandals for this suburban mom!

Kate Coveny Hood said...

You crack me up. Remember when I made you try on my longer boot jeans at BlogHer '10. Then you decided that you preferred your flats for all of that walking around... I have definitely started to prioritize comfortable footwear in ways I never could have imagined. Think I wore the same pair of flip flops every day this summer. No strappy sandals for this suburban mom!

Erin said...

I adore this entry. You should see my shoe collection. All flats, aside from one or two two inch thick heels for fear I might turn my ankles. And several pairs of the same orthopedic new balance sneakers with orthotic inserts. And when I lamented to the New Balance salesman that I wished they made my sneakers in different colors he said, well the main customers of that type of shoe are senior citizens and they gravitate towards the plain looking shoe.Yup, I'm 34.

tracy@sellabitmum said...

Ha! I love you for this. Just plese don't tell me if you start buying Danskos. Oh please don't. ;)

Caryl said...

Um, I love my comfy shoes. I have many pairs of Clarks Bostonian thick soled goodness in my closet. Out with the heels that kill my feet and in with the comfy shoes. Been doing this for 5 years. I am now 42 and you can't change my mind... good comfy shoes vs fashion.... sorry fashion, you are gonna lose...

for a different kind of girl said...

Oh, honey...at least you stopped yourself before getting a pair of SAS shoes! :)

Much love from me and my slip-resistant, size 10W lunch lady black sneakers'

Heidi said...

Ha!! For me it's all about slipping into comfy pants (okay, pajama pants) as soon as possible. Sometimes that's at 7 and sometimes it's as early as 4. It's getting worse as I get older.

Susan said...

Hey now! :-) I ROCK the Aerosole shoes in my Manhattan office. Sure, it's really, really difficult to find those two pairs of super cute pumps they carry. But I find them. And I wear them to the studs walking around NYC.

So you're styling.

PeachPrenni said...

LOL! Loved this post. This is why I love you Anna--you're so real. Hope that never changes!!
xo
Annie