Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Shopping alone

The Engineer's parents are in town, and The Engineer was home from work yesterday. So I got in my car and went shopping...alone. I went to three different stores. Let's compare this shopping trip to the typical three-store trip, taken with an infant and toddler in tow.

Typical: 4 times into the car + 4 times out of the car * 2 kids=16 times that I buckle or unbuckle carseat straps.
Today: I get in the car and out of the car eight times, easily, and it only takes a few seconds each time.

Typical: I carry a diaper bag, toys, and sippy cup, and go back into the house 14 times to get the rest of the gear I forgot.
Today: I bear no resemblance to a pack mule.

Typical: Chickie calls from the back seat, "Can we listen to Philadelphia Chickens, please?" If I have the nerve to turn it off and Zoodle is tired, he protests.
Today: The only talking I hear is coming from my favorite talk radio station.

Typical: Zoodle is strapped to my back in my favorite baby carrier, and Chickie (the most orally-fixated kid in the world) is in the shopping cart sneaking packages out of the basket so she can chew on them.
Today: When I need a shopping cart, I push it around easily. When I don't need a shopping cart I grab one anyway, out of habit.

Typical: Not wanting to bother with two small children in a fitting room, I buy clothing without trying it on, or by hastily putting it over my clothes while I try to find a reflective surface in the middle of the store.
Today: I try on clothes in peace, thereby avoiding purchasing a shirt that looks far better on the hanger than it does on me.

Typical: Stress.
Today: Heaven.

Later we were driving to dinner, with the kids in the car. We passed some cows, and I pointed them out to Chickie.

"Look, Chickie! Those are cows! And baby cows!"

Chickie, in her "expert voice," informed me, "Actually, those aren't cows. Actually, those are baby elephants."

Well, you learn something new every day. I guess having kids in tow isn't so bad after all.


Special K said...

Love it. So hilarious about the elephant. I love shopping alone. It's like vacation!

Lyndsay said...

Shopping alone? What is this phenomenon of which you speak?

beckiwithani said...

I am sooooo jealous. Molly and I are headed out to KMart and Babies R Us today (very exciting!). Daddy is at work -- he doesn't get the day after Thanksgiving off, so he decided to swap an inconvenient Tuesday holiday for a four-day weekend. We're taking the T (Boston subway), too. Fun, fun!

BTW, Molly's favorite jokes right now are calling things by their wrong name. She'll call a mouse (in her Babybug magazine) a dog. Or she'll call a block a book. "Mamma, read the book!" and I'll say, "is this a BOOK?" and she'll say, "NO!" and laugh hysterically.

I think a lot of toddler jokes are funnier than adult jokes, but maybe just because their delivery is so convincing!

Jenners said...

You nailed it...the peace and happiness that comes from simply being alone while shopping! I'm not even a shopper but a trip to the grocery store or anywhere by myself is pure heaven! Thanks! I very much enjoyed this!

Eric and Carol: said...

I totally agree, shopping by oneself is heavenly. However, you know that nagging feeling like you are missing something or have forgotten something important? It's almost as though when you are absent from your children (and ten pounds lighter from lack of gear) you still feel a bit out of sorts!

foreverfoldinglaundry said...

You are right - there's nothing better than shopping alone!! Even grocery shopping can be blissful. Going down every aisle...not having anyone beg you for fruit snacks. Such a nice luxury!

Becky said...

I love solo shopping trips. It really is like a mini-vacation. And I can actually get everything on my list - normally, I make it halfway through the list before I get too frustrated, and then systematically decide, "OK, we can live without eggs for another few days, I don't really need deodorant that badly..." and high-tail it out of there.

Heather said...

The thing that kills me when I'm out without Asher, is that I will still set the rearview mirror so I can see his chair and I will check it compulsively trying to figure out what's missing from the picture.

ElleBee said...

Oh my, you lucky duck! Today I had both boys home so we got their Christmas pictures taken, stopped by Lowe's to pick something up for Daddy, JoAnn's to get something for Christmas Crafts, Costco for a doggie bed for P3, oh, and McD's for breakfast (somewhere in there). Then I was ready to collapse!

Sandra said...

Beth - Thanks for the reminder to enjoy being able to shop alone. When we brought newborn DD home from the hospital and Gunny was 2, I thought,"I will NEVER be able to take both of them somewhere by myself!" Of course, I did, but you have perfectly described what it was like.

So, thanks for the reminder how lucky I am now that I can come and go as I please, sans diaper bags and sippy cups!

Trish said...

Hi, Beth, I just discovered you today and what fun. I love your style and the truth you tell. I'm a grandmother now, but I remember those days. Once I took three little boys out of the grocery store, sat them on a wall and said, "Okay,this is the way we'll shop. Each of you gets ONE treat and the rest is from Mommy's list. They agreed. But the oldest did persuade the youngest what to choose for his treat. I'll be back soon.

Jenn said...

Hey! Thanks for checking out my blog as well! I love the one minute writer blog and can't wait to start using the prompts as I have committed to the daily blog project.. how crazy am I?!?

Dinner was fabulous! We are using the rest of the bread to go with the stew tonight.. don't you just love cooking in the fall??? mmmm soups and roasts are my favorite!

Becca said...

I know what you mean! I only had Kate with me today and it was SO easy compared to having 2 in tow.
Everything you wrote hit home! I hope you had a great time!!

C. Beth said...

Special K--Yeah, a quiet vacation!


Becki--Toddler jokes are great!! Sounds like a busy day today; hope it went smoothly.

Jenners-Thank you so much for coming to visit my blog! Hope to see you again. :)

Eric & Carol--Yes, a little out of sorts--I definitely agree. I missed the little munchkins!

Foreverfoldinglaundry--Yes, it is a mommy luxury!

Becky--Ha ha!

Heather--Yeah, it's totally weird to look back there and see those empty seats!

Ellebee--Oh, wow, that is an EXHAUSTING day!

Sandra--Yaaay, you're home!!! I missed you!

Trish--Welcome!! I'm so glad you came and visited. Very funny about the oldest knowing how to manipulate the youngest--I can see my little girl doing that in the future!

Jenn--Yeah, I even do soup in the summer, so it's nice when it's actually seasonally appropriate! :)

Becca--Yeah, isn't it funny how one becomes so much "easier" when you get used to 2?

terabithian said...

when I first saw 'Zoodle' I wondered whether you'd heard Boynton's nonsense lullaby and I guess this answers my question! (We drive around with Philadelphia Chickens on in the car too. It beats a lot of other cheesy kids' music.) Dream. Of. Shopping. With. No. Kids.

sweetdia nothing more nothing less said...

really i have a question...sorry to bug you. but your blog is so popular..i want mine to be too. how do you do it? :(

Posh Post Reviews said...

hi beth! you have a really nice blog. i will follow this too. take care mommy! :-)

and you had a funny field trip . :D

Flowersbythewayside said...

congrats on your very beautiful blog beth. btw, if you need a dose of inspiration, here is my other blog.:-D

Marriage Markers said...

hihihi kids are really funny. sometimes, i even already get funny moments with the baby in my womb. :-) can't wait for baby to come out.