How to Shop with a Child If You Really Must
By Dana Loesch of Mamalogues
1. Define Your ETA
Use military precision in mapping the perfect time to hit the supermarket or mall when you and your child(ren) aren’t cranky or hungry.
2. State Your Expectations
Clearly state the behavior you expect from your child(ren) and the consequences of misbehavior BEFORE you arrive at the store. Prompt them again when you pull into the parking lot. Remind yourself that fear is healthy. Fear is our friend!
3. Distractions and Bribes.
Pack ample amounts of NMMS (Non-Messy Mobile Snacks) like Teddy Grahams, M&Ms, Cheez-Its, etc. for use whenever horns start sprouting from the crown of your child’s head. Handheld games are ingenious distractions and in cases of emergency, allow them to use your phone to call grandma while you shop. Grandma’s lovable jabbering will buy you at least 10 minutes.
Turn shopping into a game and your children into tiny little personal shoppers. Turn the trip into a treasure hunt. Stump them by asking them to find the most expensive item of clothing on the rack. Dazzle them with trivia like: “Did you know that the silk in this shirt came out of a moth’s head? Gross, huh?”
If all else fails and the tantrums cannot be held at bay by bribery or threats, ditch the mission and return to headquarters. When your kids ask why they’ve run out of snacks, guilt remind them that you had to cut your trip short.