Reproduced below is an e-mail from me to Spouse, dated 12/19. I'm sure that those of you with children may find the general subject matter familiar. As to the specific subject matter, a "Hoodie Buddie" is a hooded sweatshirt with a jack for your MP3 player in the pocket, and the drawstrings to the hood have earbuds on the tips. Yes, it is washable. Big Kid requested a sweatshirt that would accommodate his iPod (I think he was talking about one with a cutout for your earphones to come up through the neck), but this is that theoretical sweatshirt gone "amps on eleven." I immediately liked the concept of the built-in earphones, because THAT'S ONE LESS THING FOR THE TWEEN TO LOSE. If something can be separated from something else, it will be lost. Period, paragraph.
Here's the e-mail.
RE: BULLETIN FROM THE NORTH POLE
The Hoodie Buddie people apologized to Santa: sweatshirt ordered by his elves (in the tween-approved, eye-assaulting black and turquoise graphic print) is no longer available, and the system was not even supposed to let the elves place their order, but somehow the order went through, and the Hoodie Buddie people did not notice this until the elves e-mailed it to their attention. Santa has now received a refund confirmation in his inbox.
The elves in Santa's information technology department located the same item (different print, but still tween-acceptable - eye-assaulting dark gray and green digitized plaid) at JC Penney. Evidently, Penney's has restocked since the elves' last recon trip. Not sure if restocking is online only or if units are available in the store as well. The IT elves have our Upromise account information on file, and one of the links through Upromise indicated "standard shipping by 12/20 for holiday delivery," so the elves bought a sweatshirt and requested that it be delivered right down the chimney at our current residence. In an abundance of caution, they also ordered one "ship to store." We'll see which one arrives first. The elves have promised that they will return the extra one.
The elves will not be denied. They still remember the Christmas of 2003, when C requested a Power Rangers toy that was a Wal-Mart exclusive - and that, evidently, sold out in early October. As you may recall, due to patent issues the elves were not able to duplicate said toy in the workshop, so they had to pay a man on eBay an obscene amount of money to ship THE ONLY POWER RANGER MEGAZORD WHATZIT IN NORTH AMERICA to our home - except it didn't arrive on time, so the elves were forced to spring for an I Can Play electric guitar. For a four year-old.
That four year-old is twelve now. And he WILL be getting a Hoodie Buddie, if the elves have to die trying.
Love you - K