Grocery shopping. Love it or hate it, there is not many options to avoid it. Unless you like eating takeout food your whole life, you are going to have to step into a grocery store at some point.
I have always loved going grocery shopping. The thrill of picking out new foods and all the possibilities just waiting to be put in your cart.
Yes, some days are harder than others. Some days you can’t stand how busy it is in the store. But generally, I enjoy it.
So how did that change once kids came on the scene? Well there were changes of course.
Grocery shopping became more like a strategic mission that you hoped would work.
When we had our first kid, my wife and I would both go. One with the cart and one with the stroller.
That worked for a bit until we were having trouble finishing a shop without a meltdown or bathroom emergency of some sort.
So we decided to start taking turns. One would go shopping and one would stay home. That worked well. So well in fact, we kept it going right through until kid two.
We would bring our oldest on occasion, but that was more out of schedules than anything.
But I would keep hearing that it’s good to take your kids places. It’s good to give them the experience. Because that is what makes them much better behaved later on. Makes sense.
I would also read, taking them to see where the food was bought, would get them interested in food and hopefully help the picky eaters (which we certainly have).
Now that we have a 4-year old and a 1-year old, the time has come that we pretty much take our oldest grocery shopping when possible.
He loves it. He helps. He is behaved.
It actually makes grocery shopping even more enjoyable than before.
First, there is someone to talk to and chit-chat with as you are shopping. But at the same time, nothing the conversation is not that deep. No life changing talks with your son at the grocery store. Topics are more likely to include the plot of that morning’s cartoon or what kind of Hot Wheels he wants from aisle five.
Oh yeah, that. We have fallen into the trap of buying a car every time he comes. He is good. He does not complain. For now, I don’t think it is a big deal.
We will have to curb this one soon however as it’s not a good thing to get into to give a toy every time we go somewhere.
So what are the other reasons to take the kids grocery shopping?
Well it gets them engaged with food. They can see the full cycle of where their dinner starts. It helps them learn what certain foods are called.
Our boy loves to go through the produce section asking and learning what everything is called. Now, he does not exactly eat a lot of fruit and veg, but at least he now knows what it is.
The time is split pretty evenly on sitting in the cart and walking around the store. Sure, he does vanish behind some displays from time to time but he is exploring and slowing building up some independence. Don’t worry, I am always tracking him.
The checkout is always fun. Harrison likes to help with the unloading of the cart. Placing it all nicely to be checked out.
He still won’t pay for me, but a guy can always try.
The final step of our grocery store trip seems to be the most fun for Harry. He has to sit in the cart with all the groceries. Sometimes you can barely see him in there. I have heard his mom does not do this, but when possible I don’t mind burying him in bags.
We hit the parking lot, unload into the car and hit the road. The trip does not take any longer than it would on my own and it is a lot more fun.
The question is now, how fun will it be to take two kids one day? Well, let’s just take it one step and a time.
For now, our younger son loves to help sort the groceries when I get home. And when I say sort, I mean, not sort.
Do you take your kids grocery shopping? How does it turn out?