Monday, April 17, 2006

grocery challenge

there is no doubt that grocery shopping is a completely different ball game with children than it ever was before children.

pre-baby: grocery shopping for 2, for an entire week's worth of stuff, took maybe 30 minutes tops.
post-baby: no less than 90 minutes.
pre-baby: spend lots of time in the beer & wine aisles, choosing new brews and flavors.
post-baby: spend lots of time in the diaper and babyfood aisles, choosing superabsorbant and smashed sweet potatoes.
pre-baby: self check out!
post-baby: full service check out lane and carry out assistance

once blessed with a little bundle, grocery shopping struggles go far beyond choosing between store brand cheese or Kraft. and most moms will agree that there are certain stages in mommyhood when grocery shopping becomes a real challenge.

stage 1: the newborn. she sleeps in the carrier the entire time. the challenge: keeping the carrier shade adjusted to keep flourescent lights out of baby's face.

stage 2: 3-6 month old. baby may be awake at times, and might be hungry if mommy doesn't time it just right. the challenge: pushing the cart, holding a nursing baby on the boob, keeping yourself covered with a blanket tucked under your chin, singing "itsy bitsy spider," and getting the groceries you need, and not looking like a complete idiot while doing so.

stage 3: sitting up. baby sits in the cart now - whew, no more lugging around that heavy baby carrier! the challenge: finding a cart that is clean and has a working seatbelt, putting the Floppy Seat Cover in properly, and entertaining baby while shopping.

stage 4: the toddler. now the baby can walk. and that's all baby wants to do. forget the cart, forget the seatbelt, and forget the $40 Floppy Seat Cover. this is the stage we're in. the challenge: get groceries as fast as you can, while keeping baby in the cart- not necessarily in the seat part, but somewhere in the cart. keeping baby happy and entertained, avoiding aisles with junky snack foods and drinks, toys, kitchen appliances, balls or ball-shaped items like fruit, and grouchy non-parents. yikeys.