The first trick in using gift cards is to remember to actually bring the gift cards with you. Check! (I'm not admitting to how many failed attempts we've clocked for this particular endeavor.)
Actually, that's really the only trick. Otherwise, it's pretty easy to spend money on teddy bears.
Everyone else in our crew has 3 Build-a-Bears, and Ribby only had one, so we decided it would only be fair to even it out.
Over the Christmas shopping season, we were NOT impressed with the selection in any of the several locations we visited. But, apparently Valentine's Day is an AWESOME time to Build-a-Bear! These animals were SO precious! And there were a few others we'd still like to add to the collection some day...
So, without further ado, meet Lubbas the Bear and Lisa Leopard!
All in all, we had a good time. But a lot of that has to do with the fact that we adore anything that makes Ribby happy, and Ribby was pretty happy to get her new bears.
The ladies manning the store location were perfectly functional cashiers, but there was no magic whatsoever in their construction of either animal. I miss the days when Build-a-Bear employees made the whole building-a-bear experience feel like the kids was actually building a darned bear. They used to speak in sweet, happy voices. They'd talk the kid through pressing the foot pedal on the stuffing machine like they were filling the bear's crevices with a magic like no other. They'd let the kids rub their hands together and warm each heart before it was kissed and placed inside to radiate love for an entire childhood.
Now, it's just, "Do you want $100 worth of extra stuff crammed inside? Nope, well, press this pedal and shove some fluff in the animal's tuchus."