Topped up for Fourth of July at my favorite binge shopping place

A trip to TJ Maxx for a one-stop shopping spree for everything Fourth of July

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As I loaded up for Independence Day festivities at my secret place, before I noticed two hours had passed. I wondered how the time had gotten away from me, as it always does when I go there; and more broadly, I wondered how my TJ Maxx compulsion had started.

It began innocently, many years ago.  I wandered into TJ Maxx.  I wondered, “What is this odd place; a sort of no-frills mini department store?” I discovered, it is just that.  Officially, TJ Maxx is considered a department store, but sans the helpful sales associates to bring you different sizes in the dressing room. I have come to peace with my TJ Maxx habit, because if you are going to have a shopping problem, or more positively referred to as retail therapy, at least TJ’s is affordable.

I have found some great deals, like 50 percent-off prices on designer clothes that are currently in other stores.  How do they do it?  Well, for starters, its doubtful you’ll find too many of the same thing at TJ’s, such as a rack of the same white blouse in six sizes. They get the leftovers, but remember, last does not mean least, and beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and one man’s trash…you get the point.  There’s great stuff there, but you do have to really look.

Much of the merchandize is one-offs, end-of-season or last season or slow sellers at other stores. Rarely do I see an irregular item, though if so, those items are marked as such and usually deeply discounted. There’s also an awesome clearance section in each department, where you can find a set of three dishes or an item out of a box or in a banged-up box for a fraction of the regular retail price.

So, for the Forth, here’s a sampling of the great stuff I found, all for under $100.  Talk about a celebration.

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A cooler that will make you feel like a star when you stroll into a party, of course more so if it is filled with adult beverages

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Can ever have enough of these decorative glass sets, and they make great hostess gifts

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Cute overload. Get them to wear these while they are young , before they want piercings

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Not sure if I will ever use these cupcake cases and toppers, but I knew if I didn’t grab them, they would be gone

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Even Fido can get into the spirit with this patriotic chew toy

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