The Girl in the Cupcake Hat

The Crankee Yankee and I went up to Freeport, Me the other day. While it was quite cold, the day was sunny and bright. The Crankee Yankee had promised me a warm coat from LL Bean as one of his Christmas gifts to me, so I was looking forward to the trip.

It was a cold, crisp day with lots of sunshine, and, blessedly, no wind. Everyone was out and about, from babies in strollers to folks our age and older; pink-cheeked and smiling. The smell of fresh-ground coffee was in the air, and everyone seemed to be cheerful and glad to be outside.

Being the frugal Yankees that we are, we headed first for the outlet store. My goal was to find not just a warm coat, but also a bright purple warm coat. In the outlet store, however, the choices are somewhat limited, but still good.

We found a pretty three quarter-length coat in a beautiful pomegranate color. I tried it on, but over my heavy sweater it was too snug. A winter coat needs to work easily with such winter gear to be effective. Nothing else seemed to catch my eye, so we moved on to the main store.

After a long and pleasant time in the main store where I looked at and tried on several warm jackets and coats, I came up empty. The coats I really liked were way out of budget (and I can fall right out of love when the price doesn’t work for me), so I passed them by.

We left the store and just for the heck of it, went back to the outlet store. I went through the racks again without much hope, but—wonder of wonders, there was a beautiful coat that met all my requirements. It fit as though it was made just for me, it was warm (the tag said it was effective to -35 degrees!), and there were zippered pockets and a hood.

It wasn’t purple, but it was that shade of deep sky blue that brings to mind the lake on a bright summer day. Or the sky in the fall when the geese fly by in a massive V formation, or the bright irresistible blue of Lego blocks. I loved it—and it fit and it was on sale!

As we walked happily out of the store and headed for the car, we walked by a little girl and her mom. The little girl had beautiful curly hair spilling out from beneath a wool hat that was shaped and decorated like a big pink cupcake.

We stopped and told her how much we loved that hat. Her mother laughed and said that it had been a gift; she said that she initially thought it was pretty garish. However, her daughter loved it and wore it nearly every day.

That little girl reminded us of our oldest granddaughter, Ava, who definitely has her own style. I knew that she would love a hat like that. Then I thought “who are you kidding? YOU would love a hat like that!” (And I’d wear it proudly, too!)

So the Crankee Yankee and I drove home, happy and content in each other’s company. I was thrilled with my Christmas present, and went to sleep that night smiling about how much I would wear and love that beautiful blue coat.

Before sleep took over, I wondered if I could find two matching cupcake hats; one for Ava and one for me. After all, what sets off a new coat better than a warm hat that looks like a pastry?

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