My Hatchimal Toy Story
I know you’re magical and all, I know you fly all the way from the North Pole on magical reindeer and your elves work tirelessly all year long to make the perfect handcrafted toys to deliver to boys and girls on Christmas eve. I know you use magic to shove yourself down the tightest of chimneys to drop off toys and then you’re back on your SLEIGH, aka “Uber” being whisked back up to the North Pole.
Well, this year Santa, I can’t give you all of the credit. What I did this Christmas, I want ALL OF THE CREDIT FOR. I WANT ALL OF THE ACCOLADES. I want you to know I used NO magic to achieve what I did. As a matter of fact, I am now questioning what your “Santa” job description entails.
When my 8-year-old asked for a Hatchimal toy back in October, I had no clue what she was talking about, nor did I care. In November, when she asked again for her birthday, I decided to look it up online and I couldn’t find one anywhere. I still really didn’t think much of it.
Now the Christmas season rolls around and everywhere I turn, I’m hearing about these Hatchimals . I am hearing stories of parents paying astronomical prices for these egg-hatching creatures. Every kid wants one, every parent is losing their mind trying to find one. I started to kick myself for not getting her one months ago…
I BECAME HELL-BENT ON FINDING A HATCHIMAL.
I started to search online and found they were selling for $250.00 or more… I just couldn’t justify spending that amount of money on a toy. I started to call the toy stores. I was like a detective looking for clues to solve a mystery. I tried to be super nice and cool with the workers over the phone. I wanted them to think I was a cool mom, that I could be trusted and they could tell me when the next shipment of Hatchimals was coming in and maybe they would even put one aside for me and I wouldn’t tell a soul.
They wouldn’t crack.
But they did give me some key clues that would help me out later in my quest. They told me a shipment was coming in, but they didn’t know when. They also told me that when the news announced the previous shipment, people started lining up as soon as the store closed to get a Hatichimal when the store opened the following morning. At some point, they were given a ticket and once the store opened, whoever had tickets got Hatchimals. There were about 100 people lined up and only 24 were able to get Hatchimals.
Those folks that stood outside, overnight, were one french fry short of a happy meal. There was NO WAY I WOULD EVER DO SOMETHING LIKE THAT FOR A DAMN TOY!
I continued to search for a decent priced Hatchimal and had no luck. I was obsessed with finding one. I posted a blog that talked about Hatchimals and someone commented and said Target was getting a shipment in… THE NEXT DAY!
My wheels started turning. I HAD TO GET ONE! But how?
The next day, all I could think about was getting that darn toy. In the back of my head, the conversation with the toy store salesmen kept replaying in my head.
“People lined up as soon as the store closed to get a Hatchimal,” replayed over and over. I started to joke with my husband, telling him we needed to spend the night in the Target parking lot tonight to get a Hatchimal. He just looked at me crazy and laughed, then I would laugh and we’d both laugh. I kept bringing it up over and over until it was no longer funny and I was dead serious.
I was going to sleep in my car tonight in the Target parking lot.
Later that evening, my husband and I went to dinner and then started to head home. Sleeping in my car was still in the back of my head, but my husband wasn’t biting at the idea and I was tired. Something kept tugging at me. So I said, “Let’s just stop by Target really quick and see if it’s really all that serious and people were really going to sleep in the parking lot.”
My husband was just going with the flow and we drove to Target. As soon as we pull up around 9:45pm, there is a family of four sitting in chairs outside the store. They were the first in line, waiting for a chance to buy a Hatchimal. Target wasn’t even closed yet…
THAT WAS IT! MARCUS AND I WILL SLEEP IN THE PARKING LOT TONIGHT. WE WILL GET A HATCHIMAL!
I don’t know if I’ve told you, but I am VERY IMPULSIVE. Sometimes that’s a good thing and other times, not so much. I don’t know at this point if this was even about my kid anymore. It was about me WINNING! It was me doing something borderline CRAZY, so I could possibly be the parent to get what everyone else wanted.
11:00pm: It was about 38degrees when we pitched the tent outside of Target. We quickly made friends with the family in line before us and we were all determined to make it through the night! I was pumped! I was ready! I still couldn’t believe I was doing it, but the adrenaline was flowing heavily!
11:05pm: The adrenaline wore off. I was FREEZING, laying inside a tent, on the hard cement. What in the hell have I done?! Once I was no longer moving, it became so cold that I had to put a piece of clothing over my entire face to keep warm. After about an hour of going between the shakes and disbelief for what my husband and I were doing, I fell asleep. It rained off and on. Every time the rain would start, underneath me would turn ice cold and I could feel the water running underneath, (don’t worry, our tent had a tarp at the bottom, so we weren’t actually getting wet).
1:45am: I checked my phone for the time and went back to sleep.
3:00am: A few other people lined up and were clearly on some kind of an upper because they were yelling, laughing and had no regard for me and my husband trying to sleep in the tent. It took everything in my being to not pop my head out of the tent and tell them to shut the YOU-know-what up!
4:00am: I started hearing the Target doors open and shut.
5:00am: I heard a male say, “Okay, we have 14 Hatchimals and you guys are going to get one.”
Wait. Was I dreaming?
Marcus jumps up, hops out of the tent and the man hands us two tickets and tells us we could get two per person.
NO WAY?! Not only did we get one, but we were able to get four! I could give all of my kids that were old enough to play with one a HATCHIMAL!
WE DID IT!
We weren’t out of the woods yet. It was only 5:00am and Target didn’t open until 7:00am. BUT, we already had tickets, so we were guaranteed a toy. Marcus packed up our tent, we went to the car, turned the heat on full-blast and went back to sleep.
6:45am: Marcus wakes me up and tells me there is a line, so we should probably get in it. At this point, I was so tired that I was delusional and my body was stiff from sleeping on cement. But it was GO TIME!
7:00am: The Target doors open and about 25 of us file inside. At this point, Marcus and I were well aware that over half of the people weren’t getting a Hatchimal, because the first four families that had been there for hours had all tickets and were taking them all.
I watched as the first three families took ten out of the 14 Hatchimals. People in line were literally counting the toys as the families walked out the door. Some started to panic and some started to look angry.
I felt bad.
My husband says he didn’t feel bad at all. We slept outside for these. We earned them.
You know what? HELL YEAH WE DID!
We were behind about ten people in line and the worker says,
“If you don’t have a ticket, you’re not getting one. We’re sold out.”
He looks at Marcus and I and he signals us to register.
The people watched in horror as we purchased the LAST FOUR HATCHIMALS! As the clerk brings them out from the back, my husband looks at the toy, looks at me, then says,
“This is what we waited in line to buy?”
I said, “No, this is what we slept outside in a tent to buy.”
I CANNOT BELIEVE WE PULLED THIS OFF! We weren’t sure, even with sleeping outside, that we would be guaranteed a toy. But we knew we had to try and this was a once in a lifetime opportunity. We had nothing to lose. We only thought we would get one and we left with four, for $59.00 each! I would call that being worth the wait.
So Mr. Clause, this is why I can’t give you the credit for my kids opening up these prized possessions on Christmas morning. I want to the gift tag to say, “From: Mommy and Daddy.” I want them to know it’s from us, I want to see their jaws drop as they open up four Hatchimals. I want to feel warm inside, knowing I slept on pavement for them. I want the credit, the thanks and the hugs. My husband and I PUT IN WORK for this toy, unlike someone I know that has all the work done for him. He gets all the credit when all he does is use magic to get skinny, drops down chimneys and throws down some toys under a tree.
I’m sorry Santa, but this Christmas, it’s MY TIME TO SHINE!
Someday, I will tell them what I went through to get them a Hatchimal. I bet their response will be… “Which toy was that?”
Oh well, it was totally worth it. An experience that will go down in history!
The parent that ROCKS.