Kickin’ It Old School
So in a previous post about baby crap, I mentioned that my little dude looks far more intelligent chewing on his Sophie Giraffe than on his shoes. And there you have it. I got him shoes. Shoes. For a kid who can’t walk. What the hell is wrong with her? you ask. Let me explain. The shoes serve a function: They keep the socks on. The shoes also serve to alleviate my guilt on cool mornings when my son is (gasp) barefoot. So yes, he can’t walk and he has shoes. Call me a fool.
Now here’s the problem with my buying baby shoes: I’m a sucker. Once upon a time, my first job ever was fitting shoes for a Stride Rite store. I was a teenager and needed some cash for college. Now that I think of it, in 1990, minimum wage was so not worth all the kicking and screaming (from the children). I think it was like $4.50/hour. Highway robbery.
Anyway, I’m a sucker for a good baby shoe. And I’m willing to pay for it. My justification is that at least I don’t go all crazy and buy multiple pairs (yet). I bought one good pair of pre-walkers that’ll go with all of his outfits. That seems responsible, right? And did I mention how freakin’ adorable they are?
Okay, so in my quest for the right baby shoe, I searched high and low (a few stores, really…I lack patience in a big way) for those old school, white shoes. I don’t mean the walkers; I mean pre-walkers. There’s a difference, and if you care, I’d be happy to launch into my sales pitch. Well, can I just tell you…they don’t make ’em like they used to. Apparently, moms these days aren’t into the orthopedic shoe look. Why the hell not? They’re baby shoes for chrissakes. Baby shoes. Let them be babies.
Coming up short on my white bootie pre-walkers, I did, however, discover a shoe store I fell in love with. (Alright, I know I’m not supposed to end a sentence with a preposition, but it’s my blog and damn you, Warriner’s English Grammar.) Get this: The store is independently owned. Seriously? Independently owned shoe stores still exist? Well, folks, I fell in love, because, yes, you guessed it; I worked at an independently owned shoe store. (Yeah, I know I said it was a Stride Rite, but yadda, yadda, yadda, it was independently owned. Not interesting.) So the owner is the one who helps me, and I love that he’s worked there forever and knows his schtuff when it comes to baby shoes. We talk shop. We reminisce about the good old days of saddle shoes and bells for laces (stupid recalls). Did I mention I’m in love with this place? It’s called Happy Feet Kids and it’s in Westborough, MA. They have a pretty crappy website, but I found an article about the place in Community Advocate, a local paper. It’s complete with a picture of Harvey Shanbaum (how can you not love his name), the owner and dude who helped me. Harvey helped me pick out a pair of Pediped pre-walkers for Bugsy, and I can’t tell you how many compliments they’ve received. Here’s a picture of his flippers modeling the shoes:
Just in case you can’t see these too well (hey, he’s a kid, not a foot model), here’s a link to see them better.
So now I don’t feel like crappy mom with the sorry barefoot kid. It’s always going to be about the guilt, isn’t it?
Although he is starting to figure out the velcro action, Sir Kicks-A-Lot hasn’t managed to remove these suckers yet. Oh, and to my dear husband, you may not want to click on the link to the shoes. But if you do, just know that your little boy’s digits are so worth it.