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The Target Effect

by Courtney on August 16, 2011

If you follow me on Twitter, then you probably already know about my small victory today, but I’m still going to share them again anyways.

I had a few errands to run this afternoon, one of them being a trip to Target. Now, if you’re anything like me, then you know that a trip to Target can be trouble. Rarely can I leave the place in less than a half hour and without buying at least three extra items that weren’t originally on my list.

Tell me I’m not the only one who suffers from the “Target Effect”…?

But ohh my friends…this afternoon, I was in and out of Target in less than 10 minutes AND left only with the three items that were on my list. And I thought my last Target victory was a good one!

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Since we’re all out of coffee, I figured I’d just pick some up there since I had to go there anyway. I’ve never tried this kind before, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed that it’s decent.

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And since coffee was not consumed this morning, I made sure to grab one while I was out, which was FREE thanks to my Starbucks gift card that I won over the weekend.

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Saweeeeeet!

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I also ended up snacking on a pineapple SOYJOY bar and an apple before making my final stop.

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I’ve had a merchandise credit sitting in my purse since a little after Christmas(?!?), and decided I’d pop in today to see if there was anything worth checking out. Lucky for me, I found a couple of goodies.

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I figured that this would be a good tank to wear this coming weekend at the Healthy Living Summit, and I immediately fell in love with this Apt.9 Brooklyn Pleated Satchel. I’ve been in the market for a new bag, and I think this one will do a great job of carrying me through fall and winter. Plus, it’s even on sale!

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I really wasn’t feeling very hungry until just now, so I think I’m going to go dig in to some of our leftovers from last night’s dinner. Sautéed veggies are always delish the next day!

Questions for the Afternoon:

What kind of a purse do you usually use? Large/small? What style is your favorite?

Anyone else out there who suffers from the “Target Effect?”

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{ 64 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Melissa August 16, 2011 at 2:04 pm

So funny you wrote about this today, Courtney. I totally had my own Target victory last night. I went in to try to exchange my hairdryer because it died on me. I got it not too long ago and had the box but not the receipt. They did the exchange with no questions asked! Gotta love awesome customer service! I also managed to get out of there with only that and the 2 other items on my list. Score!

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2 Samantha @ Running and Cupcakes August 16, 2011 at 2:07 pm

I suffer, bad, from the “Target Effect”. What’s worse, is that my fave Target to go to is attached to the mall. Double bad. They have so much fun stuff – and lately, since I started blogging, I’ve been wanting cuter placemats and colorful plates. So I’ve been avoiding Target, until I HAVE to go!

I love bags – I have a giraffe print one right now that’s pretty big, but it’s getting worn out. Thinking of hitting up my other “danger” store – Kohl’s – for a fall/winter bag soon!
Samantha @ Running and Cupcakes recently posted..Happy Monday (Spreading the Love – Day 33)

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3 Jordan @ food, sweat, and beers August 16, 2011 at 2:08 pm

I just checked online…. my nearest Target is 1.7 miles away.

Literally, the Target effect is a risk I take nearly every day (as I pass this particular Target frequently.)

Need some Morningstar Patties? Come out with an $40 tower fan.

Ran out of razors? Walk out with six new bathing suits.

Thank you for bringing awareness of this dangerous malady to the forefront of the blogosphere. Lists, timers, only paying in cash… We’ve gotta fight it the best that we can.
Jordan @ food, sweat, and beers recently posted..Minding My Peas and Qs

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4 Ashley@MyFoodNFitnessDiaries August 16, 2011 at 2:14 pm

I usually use a large purse which has its pros and cons! I love that I can carry my whole life in it, but it’s not always easy to find your keys or phone. ;)

Oh my, I definitely have the “Target Effect”… How can you not??
Ashley@MyFoodNFitnessDiaries recently posted..What [Was] For Dinner: (Cauliflower Crusted) Veggie Pizza and Salad

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5 Alexa @ Simple Eats August 16, 2011 at 2:16 pm

Honestly, I feel like I can NEVER leave Target without spending over $50…it’s sick! Love the tank top!
Alexa @ Simple Eats recently posted..Stuff I Love

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6 Hope August 16, 2011 at 2:18 pm

I feel the same way about Target! I always end up buying things that I had absolutely no intention of buying! Happens every time!

I love that tank and purse you bought! Kohl’s has some really cute things! :) Speaking of which, I have a credit and a coupon. I should totally check out the new fall items!
Hope recently posted..Creamy Taco Mac…

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7 Lauren @ Sugar Coated Sisters August 16, 2011 at 2:23 pm

I have a satchel style Coach bag that is perfecttttt for my commuter lifestyle. lots of pockets and enough space to stash my lunch, ipad, and a bunch of other junk.

target is one scarybeautiful store – good job stickin to your plan, it sure is hard to do at target!!

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8 janetha @ meals & moves August 16, 2011 at 2:24 pm

I for sure suffer from the Target effect! Ha, good for you–I bet that was hard.

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9 KitKat @ Pursuit of Happiness August 16, 2011 at 2:25 pm

Haha the Target Effect is no joke! I went in last week for a jug to make sangria in and came out with a dress, 2 pairs of shoes ($9.99 each!!!), toilet paper, hangers and thankfully the jug. (The effect seems to also have me leaving half the time without the item I originally went in for!)

Love the tank! :)
KitKat @ Pursuit of Happiness recently posted..I can’t close my work pants. Insert breakdown.

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10 Claire @ Live and Love to Eat August 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm

I usually carry big bags, but my shoulders hate me for it! The bigger the bag, the more random junk I carry around!
Claire @ Live and Love to Eat recently posted..Pizza Party

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11 Bri @ Fashion Snack August 16, 2011 at 2:28 pm

I love buying purses so I have lots in all different sizes. I definitely use the smaller ones the most though! My favorite style is currently cross-body.
Bri @ Fashion Snack recently posted..Never Too Late For A Birthday Celebration

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12 Kelly August 16, 2011 at 2:31 pm

I am so bad that I will go the grocery store and spend more money on the same products I can find at Target simply because in the long run it will save me money by not going stepping foot into Target!
Kelly recently posted..do you ever

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13 Khushboo August 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Love the new purchases! I tend to go for big bags, I feel like Mary Poppins but I always manage to fill em up!
Courtney, I have a bone to pick you! After your numerous delicious-looking pics of iced coffee, I’ve been brewing a batch every night for the next morning and I can see it becoming a habit!! ;)
Khushboo recently posted..Why hello there, Hunger!

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14 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 2:37 pm

Hahaha, but that’s a good habit because you’re not going out and buying it! YAY! ;)

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15 Khushboo August 17, 2011 at 12:36 am

Haha that is true…very true :)! Caffeine, whaaat!
Khushboo recently posted..Why hello there, Hunger!

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16 Katherine August 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Seriously, Target is such a trap! I go in for one item and come out with at least 5. I’m like a kid in a candy store.

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17 Corey @ Family Fresh Meals August 16, 2011 at 2:34 pm

Hehehe… I love there is a term for my “disease.” THE TARGET EFFECT! I am LOL because I just got back from there also. I had 5 things on my list, and left with at least 50 items of random crap….. $200.00 more poor too! hehehe
Oh well. I do heart Target!
Corey @ Family Fresh Meals recently posted..Maple Candied Bacon ( Food Network)

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18 Katie @ Plates and Paste August 16, 2011 at 2:37 pm

Yes, I think the Target Effect affects everyone!

That purse is so cute! Def my style, and I’m kind of picky. I go through phases where I carry the same purse FORever. Currently it’s a big brown bag…it’s easy to toss a lot in it and it goes with all outfits. I usually switch over to something smaller though when going out on the town :)
Katie @ Plates and Paste recently posted..Shake It

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19 Kathryn August 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm

I love Target and have a hard time leaving without extras (when we aren’t on a super tight budget). I really need a new purse, but can’t afford one right now. I’m hoping to get a new job soon (been without for quite some time) and hopefully I’ll be able to get a new one then. I love having big purses, but try to start with small ones, otherwise I wind up with a 40lb bag. :(
I think my next purse will be medium sized, as it helps with 2 kids and all their stuff, lol.

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20 Ruthie Hart August 16, 2011 at 2:45 pm

I dont have the Target Effect but the Hobby Lobby effect (if you arent familiar…it is Michaels on steroids with home decor, furniture, fabric, etc). I live WAY to close and pop in there once a week at least! And I have been using the same purse for months (maybe even over a year!) time to switch it up!
Ruthie Hart recently posted..Homemade sugar cookies and buttercream frosting

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21 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 2:46 pm

We actually *just* had a Hobby Lobby open near us…but I haven’t made it inside yet.
Sounds like I’m missing out!? ;)

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22 Ruthie Hart August 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm

oh guuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrllllll. Be ready to spend hours and hours and come out with tons of stuff you dont need hehe (cheap though!) Actually a fore warning…EVERYTHING goes on sale. If scrapbook paper isnt 50% off this week, it will be in the next 2 weeks. They have beautiful home decor and even have Christmas stuff out! Let me know what you think of it!
Ruthie Hart recently posted..Homemade sugar cookies and buttercream frosting

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23 Mary @ Bites and Bliss August 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm

I don’t know how they do it but it’s so true! Everything it that store seems so much better than in any other store.
Mary @ Bites and Bliss recently posted..Before the early birds

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24 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 10:31 pm

Hey Mary! Just wanted to let you know that you were the winner of Christina’s Signature Tree Giveaway! :)
http://www.sweettoothsweetlife.com/2011/08/12/not-unproductive/

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25 Maria@La_Piattini August 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm

Target definitely sucks me in! But the store that this seems to happen to me the most at is Wegman’s! I can go there with a list of a few items and come back like $50 later wondering what happened LOL
Maria@La_Piattini recently posted..Feather Party

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26 courtney @ cupcakedynamite August 16, 2011 at 2:50 pm

ahhh I totally suffer from the Target Effect. The symptoms worsen when you live in NYC and the trips are few and far between!! cute finds :)
courtney @ cupcakedynamite recently posted..gym review: david barton

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27 Aine @ Something to Chew Over August 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm

No Target in Ireland! :(

I recently bought a roomy satchel and I love it! My hands are free and I can jam so much stuff in there.
Aine @ Something to Chew Over recently posted..Product review – Cathy’s Spelt for Health

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28 Girl in the pink August 16, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Cute bag!

I love oversized bags and oversized cluthes! No dainty bags for me :)
Girl in the pink recently posted..Triple Chocolate Brownies in a Slow Cooker?

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29 Kim August 16, 2011 at 3:01 pm

I love target and I love that little tank top. We actually are moving to Utah – where they apparently LOVE target even more than Seattle – every one is a super target! I can’t wait for the target effect :)
Kim recently posted..The Best Laid Plans

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30 Alyssa @ Life of bLyss August 16, 2011 at 3:02 pm

I’ve actually ditched the purse for a wristlet. It makes like SO MUCH EASIER.

aaand I seriously think every girl suffers from the Target effect!
Alyssa @ Life of bLyss recently posted..The Day I Ran Next To Justin Timberlake

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31 Rebecca August 16, 2011 at 3:06 pm

It’s hard to get in and out of target in only a few minutes. Generally I like larger purses as I tend to carry a lot-including notebooks and even books.
Rebecca recently posted..Delayed Move and Crazy Muffins!

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32 Krissie J August 16, 2011 at 3:09 pm

I am a large purse girl. My collection is rapidly growing. Right now I’m using a shoulder tote from Coach that is the loveliest shade of royal blue. I will likely be carrying it on Sat, I could probably fit a house in it. ;) As I said on Twitter, unless Target is on fire, I cannot get in and out like that in 10 min. Haha!
Krissie J recently posted..Make A Sweet Omelet

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33 Lisa @ Sunny Seed Stories August 16, 2011 at 3:16 pm

Yeah, I’m pretty sure the Target Effect is universal! To avoid it, you have to avoid two things: wandering (which I love) and becoming sidetracked (which I also love). Or I guess you could just avoid Target, but who would want to do that? :)
Lisa @ Sunny Seed Stories recently posted..Lisa’s Story #11: My First Blog

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34 Jamie aka "Sometimes Healthy" Girl August 16, 2011 at 3:17 pm

I definitely suffer the Target effect! I’m the girl that never walks out without spending at least $100. Good thing there isn’t one too close to me in NYC :-)
Jamie aka “Sometimes Healthy” Girl recently posted..Cupcakes, Baseball and Beer

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35 Brittany August 16, 2011 at 3:19 pm

Target is so dangerous for me. I like big purses AND small it depends on my mood and how much stuff I need!
Brittany recently posted..Easy Peasy

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36 Shayla @ The Good Life August 16, 2011 at 3:22 pm

I definitely suffer from the Target effect…in fact I was in there the other day and thought to myself “I’m doing a Courtney b/c I’m buying things that aren’t on my list!!” ;)

I love my old fav Louis Vuitton bags that were gifts to me…but I also love simple leather hobo bags that are big enough to fit all my whole life in there!
Shayla @ The Good Life recently posted..Sushi Love – Ozumo

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37 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Hahaha ;)

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38 Abby @ Abz 'n' Oats August 16, 2011 at 3:24 pm

Yay! That is definitely a victory! :) Starbucks gift cards are such a good prize. That would be a great gift if anyone ever wanted ideas for me! lol. I used to be the biggest purse fanatic (well I still am I just can’t afford them anymore). I love Coach purses with all my heart so right now I have been using a small one just because it is the only one I have and I can’t afford another one. Someday :)
Abby @ Abz ‘n’ Oats recently posted..On Repeat

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39 Lindsay@ In Sweetness and In Health August 16, 2011 at 3:30 pm

The top and purse are sooooo cute! I tend to like medium size purses for everyday, and smaller ones for night! I got an iced coffee from DD this morning and it made me think of you :). And yes, I tend to get the target effect…that store is just so amazing
Lindsay@ In Sweetness and In Health recently posted..A Whole Foods and Movie Kind of Day

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40 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 3:59 pm

Awww, I love it! :-D

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41 Rosa - Fitness, Food, Fulfilled August 16, 2011 at 4:05 pm

I love love love Target. It’s one of my favorite stores to go to and I always buy way more than what I originally went in there for, especially now that most of them are part grocery store!

Love the purse! The satchel style is my favorite, mine is in white. I need a darker colored one for the fall and winter though. With back to school sales going on I might just pop out to get one!
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42 Erica @ For the Sake of Cake August 16, 2011 at 4:11 pm

Oh, I definitely suffer from the Target effect! I have a love/hate relationship with Target because I just can’t help myself in there!

I usually use a medium sized bag! Currently I’m using a Coach hobo bag!
Erica @ For the Sake of Cake recently posted..I’m Back!

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43 Liz @ IHeartVegetables August 16, 2011 at 4:22 pm

Dude, the target effect is REAL. And I’ve never beat it. Good thing I got a bunch of target gift cards for my birthday. I can’t NOT buy everything!
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44 Aska @ Finding My Happy Ending August 16, 2011 at 4:23 pm

I definitely suffer from the Target effect! They have the cutest stuff. Luckily when I was there yesterday I only bought the two things I needed- yay for victory!

Right now I’m using an over-the-shoulder bag (from Target!). They are so easy to walk with and great to travel with! Otherwise I like medium sized bags.
Aska @ Finding My Happy Ending recently posted..Reasons to Smile

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45 Shari @ Chicago Cuisine Critique August 16, 2011 at 4:24 pm

You crack me up. I was quite impressed when I saw your quick trip to Target. None of my trips to Target are every quick. Too many goodies to look at and browse through. :)
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46 Amy @ My Life as a Lazy Girl August 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm

I definitely get the target effect. Whenever I’m there I can’t help but go thru the shoes and clothing sections, which inevitably leads to buying multiple items. Not to mention the cute picture frames, dvds, i think this list could go on forEVER.

I’ve really gotten into crossbody bags. I have two that I alternate between. But when necessary I carry a large purse.
Amy @ My Life as a Lazy Girl recently posted..I’m a Graduate! (Again)

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47 Lauren @ Chocolate, Cheese and Wine August 16, 2011 at 4:39 pm

I really, really suffer from the Target effect – I try not to go there more than once a week even though I want to go every, single day.

I am a medium-large purse person. I wish I could use small purses because they are so much lighter, but I just can’t.
Lauren @ Chocolate, Cheese and Wine recently posted..Barbeque Chicken Melt Sandwich – An Easy Recipe

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48 Laura @ LauraLikesDesign August 16, 2011 at 5:24 pm

Oh man, I always get sucked into the Target effect. Sometimes I go when I don’t even need anything just so I can look around. They are always switching up their aisles with new things and I just love wandering aimlessly throughout the store. The worst/best is when there is a holiday coming up–I just LOVE those seasonal aisles filled with candy and decorations–it makes me so happy inside! Sounds so lame, but oh so true!

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49 Mallory @ It's Only Life August 16, 2011 at 5:25 pm

Cute tank! I could see myself wear that.

I carry one of those obnoxiously large longchamp bags. It’s from college, where I would stuff all my books/laptop in it, but now it’s basically a portable trash can. I throw EVERYTHING in there, it’s ridiculous! It needs to be filtered at least once a week!
Mallory @ It’s Only Life recently posted..Just Another Monday Night

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50 candice August 16, 2011 at 5:41 pm

I’m pretty sure every female on earth suffers from the target effect! haha! I hardly ever walk out of there with just the things on my list.. Thats why I usually go with a need list.. and make a WANT list while I’m walking around..
I have like 3 bags.. none of which are a purse..
Gym bag with all my stuff for teaching/workouts etc.
Diaper bag one for running errands
and diaper bag 2 for toys and such for all day expeditions. I can’t wait to be able to use a actual purse again one day. ;)
candice recently posted..vanilla almond granola

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51 Georgia @ Trying Something New August 16, 2011 at 6:14 pm

I loved this post, and I stumbled upon this little comic that totally reminded me of you, and this post! I hope you find it as hilarious as I did…
http://ragecomics.memebase.com/2011/08/16/rage-comics-its-never-a-quick-trip-to-target/
Georgia @ Trying Something New recently posted..Lost Camera Cord

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52 Lindsey August 16, 2011 at 6:46 pm

I like larger purses for sure! I can fit all my stuff in them :) I also really like the cross body style right now, since they are hands free and good for traveling.
I love Target but sadly there aren’t any (yet) in Canada – I cannot wait till next week when we go to the States and I can go to Target! That coffee flavor looks awesome, I might have to try some :)
Lindsey recently posted..Library Date

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53 Hannah August 16, 2011 at 6:49 pm

i do not know anyone who does not!!
i went to target today to get a bday card, play dough and maybe something else.
left with fase wash, body wash, 2 bananas, a drink, gum, play dough, and a card. – unsuccessful. i did not allow mys self in clothing, shoes or makeup! that was successful!
Hannah recently posted..Interesting Reads

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54 Shana August 16, 2011 at 8:01 pm

I have Terminal Target Effect. It has been in the advanced stages since we move into our new house which is.right.next.to.Target. Sadly, there is no cure. Symptom management includes no more than two target trips per week, no more than $20 in my wallet at a time, and use of the buddy system. Please send donations to the Terminal Target Effect Survivor’s Fund. All proceeds go directly to Target…er….treatment.
Shana recently posted..Crunch Time

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55 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 8:18 pm

LOL…this literally made me laugh out loud! :-D

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56 Jane @ In the Pink and Green August 16, 2011 at 8:27 pm

I totally suffer from the Target Effect, so brava to you for using some self-control and sticking to your list…much better than I usually do! :)

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57 Kaitlyn August 16, 2011 at 8:44 pm

cuuuute sunglasses!!! what are they?

and ahh im so excited for you about your bread! i know how badly you’ve been wanting a successful loaf with that thing!

and no, its not just you. the Target effect is a curse and I am always immediately sucked into its spell.
Kaitlyn recently posted..oreos for heros

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58 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 8:47 pm

No idea, haha! Got them from JCPenney last year :)

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59 Danica August 16, 2011 at 9:08 pm

I absolutely fall into the Target shopping problem! Sometimes I make myself go to a completely different store so I don’t fall into its trap–you deserve a reward for only getting what you needed today!
by the way–Love the new font!
Danica recently posted..Muffins (that won’t give you a muffin top)

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60 Lindsay August 16, 2011 at 9:37 pm

Hey, you came to Kohls today?! Did you go to the one on Central Ave. in Colonie? I was working all day.. It would have been awesome to meet you!

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61 Courtney August 16, 2011 at 10:14 pm

Awww, I was actually at the one in Clifton Park! But I’ll have to remember that for next time :)

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62 Siena August 16, 2011 at 10:03 pm

Target is amazing! I feel like many people have the target effect! You are not alone in this! haha :-)
Siena recently posted..Fav Finds: Sunglasses

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63 Amy August 17, 2011 at 3:30 pm

I usually carry a large purse. I like to be able to get my snacks and all my junk in there. Every time I buy a small purse it ends up at consignment.

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64 Emily Anne August 19, 2011 at 9:44 am

i totally agree! i banned myself from going to target last month… did wonders on my wallet! :) glad to know i’m not alone!

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