Thursday, November 4, 2010

On Shopping With Young Children...

Is there anything more awesome than shopping with young children?

We are FINALLY getting our family photos done and wanted to get some clothes for the shoot. While I don't want all of us in matching navy polos and pleated khaki's I would prefer that Bubbalu wear something other than a peanut butter smeared t-shirt and ripped jeans.

Oh yes, shopping with young children.

My hint? Bring CANDY and TOYS.

New toys in shiny plastic wrap that they are only allowed to hold and drool over until they have behaved sufficiently to earn the right to lay their grubby paws on an unpackaged toy.

Cereal bar? Nope, not good enough. Trail mix? Nada. Cut up pieces of fruit and a shot of wheat grass? Nice try.

You need CANDY.

Candy that ALSO has shiny plastic wrap on it that they are only allowed to hold and drool over until they have behaved sufficiently to earn the right to shove it into their mouth and swallow without chewing.

You just need the earplugs to silence the "Can I open it now? CanIcanIcanIcanIcanIcanI? Moooooooooom, can I open it NOW?" that is sure to ensue.

I would also suggest not bringing the noise cancelling earplugs because when your son sets off the store wide fire alarm you'll want to hear it and intervene appropriately before they ban you from shopping at their store permanently.

Hypothetically speaking, of course.

Not that this has ever happened to me before.

Or yesterday at 2:44 pm at Old Navy. But whatever.

My biggest mistake was not bringing a restraining device. I should have just brought my single stroller along but completely forgot. ( I decided to forgo the strait jacket because I figured it wasn't politically correct. Plus they don't make them in his size. Ain't that a shame? )

Strapping him into the 47 point harness in the single Bob stroller would have been beneficial being that he tipped over a rack of clothes, ran down a sales associate in Macy's, tried to climb the huge employee-only restocking ladder, peeked at other customers under the dressing room dividers and got lost, well, about 47 times.

Also, that little poo sweet boy WILL NOT ANSWER ME when I call for him. At one point all I could see was tufts of hair sticking up in the middle of a clearance rack in the next clothing section.

Good times were had by all (Insert massive eye roll). OY.

Any other hints and tips for shopping with young children? I need all the advice I can get...


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  1. Are you serious?!!! He really set off the fire alarm? I hate it when my kids draw attention to me just by talking loudly to other people or crying, but setting off the fire alarm!! Oh my! I totally know about forgetting the stroller...I hate it when I do that. I give you credit for even attempting to clothes shop. At least did you find clothes for your photo shoot??? Please tell me you did...then it was somewhat worth going out and dealing with all of that. Your boy is a hoot!! I always say it's a good thing I love my kids... :)

  2. My best piece of advice is that I dress my kids as cute as possible for shopping trips in matching or coordinating outfits even. Because sales people will usually smile and chuckle at CUTE naughty children, but they do not chuckle at grubby mismatched dirty faced children with tangled hair. And I also bring candy- but only water to drink because if I bring juice they down it in 2 seconds and then need to pee 50 times while we're in the store. And I really like to shop at target and put my older two in the 5 point harness carts and then the baby stays in her carrier in the cart... or in a sling. Then at least no can run away.

  3. Advice for shopping with children? Just don't...unless you have the husband and a leash. And DON'T bring candy...because at least in our case, the hyper, what-did-I-do-to-him, sugar-high is SURE to which I immediately regret my decision. Get a babysitter so you can actually ENJOY yourself or do it online! I know a GREAT place where you can even shop for a CAUSE {shameless plug} - check it out:
    OOORRRR...and HERE'S an down and visit your sister for a change and we'll do it together!!! That way one can handle the out-of-control screamers while the other one shops and then TRADE! =D

  4. Sooooo glad to know it's not just my little boy who thinks it's fun to hide as soon as I take my eyes off of him and refuse to answer me when I call his name.
    Couple weeks back I was at the grocery store, next in line looked down and he was gone. COMPLETELY out of sight. The guy behind me as well as the cashier didn't see him disappear either. Both started looking as soon as I said, "that was fast! Where did he go?" Of course he refused to answer when called. He was around the end display looking at Tinkerbell stuff. Just outta sight. AWESOME.

  5. Oye. Shopping with children. My favorite pasttime! :)

    My 2nd child is the master at wandering off, hiding, and NOT answering. You know what I tell them (and remind constantly if they still don't listen)?

    The truth. The very thought that scares me to death.

    That there are bad people out there that could grab them and take them away from me and I love them so much that I would be so sad. In a nutshell. :) Not sure if Bub is old enough to understand (or care), but *sometimes* it works for me. ;-)

    Other advice...maybe a promise for McD's for lunch if child is sufficiently 'good'?

    All that aside, most often what happens is that I drag hubby with me, after he's had a full day of work.:) Go to B'ham alone in the evening? Nah. I'd rather have the hair-pulling out-crabby-family bonding time!! :)

  6. oooh I understand this. No fire alarm yet though. I have a daughter that will scream bloody murder through an entire store if being strapped into anything. She typically lasts about 5 mins in a cart before making a suicide jump out the side. My only advice is go first thing in the morning (I have gone to target as early as 8am). There is very few people there at that time!

  7. What's really fun is when your teenage daughter sets of the alarm on the jewelry display at Costco by standing too close to it and the security guys show up at the same time as your husband who, already exasperated from shopping with four kids, told you to just stand there and wait quietly for a second.

  8. I would suggest one of those adorable bear backpack/leash thingies (assuming he can't wiggle out of it, or unbuckle it) and if need be add some extra straps. Then, he can't go anywhere and he can be your pack mule...err...little helper and carry the drinks/snacks/wallet/what have you so that you can have free hands (well, a free hand, because one hand will be desperately clinging to the leash/strap). BTW, they might not make straight jackets in his size...but you're a sewing crafty mama :) Just tell them he was Houdini for trick-or-treating and he can't get enough of his costume! Ha!


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