Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Life Lessons Learned Grocery Shopping

I go grocery shopping twice a month when we get paid. Instead of smaller weekly sessions, I have one huge shopping trip. I get a lot done but I come home feeling crazy.

As my little ones get older, it actually gets harder to shop with them. Anyone else notice this? A crying baby can be contented with a binkie or a bottle. But 5 and 3 year olds seem to require a little bit more when shopping and riding in the car for 4 hours.

I usually start out each trip on edge, knowing I have about 2 hours before they are tired of shopping. As they get tired and cranky, I get frustrated because I just want to get it done and go home.

But the past year or so, I have been trying to change my attitude, because honestly, they're going to pretty much keep doing what they do, so it's up to me to make the experience better.

So this is what I have learned about grocery shopping with little kids that can pretty much be applied in all areas of parenting.

1. Getting upset doesn't change anything. In fact, it makes it worse. Staying calm, even when your toddler knocks down and end cap of toilet paper, is the best tactic.

2. Give them treats. Everybody likes treats. Having a routine fruit roll up every time you visit the grocery store makes them happy, keeps them busy for a little bit, and gives them a nice memory attached to the outing.

3. Say yes as often as you can. As a new parent, I thought it was my job to say no to a lot of things in order to keep from raising spoiled brats. But that is not the case. Saying yes to what you CAN say yes to gives your  children security. How? Because they don't start feeling like they have to look after themselves for the things they want. They can trust you to meet their needs and some of their wants, and when you do have to say no, they usually handle it better.  And I'm not talking about giving them every material thing they ask for, or every cookie they see. But if you find yourself saying no, more than you say yes, maybe rethink your strategy.

4. Feed them. Whether it's a 4 hour shopping trip, or just hanging at home, little kids will often not tell you when they're hungry. They will just get grumpier and grumpier. And if you're out and about and you really do have the time, GO IN to the restaurant. It gives everyone some time to recoup and relax before hitting the next 3 grocery stores. (I go to 4 different places to get the best prices on food. If you can do one stop shopping, then yay for you!)

5. Hit the bathroom before you start anything! Then your children don't remember the frustrated sigh of their mother as she wheels the cart around to head to the bathroom. NOT that I have ever done that. Ahem. Take care of it at the beginning and you will not be annoyed later.

6. Unless you are willing to buy toys every time you go to the store, do your best to avoid the toy aisle. Bigger kids understand, but a two year old?

7. Every time you get your children out of the car, hold them and give them a hug. Henry and Nora love it, I love it, and it gives me a little reminder before we head into the next store just how much I love my kids.

And who couldn't love them, messy after snack faces and all?

And remember these curtains?

You can order your very own if you come to our Basement Boutique this Saturday.
Saturday November 19th
10 AM-8 PM
Amber's Basement
28623 239th PL SE
Maple Valley, Wa

You can order full ruffled curtains or partial ruffled (also super cute!)in white, creme or a linen color. 

And did you enter the giveaway? What? You must! It's the possibility for a Christmas gift checked off your list. Don't live in Washington? That's ok, she'll send it to you!
Go! Now! Enter!


  1. Awesome, once again Amy!

  2. K. so now I am curious. What four stores do you shop at and for which items. Spill the beans and share your hard earned wisdom. I think another post is in order :)

  3. How did you know I needed to hear all of that? Not necessarily for the grocery store anymore, but for life in general. I have been doing the opposite lately of all the wonderful things you advise.

    Literally, and not surprisingly, your post is the answer to my prayers. Thank you.

  4. I agree, avoid the toy aisle! I have experienced that and all day my kid begging to him a toy, but I don't have extra budget.

  5. Sister Hinckley said that she always tried hard to never say "no" if she could possibly say "yes." She felt that that taught her children that she trusted them and they could be responsible. I bet they were really happy kids. I definitely need to say yes more often!

  6. Hi! I want to order these white curtains. Please tell me how; I'm in Arkanasas. - Jill 214.558-9535


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