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Five Crazy Thoughts about Black Friday: Gone Too Far? {Thanksgiving is about Family}

crazy turkey As I was growing up, Black Friday didn’t really mean much to me. I would sleep late and be lazy around the house because I was out of school for one more day. We ate leftover turkey sandwiches and lots of pie and sometimes we would hear about how all of the people were out shopping. My parents worked jobs that only gave them one day off so they were back at work on Friday and they never shopped the sales on that day.

In college, I worked for Toys R Us for several years so Black Friday meant leaving my family in the late evening on Thanksgiving. I would drive back to Austin and be up way too early so I could watch all the excitement of the shoppers and help them find the great deals. Some years I would be the one picking up donuts and coffee to hand out to the long line of people waiting to storm the doors of the toy store. Usually at some point I ended up on a register (my favorite place during Black Friday) and I would be the cashier that was moving the fastest and greeting people the most. I took pride in being the fastest moving line and people would always tell me how grateful they were because of that!

crazy Black Friday shopping After college, Black Friday became a tradition. My older sister, younger sister, sometimes my niece, and I would start planning early on Thursday where we would go and what we would buy. We would map it out (always starting at Target in Tyler) and make lists of the “awesome deals” we were going to pick up. I was always the one who was “cutting it close” in gathering up money for the shopping trip and for the past few years I was getting money on the DAY of shopping…how scary and frustrating! Regardless, it is a BLAST! We love planning what time we would have to go to bed so we could all wake up early, drive an hour to Tyler (because Palestine only has one Walmart…and nothing else), and be in line at a decent time.

We have always started shopping at Target because there is a variety of great deals and we love the Tyler Target. We have watched them evolve in how they handle the lines and the shoppers and each year it gets better and better. They are organized and friendly and really cater to their crazy Black Friday shoppers.

A couple of years ago, Toys R Us opened at 10pm and Hubby and I went over together to get a train set for The Boy. We froze in the rain, ran in to get the train set, and were back out in less than 30 minutes. After that experience, Hubby said he would never do it again. I drove back to Palestine, only to get back in the car and head back with my sisters for more “real” shopping.

Last year, the stores were opening at midnight and while we groaned about it, we were right there in line and ready to shop. However, by 5am we were done…physically…and headed home. We felt bummed and cheated and we did NOT like it at all.

This year, the stores are opening as early as 8pm and we are NOT happy about it at all. Black Friday is…on FRIDAY! This is why midnight made some sense to us, although we didn’t like it. Opening on Thursday at 8pm is ridiculous and insensitive to the true meaning of Thanksgiving. Not only are the shoppers missing out on their family time – which is truly their choice – but the employees are missing out as well!

While I don’t talk politics or much about religion on this blog, I do talk a lot about family and believe in family values. I believe that this race to open their stores earlier than the competition speaks some to our society now and the decline of family values. That is as far as I will go with that for now.

Thanksgiving family

We need to bring the family and tradition and the THANKfulness back into THANKSgiving!!

I asked on my Facebook page last week for some others’ thoughts and got a little bit of mixed reactions, but I would love to hear more of your thoughts!!

crazy black friday

thoughts on black friday

more thoughts on black friday

So, will I shop on Black Friday this year? – Heck yeah (I will be with my sisters for Sisterpalooza and we already have the t-shirts)! Am I happy about it? – No way! Will I be more likely to support small businesses who continue to support family values and stay closed on Thanksgiving? – You BETCHA!!

Five Crazy Thoughts About Black Friday

As you are heading out this year for your crazy Black Friday shopping, whether you are shopping on Thursday evening or Friday, think about these crazy thoughts:

  1. Thanksgiving is about Family and each employee that you see working so hard, whether they are working because they love it or working to support their family, they are missing out on some portion of a family holiday about giving thanks. THANK THE EMPLOYEES FOR THIS!!
  2. Random Acts of Kindness go a long way and if you are shopping on Thursday evening, you are choosing to miss out on some family time, and so is the person next to you. DO SOMETHING NICE FOR SOMEONE ELSE!!
  3. Black Friday is just that – Friday! While it may be too tempting to miss out on that great deal on Thursday evening (it will be for me) take time to SUPPORT SMALL BUSINESSES OR COMPANIES WHO WAIT FOR FRIDAY!!
  4. Kindness and Thankfulness go hand in hand. BE KIND ON BLACK FRIDAY!!
  5. Whether you agree with the companies who are opening on Thursday or not, voice your opinion. CONSIDER SIGNING A PETITION ASKING TARGET TO GIVE THANKSGIVING BACK!!

I want to know your thoughts, so…GO!!


  1. Jan says:

    Ok here’s a joke… Two little boys were getting ready for breakfast in their room. The older one says “it’s about time we started swearing.” The younger one agrees. The older one says ” when we go down for breakfast, I’m gonna say HELL and you say DAMN.” The younger one nods and nods. They both go to breakfast and their mom says to the older one, “what would you like for breakfast?” The older one says, “Aw hell Mom I’ll just have some Cheerios.” WHAPPPPPPPPPP! The mom sends the older one to his room. Mom looks at the younger boy and says “And WHAT would you like for breakfast??” The younger boy, remembering what happened to his older brother, says, ” Well it’s not gonna be the damn Cheerios!” (LOLLLL)

    • janet says:

      I think I would go for the Lucky Charms! :) Thanks for the laugh. 😉

  2. I totally agree with you that Black Friday should start on Friday, not Thursday! My family, mom, grandma, aunt, sister and cousins all love to get the great deals that Black Friday offers, but we all made a conscious decision that we would not shorten our Thanksgiving family get together to go shopping. We all went to my grandma’s house on Thanksgiving, and at 8pm when everyone else left their families to go shopping, we put up Grandma’s Christmas tree and all of us helped decorate it. We spent that whole evening together as a family. We did go shopping on Friday but we were all rested, with a good feeling inside that we had made our Thanksgiving a great one!
    Tammy Allgood-Hemmerling recently posted..Lucky Emerald’s Giveaway Linky. Family Friendly only please!My Profile

  3. desiree says:

    i did the black friday thing a couple of year ago but i wait till the next day here they still have the stuff on sale but next year i might be doing toys are us for the grand kids

  4. michelle warner says:

    i hate black friday shopping, its crazy and people are so rude and nasty. i usually never get what i go for, because its gone by then. i like your five crazy thoughts about black friday, i have to keep them in mind, thanks for the great post

  5. Joy Person says:

    Black Friday is becoming ridiculous especially with the stores opening on a Thursday. I waited until Friday and I’m not one of the crazy shoppers that has to get every great deal. I get what I can from my list and then I move on. I always thank the workers because insure they would rather be home or shopping themselves.

  6. Becky M says:

    I can’t ever seem to find the energy to get out on Black Friday. I’m usually so tired from all the cooking & family get togethers on Thursday that all I want to do is sleep on Black Friday! I did go online this year and get a few really good deals, but you couldn’t have paid me to get out with all the crowds! Well, maybe someone could’ve paid me. I’m sure I have my price. 😉

  7. Sarah L says:

    The closest I’ve ever come to shopping on Black Friday was one year when I dropped off a friend so she could wait in line and then came back for her. I’d rather shop at thrift stores.

  8. rachel says:

    i dont really do black friday but his year was different. the xbox was dieing so got a ps3 from amazon for $200 on thanksgiving. we also went to microcenter to get a laptop and printer black friday weekend. i definetely saved lots of money which i was very happy about

  9. I have never done the Black Friday shopping thing. I hate crowds and would lose it standing in a long line. I agree it is starting to get a little out of control with the stores opening on Thanksgiving night. Next year they’ll be calling it Black Thursday
    Teresha recently posted..The Kids’ Log: November 18-24, 2012My Profile

  10. I went out on Saturday to support small businesses and did not go out Thursday night for Black Friday
    shopping. I did do some online shopping.

  11. Darlene Ysaguirre says:

    I agree I think Black Friday Should Be On Friday..It Takes Away From The Holiday

  12. Kayleen Considine says:

    Okay, so I’m officially bummed out. I HAD to have a Roku. I had to have it a few days ago because I was bored. So now I find out I could have had it a LOT cheaper if I had just waited a few days and gotten it at Amazon. Of course, then I would have had to wait even longer to have it shipped because I’m not paying more to have it shipped sooner. I don’t do Black Friday. I’ve never done it because we’re always broke. But the Roku is my Christmas present this year. Oh well, live and learn I guess.

  13. Sandra says:

    I agree that the stores are having more importance than family time. I feel especially for the employees who have to brave through those days, some even having to skip out on family time. Although I’m sure people who are unable to shop on Friday might appreciate it, it still bothers me that a good portion of people essentially get screwed over by it.

    I don’t like bothering with Black Friday anyway. I feel that the deals they have aren’t as good as they use to be (for many reasons I’m sure), so it seems a bit of a hassle. I rather just order online where it’s cheaper anyway and enjoy the time home with my family :)

    I do think it’s a great idea to extend kindness if you’re out that day, especially to help the employees out a little. If you see something fallen on the ground, maybe pick it up.

    Thanks for the post~

  14. Cynthia C says:

    I think it’s gone to the extreme. I saw on the news today that people are already camped out in lines.

  15. Karen says:

    I agree that it is supposed to be Black Friday not Black Thursday! Why do we have to have the stores open on Thanksgiving! I saw some of the Black Friday ads, and they have the sales on Thursday, then to get the other sales on Black Friday, you have to come back and get the price. I think they need to open the stores on Black Friday! It is not fair to the workers who have to cut short their Thanksgiving Holiday to go to work. It is all about the stores and them getting money!

  16. Sara Campbell says:

    I also think stores should not open on Thanksgiving. It should be a time for family and friends. It should not intrude on that time. I think that more fights will happen since they are opening that day. Thanksgiving is a time to to be thankful, not for seeing people fight over stupid things, like toys and things like that.

  17. Carol L says:

    You 5 crazy thoughts aren’t crazy at all. The Family values seem to be slipping a little more each year. It saddens me as I see stores opening earlier and earlier to beat the competition but everyone has a choice. I’m all for the stores giving the Holidays back. :) But whoever is going to be out there be careful and Happy Holidays.
    Carol L

  18. Mary Beth Elderton says:

    I completely agree that Black Friday has morphed into something kind of ugly. It is no longer fun for me. I have always loved the hustle of Holiday shopping, but this is something different. What happens to Thanksgiving when the stores open that night?

    *side note: You live in Palestine?! I spent much of my childhood in Tyler :)

  19. Debra F says:

    I have gone out on Black Friday once or twice but to be honest — I never came home with any super deals. Around here there are actually some stores that are going to open up early Thanksgiving morning. I don’t think it is right for those people that work at the stores that have no choice in the matter! We need to go back to the horse and buggy era (Over the river and through the woods, to Grandmother’s place we go!)

  20. Raine says:

    I agree, it’s gotten out of control, how can you relax on Thanksgiving with your family, watch movies (nap) when you are gearing up to rush through dinner to go shopping. I love to find great deals, but not at that cost-family is more important than material things. I want my my Black friday on Friday and to be fun, not stressful. I enjoyed reading your memories, great post.

  21. lisa lo says:

    Some people don’t have family so they don’t mind working.

  22. I do not think that the stores should be open on Thursday afternoon/ evening. You are cutting into the Thanksgiving holiday and the family gathering. It is also not fair to the workers,

  23. Dawna Newman says:

    I worked for Retail for a long time first Hills , Ames then Walmart . To be honest working Black Friday kind of turned me off on shopping that day. I wish I would have had a customer like you through my line . A simple thank you would have made my day.

    • JanetGoingCrazy says:

      That is what I’m thinking too. When I was a cashier at TRU and would get the “thank you”s for my line moving so fast, it would just warm my heart and keep me going a little longer!

  24. yes, i miss when there was a day just to relax. now its all about making money
    Alicia Keen recently posted..Honoring Joseph Pilates’ lifeMy Profile

    • JanetGoingCrazy says:

      It’s just so disheartening. :(

  25. Becky Davis says:

    I have never shopped on black friday because cyper sunday i do every year,

    • JanetGoingCrazy says:

      I may have to do some Cyber Monday this year. 😉

  26. Ann Cluck says:

    While I am all for saving a buck, I think all the sales connected to the family holidays are way too much and the reason(s) behind the holidays are forgotten.

    Also, if you are going to try and save money, shop with the small business owners and direct sales people. WE have to work hard to make a buck.

    • JanetGoingCrazy says:

      Small Business Saturday!!

  27. I have never shopped on BLACK FRIDAY-if anything I have a tendency to hide on that day–since I entered the world of blogging I find it easier to shop with people on line!! How do I feel about the stores opening earlier and earlier–I don’t really like it one little bit–I realize the economy isn’t the greatest and their sales have gone down–but really–it disturbs me that people have to work on Thanksgiving–they should be home with their families–
    Michele recently posted..$25 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway – Ends 12/20My Profile

    • JanetGoingCrazy says:

      I truly think they would make the same, if not more if they stuck with the 4-6am openings. 6am preferably. I think I’m going to be too tired to spend too long shopping if I start at 8pm!!

  28. Gena says:

    Janet, I had never thought about it that way. Hubby and I went “Black Friday” shopping for the first time ever last year….at 10 PM on Thursday and it was fun, but we couldn’t find what we wanted and ended up with something else. ha! But I didn’t even stop to consider all those people that were there on THANKSGIVING with their families elsewhere! If I were a spouse of one of those employees, I’d be pretty mad! I like shopping on Thursday night because we’re usually with family so that means free baby-sitting (while the kids are asleep) and it’s not quite the black friday madness. I think this year we’ll just stay at home and order online. :) But then that makes me feel bad for all of the people working so hard to get my packages out. *sigh* What Americans do for business and better deals. I guess Black Friday IS the best option of the crazy shopping madness!
    Gena recently posted..Submit Your Funny Wedding Photo and Win a Second Honeymoon!My Profile

    • JanetGoingCrazy says:

      You know, I have read some reactions online and people are saying that they like shopping on Thursday evening because it is a time they can shop with family and like I said in the beginning my parents couldn’t shop on Friday because they worked so that would have been a good solution for them. I know that people volunteer to work because they may get extra pay and that helps their families in the long run…it just seems like the true intention is to be the first store and beat the others. Once people started bringing up these negative reasons is when the defenders brought in these positives. I know there are arguments for both sides. I just needed to get it off my chest, I guess. Haha!! :)

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