I got a glimpse into my former life when I parked at the grocery store the other day. A young mother, with an infant in a baby carrier and a toddler, was trying to get a cart with a car attached to the front of it out of the cart corral. The basket of the car would not open so that she could put the carrier into the cart and so she was forced to head into the store carrying the baby carrier and making her son very unhappy when he had to get out of cart. When I had only two kids I remember struggling with two kids to make a trip to the store. The struggle was definitely real then but it is much more real to me now that I have added 5 more kids!
We don’t have a lot of storage space so we tend to make lots of trips to the grocery store. Trips any where with seven kids are an adventure. Depending on how much stuff we need I put the baby in the stroller or in the back of the cart. On trips for more groceries the 2-year-old sits in the front seat of the cart and the 9-year-old pushes either the stroller or the cart depending on the mood of the 2-year-old who is very opinionated about who she wants to push her in the cart. All the others walk with us. The three-year-old is usually the one who likes to run ahead and lag behind us so I usually have to assign her the job of holding the side of the cart or stroller and if that doesn’t work I stick her into the cart with the groceries!
I know my crew is quite a sight to behold! I field questions from strangers almost every time I go any where with all the kids but people are mostly friendly. I enjoy watching the kids interact with the cashiers and other staff at the store. I use trips to teach them about grocery shopping, budgeting, and meal planning.
The other day a gentleman asked me, “Why did you bring so many helpers to the store,” to which I responded, “We do what we have to do sometimes.”