Remember the days before kids when going to the grocery was just one of those things you could fit into your day? Or maybe you didn’t go much because you didn’t have kids so you had the money and freedom to go out to eat every night! OR, you had no money and worked three jobs and ate lots and lots of Ramen noodles. Yep, I’ve been there and done that with all instances.
Now that I’m a Mother of three amazing, beautiful little angels who give me a reason to get up in the morning even when I just want to sleep in, going grocery shopping is miserable. Don’t get me wrong, when I have the chance to go ALONE it’s like a mini-vacation! I get to peruse Specials, try the samples, smile at other Moms in sympathy when their children are acting out. But going alone is a special and rare occasion. Let me just break down the latest trip which is pretty normal for me…
Let me start by saying I should’ve blocked out time to go before I picked up my oldest from school. But I was working from home and lost track of time…y’all understand that, right? So I wag my two littles into the car-the baby has had half a nap all day because she just wouldn’t sleep. Pick my daughter up from school and we head to the grocery. But first, let’s make a quick detour through the Starbucks drive-thru. Lord knows I need the caffeine and if I give the kids a snack it should help make this quick grocery trip a little more bearable because they won’t be hungry, right? Here’s my list of what I need for home made pizzas: sauce, pita or flatbread, mushrooms, pepperoni, shredded mozzarella, steak, and avocado. And we need more oatmeal and cereal for the house. Nine items, that’s all. Easy, peasy, right? WRONG.
We get inside and there’s one of the kid carts. Easy enough, my oldest was pushing a cart already. So my son got the kid cart. Then my oldest asks to look for one by the bathroom. “Do you need to use the bathroom?”
“Yes.” So my herd and I head that way. Lo and behold, a child is leaving and doesn’t need his kid cart. Yay! Now my kids are happy. But my daughter needs to use the bathroom. Since the baby is in the cart I’m pushing, we put a big cart and two kid carts into the family restroom (score for that being available!). And we wait. And wait. And wait. My oldest is pooping. Great. I ask my son “Do you need to potty?”
“Mommy is going potty, do you want to try?”
“No, I don’t need to potty.”
All hands get washed and out we go. We get to the produce aisle and I’ve already had to raise my voice 3 times for them not to run and to watch out for other people. I promise you, my children are well-behaved and great kids. But there’s something about the grocery that makes my oldest just act like a heathen that won’t listen! I grab an avocado. Oh and I need a tomato, so I grab one. My son tugs at me. I bend down so he can whisper in my ear….
“I have to potty.”
I’m pretty sure smoke came out of my ears. Grrrrrrr. So my herd goes back to the bathrooms so he can potty. Then back out to look for what we need. But I can’t just fly through aisles and find what I need, because I have three small kids with me. There is a constant “watch out”, “don’t touch that”, “Can we get this”, “Stop running!”, “Follow me, please”, “pay attention”, etc., etc.
Then because we have a cute little grocery with a machine that takes special currency from that store, each kid gets two Buddy Bucks from the cashier to put in the machine and see what they get. If you have kids you simply can’t not do this EVERY Time you go to the store with them. It’s pretty cute, they get so excited putting the money in and hitting the stop button to see what they get. But by the time you’re done shopping you just want to yell “hurry it up!!!”
Ten items. Should take no more than 15 minutes. It took an hour and a half. Of course, by the time we get home they are starving and want a snack and it’s a battle because of course you don’t get a snack I’m making dinner. My sweet kids turn into loud, obnoxious lunatics at the grocery and I literally have no idea why or where it comes from. Tell me I’m not the only one by sharing your stories. This hot mess needs to hear I’m not alone in this.