This past weekend we went into Stride Rite to get Hayley’s shoe size. We were lured in by the 5 dollar off coupon and the fact that she would be fitted by a “certified fit specialist”. I had envisioned this cool machine in which she would place her cute little feet to be analyzed precisely resulting in her exact size. In reality it was a kid taking time out from his break using one of those old slider things I remember from when I was a kid. Hayley looked at the kid and slider with great suspicion. She knew something was up. The kid gently place Hayley’s foot in the slider and stood her up and decided that she was a size 5. 5? I exclaimed. I thought she was maybe a 3 or 4 tops. Hayley may be cursed with big ugly feet like her mom. Anyway we proceeded to peruse the overly priced Stride rite shoes. The average price seem to be around 35 dollars. We found a cute high top black patent pair for fewer than 30 and with the coupon we considered the expense, so we had the kid get us a pair in size 5. He didn’t have those in that size but he came out with another pair equally cute. Together we struggled to put Hayley in the shoes. Then we stood her up to lean against an ottoman. She looked at the shoes, shaking her feet then looked at me and the kid as if to ask “what have you done to me?” In the end we decided the price was too much, so once again the guilt of short changing Hayley set in. Later talking to my mom on the phone she said back in the day stride rite did have a fancy X-ray machine they used to determine a child’s shoe size, and parents felt like it was worth the expensive price tag knowing that the shoes fit precisely. But then it came out the unnecessary X-rays especially for a child wasn’t the best idea. Now stride rite uses the old fashion slider thing like everyone else, but the price never went down. “They out grow them so fast Stef, don’t feel bad about not spending the money. Just go to Target.” my mom advised. Today before work I went to Target, I have been obsessed with getting Hayley black patent shoes to wear with her Christmas and birthday outfits and I want to get a photo her in her Christmas outfit before it gets too small. There they were in the pre-walker section, cute little black patent shoes for 9.99! I also threw in some pink sneakers. The fives looked huge and I was again worried that Hayley was cursed with my feet. Then I made my way to the slipper isle and saw the leather shoes I had gotten Hayley only a few months ago. Hayley has been cruising around so much that she has already worn them out, and I considered getting her another pair. I checked the size chart on the back and a size 5 is for children 6-12 months! So she is right on target feet wise. Whew! Now the only thing to worry about is what to call her “First pair of shoes” for all prosperity. Are they the beautiful little pink slipper shoes I got her to take her home form the hospital, that she has probably only worn twice? Or are they the much used leather shoes that are more like slippers as well? Or are they the first dressy shoes and first sneakers I bought today? Old and new, delicate and worn, I guess they are all firsts in someway.