April 1, 2020

Outings Part 1: Trauma at the Supermarket

Many people complain about how hard it is to get out of the house with their kids. You need to get everything you could possibly need in the diaper bag, you’ve gotten everyone dressed, diapers changed, and in the car. But what about once you’ve gotten out of the house? Here is my recollection of my first “outing” with both kids:

The first two months of the baby’s life went by in a blur, as they always do. I pretty much avoided going anywhere alone with both kids until one day I decided I should be brave and venture out to the Ralphs down the street with both of them. Couldn’t be too hard, right? Wrong! My girlfriend Emily who I ran into at the market can attest to what went down, but it went something like this: The baby (~ 2 months) was in a stroller and R (2 yrs, 5 mo.) was walking free. BIG MISTAKE! I should have taken my husband’s advice and put the baby in the carseat in the shopping cart and the toddler sitting in the cart seat. Then you have your hands free and you're not running after your wild and curious toddler who now has the opportunity to run around the store laughing maniacally while you chase her down and abandon your stroller with the baby in it while screaming “stop”! “enough”! “get back here, you &&^%*!” while she is pulling food off the shelves and screaming about cookies and whatnot. Yes, this happened. After three tantrums, including one memorable one in the middle of the ice cream aisle, R decided she had to pee. So we head to the back of the store, through the warehouse, find the bathroom and cram ourselves into a stall, stroller and all. Of course, after all that, she really doesn’t have to go.

It's not all doom and gloom, though. This outing got easier as time went on. First, put both kids in the shopping cart. Second, tell your older child ahead of time what the shopping list is so she can stay focused and “help.” Third, make sure everyone is fed and has used the bathroom before leaving the house. (Duh!). And fourth, Costco outings may be the easiest because both kids can sit in the shopping cart. With enough snacks, this outing can actually be fun!