When the munchkins were born, I refused to take them to the grocery store because I couldn’t stand it when strangers would try to touch my kids. (I still don’t like for strangers to touch me or my kids, but that might be a different set of issues. I just like a wide swath of personal space.) As they got a few weeks and months worth of age on their little bodies, I figured out that it was nice little break to go shopping by myself. Fathers need time alone with their kids for bonding. Mothers do not need to supervise that bonding.
So there I was, blissfully going grocery shopping without my kids. I finally started taking them grocery shopping with me when they were about 2 or 2 1/2 years old because they would beg and I was getting plenty of other time away from them. But there were two of them. I put my little munchkins in the shopping cart and went on my happy little way. We couldn’t buy much, but I could fit enough food in the cart for dinner that night and possibly the next.
Our little system worked for a very long time. They would get in the cart, we’d go over to the deli and get them a chicken strip, and I could shop. Then one fateful day, Ed went shopping with us. The boys were 5 years old. Ed decided that the boys were big enough to walk beside the cart. I’ve never gotten them back into the cart since that day.
So here is my warning to anyone with babies who might be reading this: keep your babies in the shopping cart as long as you can! If your husband/boyfriend/significant other suggests that you let the kids walk, tell him or her how crazy they are and insist that your munchkin ride in the cart!
Once my munchkins were out of the cart, they started trying to take over the steering of the cart. Have you tried to steer a shopping cart with a munchkin in the way? It’s hard! Eventually, they try to take over pushing the cart all together.
It’s a little embarrassing when you kid runs the cart into a stranger.