I ventured to the grocery with the kids in tow today. I had high hopes. And dreams. And ambitions. And a list.
The list is crucial. However, sticking to it is optional.
It was a necessary trip, we needed the basics and few things we just can't do without. Like coffee. Remember when I gave up caffeine? Well, I lost that fight.
As the kiddos grow and become more adventurous, I have started to appreciate my quiet nights when I go to the store after bedtime and wonder the aisles alone. It was easy when I could dish out goldfish or a pacifier, but now there are questions, wants, neeeeeeeds, the touching of all things glass, and incessant talking on a shopping trip.
We're like a traveling slumber party :).
They said my name 29 times in the car during the 11 minute drive. 29 times. I counted. Only a child can do that, it's a quality that is unique to their species.
As much as I love Target, I swear that red bulls eye sends a crazy surge through the kids. It's a conspiracy. The more rowdy they are, the more mindless shopping I will do.
Hence the problem of going in for 8 things and coming out with 30.
I like to think I know them really well, but there are some things about children that will always remain a mystery.
I'll never understand why they have to touch everything, open every freezer door, or why we have to talk (loudly) about tampons from the moment we pass the aisle till the moment we check out. The 8yr old, has SO MANY questions - that I can and will answer when we aren't in the company of the young stock guy who is filling the shelves.
And speaking of shelves, Lincoln is freakishly good at clearing them off from the front of the cart. He'd be unstoppable on the game show Supermarket Sweep. Remember that? Is it odd that I loved it when I was younger? Maybe a little?
Kinley carried a donkey pinata through the whole store. We weren't buying it, but she looked so stinkin' cute carrying it, so I didn't fight it.
Across the way I see a fellow mom lean down and say something through her teeth to a child that is dropping popcorn on the ground and then stepping on it, and I smile and nod. The mom nod, our secret "I understand" notion to each other.
I pass the arts and craft aisle as quickly as possible, as in it's just a red blur as you see my cart zoom by - because the kids looove that aisle. And as much as I would like to pretend that I am that mom who lets her kids pick out craft supplies so we can make happy-best mom ever-craft memories together, I don't. I try to, but it always ends up like this...
These days, I like to stick to activities where I don't have to hose them off in the backyard or mop the kitchen afterwards.
And alas, the cart is full, we are at the back of the store, and someone has to pee. Friends, this is when society takes me out of the running for Mom Of The Year. I bend down to my 3yr old and say,
"If you really don't have to go, and you're just wanting to check out the bathroom (because isn't that always the case??), I'm going to go off the deep end."
To which she replies, "Like the deep end at the pool?? Cool!!"
(sigh, someone please escort me to a room where I can scream freely for a few minutes.)
"Yes, baby, kind of like the pool." Only a child can remind you that your attitude could use a good laugh and some patience. I think God puts those innocent statements in there to remind us how little they are. Always grace, even when they are exhausting.
So I remind myself that He only asks me to do the next thing, and I take a deep breath and carry on with my sweet crew.
And then I quietly pray for some free time to go by myself next time :).