Do you find grocery shopping with your kids extremely challenging? Do you come home and realize you forgot the majority of the food on your list? If so, then keep reading. I hope that these tips will help you figure out how to make grocery shopping with the kids a little easier.
Grocery shopping is one household chore that I really do enjoy. I love meal planning and writing out an organized list that makes going to the store easy and fun. But you know what’s not easy? Taking all of my small children to the store. Not only do I get weird looks and comments about having my hands full but the tantrums and meltdowns distract me from my plan.
Over the years, I’ve found a few ways to make grocery shopping a little more enjoyable.
Make it a date night
This is probably my favorite way to grocery shop. My husband and I take the baby (5 months) and leave our other three children with their Mimi. This gives us time to spend time together while doing something that needs to be done. We are able to laugh and goof around more which is very much needed in our marriage.
Divide and conquer
I know this isn’t an option for everyone but this is how our family does most Dr. appointments and other outings that involve waiting and entertaining little ones. I always take the baby and either one of the girls or both of them. Owen loves to stay home and have special time with his daddy but I will eventually add him into the rotation. We keep track of whose turn it is to go with Mom so that their are no hurt feelings.
Bring snacks, stickers, books, etc
As long as my almost two year old has a snack, he is content. But he tends to freak out when the snack is gone and I always try to have something else that will distract him. With my girls, I give them a snack when we first get to the store and this keeps them busy for the first 30 minutes or so. Since my oldest is only 5, I let them both ride in the cart while they eat their snack and before the cart gets full.
This way, I know where they and that they are safe, and I am able to focus on getting my shopping done.
Here are some our favorites for keeping my two year old entertained:
Let them help
My older kids know what we usually buy so it’s fun for them to find our regular purchases and put it in the cart. One of my biggest struggles in grocery with kids is telling them no to pretty much everything that looks good to them. Candy, sugary cereals, chips, etc. When they are kept busy looking for things we usually buy, it distracts them for asking for other things.
Set realistic expectations and go over the rules
It’s crucial that we have a plan before taking my kids anywhere. I explain to them how I expect for them to behave and encourage them to do what’s right. If we had an incident the time before, we talk about it and how we are going to do better this time.
The Binxy Baby shopping cart hammock has totally changed how I grocery shop. As much as I love baby wearing, sometimes I want my own space. Or I want to be able to bend down and grab something without having to support the baby while balancing the product in my hand.
- When you use the hammock instead of a car seat, you have more room in the cart
- Shop with two or three children in the cart
- Holds up to 50lbs
- Small and compact
- Natural incline
- Two layers of fabric and safety straps
- No harmful substances
- Difficult to put onto bigger carts with one hand
While their are definitely more pros than cons, I want to share with you how I have solved one of the problems I’ve had with this product.
Since their is only one of me and four of them, I always struggle with bringing the baby into the store with my other children. So, what I do is park beside the carts (I’ve never had trouble finding one at my local Wal-Mart), I unbuckle my older children, then get the cart while the older kids are still in the car. I put the hammock on the cart, then put baby in the hammock, then get my older children. I also try to avoid shopping on rainy days with the baby since I don’t want to use a wet cart.
It’s kind of crazy, but it works for me. I almost always bring a ring sling with me when we use the hammock just in case Lydia gets fussy.