The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Unhappy Hour Grocery Shopping with kids

Bewitching hour at the grocery store.

I dare to venture into Safeway between four-thirty and eight at night, or whenever my kids start to melt down in the evening.

Over the din of crying babies and the glare of fluorescent lighting a chemical imbalance occurs in children. I’ve seen kids go from complacent and mute to wild-eyed Mr. Hydes determined to torment their parents. Tired, testy parents are forced to brush past other tired and testy shoppers in single-lane aisles.

Oh, the horror.

In my pre-kid life I remember moving my shopping cart around a father who was kneeling before a young child splayed across the dirty laminate floor. ‘Oh puleeze. Just pick him up and leave,’ crossed my mind. Now I imagine the no-food-at-home/no-choice-but-to-endure scenario that may have forecasted that dad’s ill-timed venture.

The art of distraction only works to a point, too.

“Here, help Mommy count out six apples,” I’ve commanded my kids. We’ve counted bananas, examined oranges, plucked lettuce, learned about kiwi. But fatigue inevitably overpowers engagement, and in a flash the kids are battling.

When it’s gotten ugly I’ve left carts full of groceries in the store and dragged the kids back to the empty car with lectures about shopping etiquette. But I feel like I'm being penalized. While the kids listen behind hooded eyes I’m lamenting the missing milk or other staples back at home.

Come morning, though, sometimes milk-less Raisin Bran leaves a better taste than the memory of the dairy aisle from the night before.

by Maija Threlkeld

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