Be cautious when ordering shoes online

chrissycsmith August 31, 2014 Comments Off on Be cautious when ordering shoes online
Be cautious when ordering shoes online

School has been back in session for, I don’t know, a while now. We’ve fallen into our routine, except for the 4-year-old, who doesn’t start preschool for another bazillion weeks. Actually he starts next week, but it’s practically the same thing.
So i noticed before school this morning my first grader was kind of limping around in her shoes, which had seen better days.
“Those Hello Kitty shoes look terrible,” I examined the flaking glitter at the heel. “Why don’t you just wear your tennis shoes we bought before school let out?”
“They’re too small!” she wailed. Wailing is important on rushed school mornings. Wailing, and wallowing around on the sofa, NOT getting dressed or brushing teeth or eating breakfast or doing any of the things I asked you to do, let’s move move MOVE!!!
“Well, why didn’t you tell me they were too small?” I gently yanked a hairbrush through her hair. (If it is possible to yank gently.)
“OW!” she wrenched away from the hairbrush. “I did! I told Daddy!”
Ahhh, yes. Well, that explains why she does not have new shoes. My husband, while gifted and useful in many areas, is unlikely to hear things like, “My shoes are too small,” or “The baby needs changing.” Which is why, for the past couple weeks my daughter has been wearing worn-out Hello Kitty shoes with shot velcro and the glitter flaking off the heel. There are worse things in life, but had I known about this, I would have gotten the child new shoes for school. I mean, that’s what you do. Back to school = new shoes.
So I hopped online and placed a quick order, congratulating myself on my genius because I would avoid the shoe store with all four children.
Well. It was not genius. Pour yourself some coffee, folks, because i’m about to tell you why.
In addition to ordering shoes for my 6-year-old daughter, I also ordered a pair of Adidas “HyperFast” tennis shoes for my 4-year-old, and he could hardly contain his excitement waiting for them to arrive.
“HyperFast! They’re going to be HyperFast!” he kept telling me.
Finally, the big day came.
“THE BOX MAN IS HERE!!!!!” (This is what my 4-year-old calls the UPS guy.)
The shoes had arrived, in all of their glory, and immediately the kids pounced, thrilled and hopping around and grabbing sharp objects to stab at the box. They were opening it and pulling things out and ripping tags off the shoes and paper was flying everywhere, and “OH MY GOSH STOP STOP STOP YOU ALL HAVE TO STOP NOW!!!”
They paused briefly to look at me.
“Before you can do ANYTHING, we have to make sure they fit. If they don’t, we have to send them back.”
The 4-year-old told me his fit great, and he was ready to go run laps in the back yard RIGHT NOW because he was like The Flash in his new HyperFast shoes.
“Can I go? Can I go?” he was hopping from one foot to another, barely containing himself. “I wanna run!”
I had the baby climbing my lap and attempting to shred the packing slip, all while I was trying to check the 6-year-old’s feet for proper fit.
“Uh, do they fit you?” I asked him, distracted. (Mistake No.1. Do not ask a 4-year-old if his shoes fit because he has NO IDEA.)
“Yes!”
“Are you sure? Do they slip up and down in the back when you walk?”
“Yes!”
I narrowed at my eyes and took a closer inspection. He stepped back.
“I mean, no! They fit great. I’m going to go run.”
“Fine, fine,” I told him, attempting to wedge the 17-month-old’s fat baby feet into his new shoes. Putting fat baby feet into shoes is maddening.
And there you have Mistake No. 2, allowing the child to run outside in a pair of shoes I had yet to inspect for proper fit. (Not that I know how to fit shoes. Because I don’t.)
One minute later, my daughter hollered in the back door, “Moooom! Mark’s shoes don’t fit! One just fell off while he was running!”
“GAAAAAHHHHHH GET INSIDE NOW!!!!!!” I was using the Mean Mom voice.
I wrestled the shoes off his feet and examined them carefully. No visible dirt. A few dirty spots on the bottom, but a toothbrush took care of that.
“We’re sending these back,” I told him. “They don’t fit.”
“They doooooo!” he wailed. “I want to be fast! Like The Flash!”
“You’ll never be fast like The Flash if your shoes are falling off your feet. The Flash’s shoes fit.”
This is about when my husband got home, and I packed up the 6-year-old and 4-year-old, leaving the 8-year-old and baby behind, and I took them both shopping for tennis shoes. At a shoe store. With real, live people who could help me and measure my kids’ feet and tell me, “Yes, these are good.” My kids ran wild like banshees through the aisles of the store, but that’s just how it is at the shoes store. At least, it is with my kids.
So here are my Words of Wisdom for you today, good people. When purchasing children’s shoes, order online with caution. Because if you’re anything like me, you will totally mess it up, and then your preschooler will be tearing through the muddy backyard in a pair of $50 tennis shoes, dashing all hopes that you might return them. This is why local shoe stores exist, filled with very nice employees (and no mud!) who can measure your children and suggest shoe styles and maybe even help put the shoes onto your kids’ feet. It’s practically like the spa, if by the spa I mean a place where children act like maniacs for reasons I do not understand. (I would not like to go to that spa.)
I know we’re always talking about shopping local, but when it comes to shoes, I’m serious. Do yourself the favor. Shop local with your crazy banshee kids. Learn from my mistakes, and you won’t find yourself scrubbing the soles of a pair of Adidas over your kitchen sink.

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