Wednesday, July 11, 2012

in case I ever forget

I'm writing this entry for myself.  Should I think this is ever a good idea to repeat, I can just come back here and read this.

Usually Tyler or my sister does the grocery shopping for us.  Tyler does it on his way home from work or my sister does it when she does her shopping.  It's a pretty neat arrangement, right?  I like it.

Lately I've been a loser at cooking (babies screaming the whole time I'm cooking isn't my idea of fun!).  But I want to get back to eating homemade meals, at least most of the time.  So, I put together a menu and shopping list.  Then I needed the food asap since I wanted to start making dinner that night.

Speaking of my list, I used an online recipe site to create my weekly menu, which then created a shopping list for me.  Then I emailed that list to myself and smashed it with a hammer!  Sorry, I got confused with "The Emperor's New Groove".  So, the shopping list was emailed to me.  It was pretty neat too because in the email, next to each item, was a check box that I could tap and it would mark off the item.  Great for shopping, eh?

I chatted with my sister, and being the awesome sister that she is, was more than willing to go to Costco for me that same day (her daughter is a teenager now, so she has nothing better to do than go grocery shopping for me, right?!!  Not right.  She has plenty of other things she could have done with her time!  So, thanks sister dear!).  There was still the other half of the list that I needed to get groceries for from a different store...and I  decided I would take all five kids to the grocery store and get the things myself.  It shouldn't be too hard, right?

Stop making that face.

So, I plan out the shopping trip in my mind.  What are all the possible scenarios?  Okay, scratch that.  There's too many possible scenarios.  Let's just go and wing it.  There were some requirements:

  1. Don't lose any of the children.
  2. Try to avoid germs (it's due to germs that we don't usually take the kids shopping).

Armed with my handy list, and my diaper bag, we get in the van, and time for pep talk:  "This is going to be fun, kids!  We're going to go shopping!"  We talk about germs and how awesome it is that the kids are going to get to help me shop.  Bla bla blaaaa.

Then I had to run back in to the house because I forgot Rhys' stuffed animal cat that goes with her everywhere, including riding in the car.  I should have gone back in and stayed in (having the children follow me), but I didn't.

As we're driving, I realize it's nearing lunch time.  Do I want to take starving children in to the grocery store and try to finish really quick?  Um, no.  We get food.  Park in the store parking lot by the cart return.  We eat food.  I change a poopy diaper.  Nurse the baby.  By this point, more time has passed by than I had anticipated, and I wondered if we were getting too close to nap times...

I always park by the cart return so I can grab a cart before we go in.  But this time, the cart boy was out, getting carts ready to take back in the store.  I jumped out and ran over and asked the boy if I could have one.  He looked at me strangely without actually looking at me, then muttered something and walked away.  (I think there's a reason he's a cart boy.)  I told him thanks and took a cart.  I should have immediately returned it and grabbed another cart because as I was pushing it back over to the van, I noticed the alignment was really off.

Due to germ issues, I couldn't put any kids in the back of the shopping cart (too many possible germs from previous kids sitting back there).  I had a cart cover for the front seat of the cart.  So, in the end, I put Ella on me in a baby carrier, Rhys in the front of the cart, using a cart cover.  Then ended up sticking Violet in there with her.  Then TS & Emma flanked me on either side of the cart.  We were now ready to walk in.

I don't know why exactly, but I always get the giggles when I go places with all five kids.  I think it's because the reality of what I am doing is beginning to really settle in, and you might be surprised at how many people think five kids is crazy.  Plus, the kids look really close in age, so they will often stare.  I feel similar to a circus act (anyone else remember the day when five kids wasn't considered a big family?  hehe).  If we didn't have to be so careful of germs while shopping, it would be considerably easier.

This is a one-seater cart, but Vi & Rhys wanted to share the seat, so here they are:

To summarize the actual shopping trip, it went something like this:

"Okay guys, we need (insert item).  Can you see it anywhere?"

They find it.

They give it to Violet or Rhys to put in the cart.

Rhys screams and fights whenever the item is not given to her.

Rhys also randomly grabs things off shelves and put it in the cart.

I keep grabbing things back out of the cart and putting them away.

I keep barely missing crashing into things because the alignment of the cart is off.

The kids ask to have nearly everything they see.

I tell them no, we don't have that in the budget.

They act neglected and depressed until they get excited when they see something new and want that.

I tell them no, we can't buy that right now.

They act neglected and depressed until they get excited when they see something new and want that.

People stop to tell me how pretty the kids are.

They ask if I have twins (I think Rhys and Vi looked like twins to them since they are similar heights while sitting)

Rhys keeps putting things in the cart.

I keep taking them back out.

I try to stay away from the shelves so she can't reach, but the cart is nearly impossible to maneuver, and I keep barely missing crashing it.

I can hardly make the cart turn corners.

My shopping list was being glitchy. I had marked off the several items I bought, but as I would randomly turn my phone from vertical to horizontal (like from going to hold it to read it to holding it in my hand while pushing the cart), it would erase everything I had marked off, showing it as though I hadn't marked it off.  Grrr...and it did it several times.

I try to keep the kids occupied and happy by giving them items to find and put in the cart.

Suddenly Rhys is screaming at everyone.

I knew it was time to stop shopping because it was all going to go downhill from here!

We had a few things on the list we couldn't get.

The three older kids start getting really whiny (Rhys screaming wasn't fun for anyone.)

The baby is fussing.

Everyone had the job of unloading the cart, which helped make them happier.

Had I paid more attention, I would have noticed that Rhys managed to toss a few things in the cart that I had missed and ended up buying.

I picked a lane where the woman in front of me, who was incredibly kind and sweet, was taking a really long time.  It seemed like she had a lot of problems with almost every item.

I wasn't going to pack back up and switch to a new lane!

Rhys was melting down.

Finally it was our turn.

Rhys had finally completely melted.

As she was screaming, the checkout lady looked at me sympathetically and said, "Bless your heart.  I only have one and that's almost too much for me."  I tried to not burst out laughing, not because I was glad Rhys was crying - just that the WHOLE experience, especially at the end, was completely insane.

Here we are getting unloaded at the van:

And, here she is at one of the first stop lights on the way home.

And, this was the text I sent to Tyler right before I drove away (we are a little slow at responding to texts):

(my texts are in blue.  tyler's are in white)

I actually find this text really sweet (and amusing) because before I went shopping, Tyler didn't think it was going to be a very good idea to try to take all five kids.  I really wanted to get the shopping done for dinner that evening, so I went ahead and did it.  And, he didn't even do an "I told you so".  :-)  I think he was probably hoping the shopping would work out so I could do it more easily!  Plus, he's a really sweet guy, and I LOVE HIM!  :-)

Anyway, so that's my story.  Lesson learned.  


  1. Now I see why you let Siouxsie pick stuff up for you on her trips. She loves it, so don't worry about passing that task our way!

    1. Thanks, Rob! I'll be sure to utilize her shopping skills:-)

  2. Seriously you can not make this stuff up! I think you should write a book. I so enjoy reading about your kiddos & the adventures. The grocery store one had me laughing (not at, but with you ;-)!) over & over. By the way how did dinner turn out or after that were you just too exhausted to even think about cooking?!?

    1. haha! Thanks, Candice! Glad you found it entertaining:-) And, yes! If I remember correctly, I did end up cooking.

  3. My youngest brother has 7... makes for some entertaining stories!

    1. I bet! I come from a family of nine siblings, and I have no doubt we made for crazy shopping trips for my mom. I remember we followed her around like she was a mother duck, all in a line behind her. We pushed the carts and often crashed into her too. haha.

  4. Have so been there! You crack me up though!