Today, I had the ultimate mommy moment in the grocery store. Sean and I decided to go grocery shopping before dinner with all three girls because we needed to go grocery shopping as there was nothing to eat or cook in the house, and I love our store's prepared food section, it's delicious and relatively healthy. The girls get mac n cheese, the home made kind with actual cheese and big shell noodles, Sean gets a yummy deli sandwich, and I get the caprese pasta salad-- pasta, basil, a light oil and vinegar dressing, fresh chopped tomatoes, and fresh mozarella. We also get some fresh cut fruit and a piece of chocolate cake to eat (ok, that's not healthy, but it's good)
The plan was to get the groceries, along with dinner, and get home right at dinner time. I know many would say not a good idea to go grocery shopping with hungry children, but we usually go right before lunch with no problems.
On the way to the store, Samantha started in with "I'm hungry" whining, it continued, and worsened. I told her we were going to get dinner and I didn't bring a snack because it was too close to dinner. She continued, the whole way there, on the way out of the car, into the store.
Once at the store, we found a shopping cart with a car in the front. The big blue one I hate because it's gigantic, but we took it. Both girls can fit in the car together, although Samantha sometimes gets out and walks with Sean to grab things while I push the cart with Ella. (Penny is in the Bjorn being carried by one of us. Don't worry, we don't leave her in the car.)
As soon as we get in the store, the girls start fighting over who gets the steering wheel first. And I mean fighting--hitting, yelling, pushing, and that terrible screaming that little kids do when they're really angry.
I was already extremely irritated by the whining, so I went to the front and very firmly told them if they didn't stop fighting we were leaving the store with no food. Well, they didn't stop fighting, so I hauled their little butts out of that cart, kicking and screaming, and pulled them to the car. I strapped the little heathens into their carseats, closed the door, and stood outside in the windy parking lot, next to the car, so I wouldn't have to listen to the continued screaming. Luckily, our car is pretty sound proof when the doors are closed.
I have certainly heard advice before to just leave the store if the kids get unruly, but I never thought I would have to do it. Sure, sometimes they cry or run around more than I would like, but they're generally pretty well behaved when we're out. And, if I am doing anything that requires the twenty to thirty minutes of prep time at home to get all three kids into the car, I'm determined to accomplish whatever small errand needs to be accomplished. Today, I learned there really is a point where it's just not worth it. We'll go grocery shopping tomorrow, after Sam's at school and after Penny's doctor's appointment (she's 4 months already!).
Oh, while I was wrestling the kids, Sean took Penny to go get dinner, since we really didn't have anything to eat in the house.