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Valentine Cards, Kmart and My Underwear

February 11, 2014

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The first year in our new home was a wild time and while I would never want to relive it, it did provide us with some very funny stories.

Of course, ninety-nine percent of the time, the laugh was at my expense.

How I Lost My Underwear At Kmart

We closed on the house in early September, Labor Day weekend actually, a few days before my oldest would hop on the bus to kindergarten and I would start teaching preschool, my first job, outside the home, since having kids.

It was a big adjustment and like I said, a wild year.

I had a toddler in tow and a house under MAJOR construction.

I was class mom, taught Sunday school, helped out with local theater productions, had two cats, a puppy, a husband that worked long hours and traveled A LOT.

It was a busy time, to say the least and I was trying to do it all.

Things were bound to fall through the cracks and they did.

The most memorable crack (if you'll pardon the pun), however, was the day I lost my underwear at Kmart.

My kids had been begging me to take them shopping for valentine cards for weeks.

The pretty cards showed up in the stores in January and while I was busy trying to reacquaint myself with the business of teaching and keep up with my wife/ mother jobs in a house that didn't have running water on most days, I didn't see valentine cards as a priority.

Dixie Belle Vinyl Transfers on printed sheet music

Eating was a priority.

Bathing was a priority.

Unpacking was a priority.

Valentines didn't really make the list, but eventually, those kids wore me down.

So, one chilly afternoon, after I dismissed my preschoolers, I grabbed my toddler from her own two and a half year old class and raced home to meet the kindergarten bus.

Trying to beat the clock again, I ran in the house and dropped my coat on the floor in my room while I listened to the machine for messages.  

Multitasking, as I fed the kids, picked up a few toys, glanced at my plan book for the next day and sped off again. 

After buckling and unbuckling and dodging the cars in the icy parking lot, we finally walked into Kmart and were immediately greeted by rows and rows of the coveted valentine cards.

The kids were in awe. Hearts and flowers everywhere.

Vintage Flower Banner DIY

They stood there for a brief moment, overwhelmed by the choices, before one of them looked down and yelled, "Ew, mommy....somebody's underwear is on the floor!

Of course everyone entering and exiting the store turned around to look and yes, there was indeed a pair of someone's old underwear on the floor, right there in front of the valentine display.

Gross, but then again, it was Kmart. I kind of shrugged and moved the kids away from it.

And then I froze.

I looked again and it slowly dawned on me that the underwear lying on the floor in Kmart, left there, I'd assumed, by some less than classy customer, belonged to ME!

Me!! I tried to understand it, but I couldn't make sense of it.

Unbelievably, it was my underwear, and not even my good underwear, on the floor and I was horrified.

Even more so, when one of my kids yelled, "Mommy, those look like your underpants!"

People looked at me and laughed as I gave them the "crazy kids" face, panicked, put my foot on top of the panties and flung them under the holiday rolling rack.

And left immediately.

Obviously without any valentines.

Valentine's Day Love Banner From Puzzle Pieces

 The kids were crying and I was mortified as we scurried through the lot, sure that someone I knew had seen me.

A parent from school, an old flame or worse, one of my husband's old girlfriends.

I was also certain that the whole incident had been caught on surveillance camera and that the night crew would find them and laugh hysterically at the crazy lady who lost her underwear.

I spent the next month checking YouTube for any incriminating video.

Sitting in the car, contemplating whether or not I should go back in to get my...belongings...I wracked my brain trying to understand what had just happened.

Wasn't I wearing my underwear?

Believe it or not, I actually checked.

It was utterly incomprehensible.

How did a pair of my most private attire end up on the floor of a large box store?

After much contemplation, I figured out that they must have gotten stuck to the back of my coat from static electricity when I dropped it on the floor at home.

You see laundry was not one of the priorities. 

The pile was big and my underwear must have been on the top, which means that I walked across that crowded parking lot with those white floral panties pasted to the back of my black coat.

Once inside the store, they must have just fallen off.

Unbelievable.

red hydrangea wreath


I called my husband for consolation.

In between bouts of uncontrollable laughter and questioning me on exactly which pair I'd lost (um, like that mattered ~ at all) he reassured me that it wasn't such a big deal, convinced me that no one saw anything, swore that he wouldn't tell anyone.

And then hung up and immediately shared the story with his entire staff.

I'm apparently very good for office morale.

Of course, years later it's actually a ridiculously funny story, I mean who loses their underwear at Kmart?

You know who?

This girl, that's who...and I mean, honestly, at this point are you really surprised?





  1. Laughed so much! I knew had to be static, fortunately I have not done that with my underwear.

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    1. It was so embarrassing! It makes a really good party story though! ;)

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  2. That's a great story, Kim. When I saw that your post had something to do with Kmart and underwear, I was definitely intrigued! Now I don't feel quite so bad about spilling an entire cup of coffee in the dentist's waiting room today while my son was getting his teeth cleaned!

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    1. Haha JoAnne! I would gladly trade you that coffee spill for my underwear mishap! ;)

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  3. Oh my gosh!! That sounds like something that would happen to me! I would have kicked those panties off and taken off running. :) That has happened to me with a sock but never with undies.

    You had me cackling and that's so good for the soul. Thank you girl. :)

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    1. I'm glad I made you laugh, Stacey! I was so embarrassed back then, but now it makes me laugh, too! :)

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  4. Oh my! You should have been at our dinner party last night with that story.

    I am amazed that your figured out how losing the underwear happened. And, isn't it typical that a husband shared the story with the office!

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    1. It is a very entertaining party story, Carol! Of course, it would be even better if it had happened to somebody else! ;)

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  5. Hi Kim, First time visiting your blog and I have to tell you I laughed out load when I read this. So funny! Embarrassing moments happen.. and you have to just go with it. I can match you story to story on this one:) leslie

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    1. I'd love to hear THAT story, Leslie! ;) I'm glad I could make you laugh! Thanks for leaving a comment, it's always fun to get people's reactions!

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  6. For Pete's sake woman . . . warn us first next time will ya? Some of us are on the (slightly, of course) older side of things. I almost wet my pants laughing! (Was going to say "peed" but do you spell it with two e's or three?) Sooooooo funny. My Hubs is still laughing. Yep, I had to share it, but at least it's not like the whole office that knows you or anything, so don't worry.
    P.S. Thanks for stopping by my site today.

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    1. Sorry Cheryl! I'm glad I made you laugh! At least all that embarrassment was good for something! :)

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  7. Great story, and I can only imagine the girls talking in their best "outdoor voices" questioning you as to why the underwear looked like yours....

    Tracy

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    1. Oh yes, Tracy, it was definitely one of "those" moments! I don't think I would've been half as mortified without their very audible commentary!! ;)

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  8. Love it!! You're a brave gal to share your story...even if it was years ago!! :)

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    1. Thanks Diane! I'm glad you enjoyed it, makes the risk of sharing it totally worth it! :) Happy Valentine's Day!

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  9. Kim,

    Talk about suspense!! Your honest and fluid narration made it very easy for me to identify with you, the main character, in this 'seat of your pants' thriller! A great read, thanks for sharing! LOL

    Poppy

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    1. Thanks Poppy! It's a very indelicate tale, but it was just too funny not to share! ;) Happy Valentine's Day friend!

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  10. This is the absolute best laugh I've had all week. Thank you so much for sharing :)

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    1. Thanks for coming by to read it and comment, Debbie! I'm glad that you enjoyed it!

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  11. Bwahahaha! I used to work at Kmart and if I had every spotted a pair of someone's panties under the display shelf I would've cracked up. And left them there...I mean, I wasn't paid nearly enough to pick up used underwear! Thanks for sharing at Fridays Unfolded!

    Alison
    Nancherrow

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    1. Oh Alison, I hear you loud and clear! I have worked as a retail manager in more stores than I care to recall and some of what we found in the dressing rooms, was horrifying! I would say that The Children's Place was the worst....you can only imagine, I am sure! :)

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    1. Thanks Carissa! It was super embarrassing then, but it makes for a funny story now! :) Thanks for popping by!

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  13. OMG Kim! This is absolutely hysterical! lol So sorry you went through that....tthis is exactly something that would happen to me! Truly! xoxo Jen

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    1. I was horrified Jen, truly horrified. I do not usually leave the house unless I feel very "put together". Having a large pair of panties plastered to my back, does not count as being "put together"!

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  14. LOL!!! OMG that was a great post, thanks so much for sharing! I was always paranoid about stuff like that after one time I had a dryer sheet stuck to me and didn't notice til at work lol

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    1. Oh Kari, that is embarrassing, but I wish it had been a dryer sheet! ;)

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  15. This is not only hilarious is everyones worst nightmare to have something like this happen to them. Leave it to kids to point it out too!! A friend of mine had something similar happen to her with her underwear. Except it was in the shared garden at her condo!

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    1. Your friend's experience sounds worse! At least I was in the presence of strangers. Sounds like your poor friend was going to have to see her neighbors over and over again! Yikes! :)

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  16. Oh, my gosh, girl, you are too funny! I just know someday this story is going to be in a book. You may be the next Erma Bombeck. Hysterical!

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    1. Nancy you are the second person this week to reference Erma Bombeck after reading my story. I could not be more flattered with that (completely undeserved) comparison! It is the ultimate compliment! It actually makes the sting of the embarrassment totally worth it! Thank you, thank you, thank you! :)

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  17. Lmao that's hilarious - of all the times it could've fallen off your coat!! I'm sure once you go through that experience nothing else phases you! Have a great one Kim! -Iva

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    1. Iva, I thought that once I'd had children that nothing else would phase me...the delivery, the nursing, etc. However, there is something about unintentionally bearing my undies that tops it all! Let's just say that I am very careful about where I drop my coat now! ;)

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  18. Ha Ha I just read this.....so funny - Sue

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    1. Glad you got a laugh, Sue! Thanks for coming by to leave a comment!

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  19. That is hilarious! That could so happen to anyone. Really! How many times have you found clothes stuck to other clothes?! But oh, how funny to have it happen in Kmart!

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    1. Exactly, Michelle...and could it not have fallen off in the car or in my driveway?? ;)

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  20. Love the story. I don't use dryer sheets often enough either. Would it be less embarrassing to drop this in an upscale place like the bedroom display of a furniture store? Either way, I can commiserate with you regarding the loud comments from your children.

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    1. Yes, children always seem to find the least appropriate times to loud! Of course, that usually makes them the funniest!

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  21. hahahahaha you had me laughing out loud. Seriously, this is something I could see happening to me - except I wouldn't have the luck of them falling off of my coat

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    1. It was so embarrassing, Jamie, but yes, at least I wasn't wearing them at the time! ;)

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  22. Oh how funny! I would have gasped and all shoppers would have known they were my underwear! LOL Love this story. xo

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    1. No gasping from me, Pepper, but I think my very red cheeks may have given me away! ;) Glad you got a chuckle! Happy Valentine's Day!

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  23. Great story! I know of a similar one - my best friend in high school had the same problem with static electricity. On her first date with the guy she would eventually marry, he held up her coat for her to put on and a pair of panties fell out! She was so embarrassed! What he must have thought! LOL! She had placed her coat on her bed where her panties were and the static glued them to the coat, at least temporarily! So watch out for static electricity! Blessings, Janet

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    1. That static will get you every time, Janet! ;) Trust me, I look now! Thanks for sharing your funny story and have a super day!

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  24. Great story Kim. I am still laughing and imagining that sight. Static cling can bring some funny stories. Thanks for resharing. Happy Valentine's Day!

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    1. Funny and embarrassing! Silly static cling! I hope you have a wonderful Valentine's Day with your honey!

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  25. Tooo funny! Happy Valentines Day!

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    1. Glad I could make you smile, Cindy! Happy Valentine's Day to you, too!

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  26. It was only K-Mart but still!!! Too funny! Believe it or not I have a lost underwear story and I am still mortified over it. We rented a half house last summer for vacation and they had a laundry room....yeah! I never put my underwear in the dryer so I hung a pair up on the broom holder. The day we left I checked to make sure we had everything. Never looked up in the laundry room and I left my underwear hanging there ( a favorite pair too!). I just know the guy we rented from was as embarrassed to find them as I was to forget them. I am still not over it :-)

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    1. Oh my gosh, AnnMarie!! Did you ever rent that house again? Did the guy mail you back your underwear? Your story is better than mine. Anonymity served me well that day!! Thanks for sharing!!!

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  27. This happened in the mid 70's: the head nurse of our hospital unit was a large lady. While she was making her morning rounds visiting every male patient in 1 of the wards (a huge room with 4 beds in it), she felt the elastic in her granny panties give way, & the panties slide to the floor on top of her feet. I asked her what she did then when she & told me later in the day. She stepped backwards out of them & then kicked them under the bed! She went commando the remainder of our shift. She never would've lived it down if any of the 4 patients in that ward had witnessed it. I was a newly graduated nurse & will never forget her telling me that story....but I loved yours too!

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    1. That story takes the cake! It sounds like it came right out of a movie or sitcom scene!! Thankfully, my pants were still on my body when I left that store. That is a scenario that I shudder to think about! Can you imagine walking around at work...and at a physical job no less...all day long without your pants?? Thanks for sharing! I hate to say it, because I've been there, but I laughed a lot!! :)

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  28. I have to tell you this happened to a co-worker year's ago. She was at an indoor auction. She got up to go to the ladies room and on the way back she noticed her expensive undies lying in the aisle. She swooped down and grabbed them shoving them in her pocket. Her husband couldn't believe she picked them up. She said but they were one of her favourites. We believe that static cling held them in her slacks. We were hysterical when she told the story at work.

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    1. I kept this story a secret a good long time, Carol-Ann, when I finally told my girlfriends they were hysterical, too...crying and to a point where they could not recover. I decided then and there to share one day. I figured some good should come of it. She was brave to pick hers up! :) Thanks for sharing!!

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  29. Oh man, that is hilarious Kim! You have a very funny way of writing...you make us all picture it. I needed that laugh today!

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  30. OMG I was hysterical reading this post! I can't imagine what the moment felt like. Kids are so helpful during these moments. But they are honest and say what's in their head.

    Such a great story!

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    1. I'm glad I could send a laugh your way today, Cindy! Yeah...kids really do say the funniest things and usually they are at very inappropriate moments. I guess that's what makes it so amusing. Happy Valentine's Day!!

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  31. LOL tooooo funny. Out of the mouths of babes too!!!! Made me laugh this morning thank you for the laugh. Happy Valentines day. xoxo Kris

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    1. Thanks Kris. The kids laugh about it every single year. I still can’t believe it happened. Happy Valentine’s Day!!

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  32. As embarrassing as that was and I feel your pain, but I do have one to top that...When I was in kindergarten, we lived at the end of a 1/2 mile gravel driveway which was between rows of corn fields. We were in the country!! Well, I took the bus to school every day and as soon as I sat down, the cold plastic seat informed me that I had forgotten to put on panties that day.!! I was ever so careful to sit with my legs together in class, but then...recess. That day the boys decided to play "skirts in the air" a favorite pastime when the boys would race around the recess yard lifting up unsuspecting girls'skirts! I couldn't stay standing, so I sat on the steps of the school front stoop with 2 of my friends on either side of me. They didn't know my dilemma, of course, but kept me company. When the incredibly long day finally ended, and I went home, my mom commiserated with me when she heard my story, but I never again forgot to wear my underwear! Panties were the first thing I put on after that!!

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    1. Gabi, you win!! Oh my gosh, I literally gasped when I read your sentence about the bus!! Now that is horrifying. I can actually feel the pit in your stomach just thinking about what kind of day that must've been for you...as both a former kindergartener, kindergarten teacher and a mom. I think I would've gone to the nurse and said I was sick so my mother would've come to pick me up. Of course, when I was younger that wasn't really a thing. You literally had to be dying for them to call home! Thanks for sharing your tale with us. Happy Valentine's Day!! 🥰

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  33. My husband's aunt was walking down the street and her underwear fell down and she walked out of them and kept walking like nothing happened. True story.

    You story is so funny I read it to my daughter and we laughed.

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    1. Oh no!! That's hysterical though...I'm not sure I'd have the guts to do that, but that's awesome. And I'm so glad you and your daughter laughed...that's exactly why I shared it. Happy Valentine's Day to you both!

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  34. LMAO!!!!! KIM!!!! You have me rolling on the ground here laughing!!!! Such a funny story but i am sure you were mortified at the time especially when your child says "Mommy, isn't that your underwear?" LOL!!! Okay, This may make you feel better....My Mother always told the story about her and her friend going to a dance. Now mind you my mother would be 103 this year. She said this group of girls came out of the bathroom and back then, more girls danced with each other. Everyone was pointing and laughing so the one girl looked behind the one she was dancing with and her skirt was caught up in the top of her underwear exposing her behind...Remember back then they wore underwear and a garter belt that held their stockings in place!! So they danced right back into the bathroom, returning only a few minutes to the dance floor with her skirt now pulled down and looking the right and proper way!!!! I would have crawled out the window in the bathroom and went home if that happened to me!!!! LOL!! I hope my little story made you laugh like yours made me laugh this afternoon....And I am sure that when I think of it from time to time, I will chuckle!!!
    Thanks for sharing, my friend!!
    Hugs,
    Deb

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    1. Deb, I just read you story to my kids and we laughed so hard. My grandparents were born in the late 1800's to 1900, so I'm very familiar with just how scandalous that sight would've been. I have to tell you that I would've crawled out the window, too. More power to those ladies...quick thinking and brave!! Thanks for the reciprocal laugh. What a great Valentine!! Hugs!!

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  35. Kim, so funny. No wonder K-mart has gone out of business. Can you imagine how many terrible incidents have happened there over the years. It was a really gross store and your story is just one of them! I really cried laughing but I know that it wasn't that funny for you. Since you figured out that you had been walking around with them stuck to your back was probably more embarrasing than actually them falling off of you right then. Our store finally is gone and Target will be taking its place.I am beyond excited and if someone's underwear falls off in there, I will always think of you, unless it is mine!. Happy Valentine's Day my friend...xxoJudy

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    1. Target is so much better, Judy! You’ll love having one close by, but I have to tell you, I order everything from them now. I haven’t stepped into a store in two years and it’s worked out well. I used to buy so many things I didn’t need, because they are displayed so well…I still get some great things there, but I’m less distracted by all the shiny aisles. And yes, I’m sure I put on quite a show in the parking lot with those panties pasted to my back. What a mess!! Happy Valentine’s Day!! xxoo

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  36. All of my coats have Velcro and I often step out with small items attached from drying time.

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    1. Oh boy! That's exactly what happened to me. The coat was faux fur and suede and it was like a magnet. Thanks for the letting me know I'm not alone!

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  37. This story never gets old! Walking through the parking lot with ‘drawers’ on your coat , two little girls in tow, I can totally relate. Those were the days! Happy Valentines Day my girl.

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  38. Oh my gosh!!!! What a story....definitely a priceless memory I'm sure your kids and husband still enjoy:) This isn't nearly as bad, but my good friend who taught across the hall from me was standing at her board one day teaching away when all of a sudden her half slip just fell to her feet! I asked her what she did and she said she just picked it up and threw it on her desk and kept on teaching! I was just trying to post a comment on your post about your remodeling but for some reason it wouldn't let me type anything. Wanted to tell you I can't wait to see your new bedroom. The color you have now looks identical to what's in my bedroom! It's been in there for years now and I'm ready for a change. I think I still want green but a lighter, brighter green. I am so terrible at picking colors...I am interested in seeing what color you choose. Everything you do turns out perfectly!!!

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  39. So funny!! When I was in 5th grade our teacher was teaching in front of the class when suddenly her slip fell off & landed at her feet! She never even paused for breath, just picked it up walked into the closet & (presumably!) put it back on, walked right back out & kept on talking!

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  40. Haha, Kim, this is a great story! And how perfect to have your kids with you to bring attention to the scene! I can see something like this happening to me! Oh, wait, it did. My slip slid off while I was walking to work on 5th Avenue and 43rd St. Yup, just dropped to the ground in a puddle at my feet. I scooped it up and shoved it in my bag and prayed that none of my co-workers happened to see it. Who knows, No one ever said anything, but....And then there was the story of toilet paper sticking out of the back of my pants on an airplane, but we probably need to go out and have many drinks before I can share that with you, lol.

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  41. You have no idea how much I needed that belly laugh this morning, Kim! My sister and I have a lost my pantyhose at the grocery store story from the early 80s. Thanks for the laugh - too darn funny!!

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  42. HA HA.. this goes down as one of the best Valentine stories ever.


    I have a rather embarrassing story too, I should share it on the blog, you have inspired me. ;-)

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