Thursday, November 29, 2012

Making It Work!

 From sitting around at ballet classes & other child-centered events through out the week, I think that 1 of the biggest challenges I hear mommies talking about (aside from potty training) is trying to shop with the kids. Personally, with the exception of the seldom "off" day, I really do not think shopping with your kids has to be that bad. In fact, I just went on a grocery shopping adventure today with all my ladies by myself & we had a great time! Now, before I go on let me explain why it was able to be great, I worked my way up to it. A body builder does not start being able to automatically lift 800 lbs. That would be crazy! He starts off at the smaller weights & slowly works his way up to more challenging amounts. 4 kids is a lot, I definitely admit it, but as you start to get better at juggling just 1 kid at first, then 2, then 3, & now 4 it is less challenging because you worked your way up to it. So, whether you have just 1 kid or are 4 kids & counting like myself, I would like to offer a few tips that have helped me "get it down to a science" if you will.
First off, I believe the way your shopping trip is going to turn out ultimately starts with you & your attitude. If you decide to walk into it with a negative or intimidated attitude, then that is exactly the kind of experience you are going to have.You set the mood for the trip, whether you believe it or not. If you are choosing to be grumpy & annoyed, your kiddos are going to follow suit. If you are overwhelmed & stressed out, then they are going to act the same way. You have to make sure that before even starting to get yourself or the kids ready to go out that you do yourself the HUGE favor of getting your mind right! Know that you can do it, you can have a great time while also accomplishing things, & you do have the patience for it!
Once you have gotten your mind right, prepare! Pack the diaper bag or your kids backpack with any of the main essentials you could possibly need. Snacks are always nice, bibs, back up clothes or underwear, wipes, bottle, diapers, sanitizing wipes, & whatever else you think you might need. If you are grocery shopping, a list is so important. Kids can often times distract us a lil' bit, they are so darn cute & always saying the craziest things, so lists will help you get back on track. It is also a great idea to involve your kids in the process. Have them write their own lists so they feel like they are helping while at the store. Having kids go potty before you leave is vital! They may say they do not have to go, but trying never hurt anyone. I have 3 kids out of diapers, so I know that having to take 3 potty breaks while trying to shop would just be pure craziness. I also keep my lil' red IKEA potty in the car so if we are going to multiple stores they can try before going into each 1 if need be.
Once you have gone through the preparation process & all the kids are dressed & ready to go out the door, make sure you have everything. Is the stroller in the car? Do you have the Bjorn? All bags? Phone? Keys? Wallet? The breast pump if need be? Is everything turned off? Having to turn back around after you have loaded everyone into the car & you are half way to your location sucks (I have been there & done that plenty of times over!).
After you have arrived at your location, before doing anything, make sure you stop to talk to your kids & remind them of your expectations & safety rules while they are in the store. Make sure they repeat you & respond back so that you know they are listening & they can be no excuses for poor behavior. This is also a good thing to do before going to some one's house or going out to eat. Never just assume they know.
Next, its kind of trial & error to see what works best for you in different situations. Maneuvering through anywhere with 4 kids can be a lot. Do you feel like you can safely keep an eye on everyone? Are you able to get through the store quicker then a snails pace? I remember one time I tried taking all my girls to Jcpenny. I had to find one shirt for an event just really quick. I busted out with my double stroller (Addie and Aussie were in it) & I had the other 2 walking beside me holding my pockets. I will tell you right now, I have never had a more stressful experience in a store. The aisles were so tight that I could barely maneuver that big old thing without knocking something over. The kids were great, but 15 minutes in I was SO done. The double stroller at the mall? Works great! The double stroller through Jcpenny? Not so much. I have def come to love the Bjorn carrier for trips to the grocery store. My lil' teether loves it too! The 2 big girls walk & help grab things off the shelf & Aussie usually sits in the front seat of the cart. It works for me!
All in all, you just have to go for it! Not every adventure is going to turn out perfect, but I can promise you that the more you try the better you will get at it! Don't let yourself be intimidated.
-M&M Momma
P.S. Going on huge adventures with your younger ones that coincide with nap time should be avoided if possible. :)

For letter "H" day we wore
hats to the grocery store!

Can you tell they loved it!


Helping to put groceries away, bless her heart.

Enjoying movie night with
"Super Daddy"

Treat for the night, Rice Krispy snowmen!

Tired out.
She fell asleep with a dolly in her belly-lol
Pin It

No comments:

Post a Comment