Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Adventures in Grocery Shopping

If you are looking for a blog full of how to's and wonderful recipes, this is probably not the one for you....but if you are looking for a blog that makes you feel better about yourself for doing routine tasks that should be easy -  you're in the right spot.

Last weekend was an extended one because the kids were out of school for Martin Luther King Day.

Side note - apparently the kids these days refer to it as MILK weekend. (I'm proud to say that it only took me thirty seconds to figure out what that meant). 

Anyway, the long weekend without any real plans was topped off by the fact that Jeff has officially entered his "busy time schedule" for the new deal he is working on.

Which meant he worked all weekend long.

On weekends and holidays, my kids tend to be homebodies - moaning and groaning about doing much of anything including fun stuff like going to the park or on a bike ride.

So, I did what any adventurous mom would do.

I loaded them all up and headed to the grocery store. And in a bold attempt at bribery, I promised the kids that they could each buy a new toy.

(With their own money).

We needed only the basics to survive the weekend so we could make a proper sandwich out of something other than carb-balance tortillas and cream cheese.

Three Hundred and Thirty Six Dollars later, I think I think it's safe to say that I am officially the world's worst grocery shopper.

Especially when I am hungry and trying to keep four kids happy.

After I meandered the grocery aisles letting the kids talk me into tons of stuff we didn't need, I found myself standing in the toy aisle examining every. last. Lego. box. that Walmart had in inventory.

The boys were deciding which ones they could afford - and also had the time to tackle over the weekend.

Hayden decided on one that was above a $9.99 sign, but since was an entire Lego city - and had over 40,000 pieces we both knew it was just in the wrong spot. Since Walmart has removed all of those price checker thingies (I know because we walked the entire store looking for one) we just decided to wing it.

That bad decision is how Hayden ended up with his first $70 Lego set and an outstanding $5 loan from Davis.

Finally - FINALLY - we were finished grocery shopping and toy shopping and made our way to the check out line.

And that's when for some reason....A REASON TOTALLY UNEXPLAINABLE....I decided to go through the self-checkout line.

With THREE HUNDRED AND THIRTY SIX DOLLARS worth of groceries and four kids and NO ROOM to put any of the bagged groceries.

Let's just say that the poor soul that has the brutal task of managing the 4 "self-checkout" lanes had to come over to my area no less than 17 times to clear an error

About 1/3 of the way through ringing out my own groceries...I think it was one of the times I was waiting for the cashier to come over and examine the "unknown item in the bagging area", I realized what a HUGE mistake the self-checkout line was.

I stopped. I took a deep breath. And I seriously considered voiding my transaction and starting over in a line with a cashier. At that point, it didn't even matter if the cashier took out his teeth. But then I thought better of it and kept on plugging away in an effort to accelerate The Self Check-out Fiasco.

Meanwhile, Davis was trying to help me by scanning items as well....and then putting them back in the basket. Not in a bag. (That probably accounts for thirty dollars or so of my over budget).

Behind me, Hayden was tending to Blake and Nathan.

The once-empty self check-out line quickly began to fill up with customers. Customers who were all looking at Me and My Hoodlums. I felt eyes peering at me from every direction.

At one point, Blake started to squeal and I turned around to see Hayden holding Blake's arms down.

So I stopped scanning (don't worry - Davis  scanned a few more items) and reprimanded Hayden for restraining Blake and making him squeal.

Then I got back to scanning.

That's when I heard "excuse me ma'am....excuse me ma'am....excuse me ma'am" from behind me.

I turned around right in time to see someone we'll call Mr. Mediator Man (another Walmart guest) raising his eyebrows and pointing squarely at Blake, who was whacking Nathan with a loaf of bread that very instant.

The man didn't say anything else. But his raised eyebrows said it all.

He expected me to apologize to Hayden and reprimand Blake before I rang out one more item.

So I stopped scanning again (don't worry - Davis scanned a few more items). I apologized to Hayden and said something in a very stern voice to Blake...if only to appease the long line of self-checkout customers that had suddenly turned into baby-sitters.

The moral of the story:
Don't self checkout with more than 3 items.
Don't bribe your kids with toys.
Don't buy something if you don't know the price of it.
Don't go to the grocery store hungry.
Don't go to the grocery store with four kids.
Just don't go to the grocery store.

***Just so no one feels sorry for my boys, 
we also went to the park, went to a play area, 
had three play dates and a sleep-over. 


Betty said...

This is so funny. That is for everyone except you! Every time I get behind someone at the store with 3-4 kids, I think of you and say a prayer for the person in front of me. You are amazing to even consider going with four kids. I refused to take Brad to the store with me after a few bad trips and he was just one kid! ugh. I took Miss Kellie all the time.

Mica said...


Sorry for the CAPS...Mike insists on using self checkout every time we go shopping...and then proceeds to huff and puff in frustration when the machine YELLS at us constantly. "Something unexpected is in the bagging area. Please remove..."

No, no, no! My sanity can't handle it.

anne said...

I raised 5 kids as a single parent, but never had the opportunity to experience the fun of going through self check-outs since they didn't exist yet. but, oh my how I can relate to everything else in your post and I'm still wiping away the tears of laughter. God Bless You and your family. My five are now all grown and I now have 11 Grandchildren. I watch my sons and daughters with their spouses deal with their young ones and listen to their battle stories, and Oh, how do I remember those days and the phrase "this to shall pass" frequently comes to mind as I say to them , "don't worry, it won't be like this forever, it eventually gets better !! right.. until they hit the teens and the real battle begins and once you survive that is when you get your "Badge of Honor"..and the fun of watching them go around and around with their youngins :) One of my sisters raised 4 kiddos, another sister raised 3 boys. The best days are family gatherings when us "old Ladies" sit back and enjoy observing all the kids and grands with our feelings of pride that "we made this" and we survived !! Have fun and Enjoy you little ones now, and know your day will come also..... eventually.... <3