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Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Harder Than it Sounds

I woke up feeling like I should get something accomplished today.  Something big.  Something that would make a significant dent in my monumentally long to-do list.

Then I asked Maddie what she  wanted me to get done, and her answer was a resounding "NOTHING."  So I scaled back my lofty goals and decided just to go to the grocery store.

 

It's been a while since Mads and I have ventured out to do much of anything other than go for a walk or pick up the kids from school, and I'll tell you why.  Going into public for any length of time with a baby takes f.o.r.e.v.e.r.  First, you have to prepare to leave the house, which goes like this:
  1. Change baby's diaper so she'll be fresh and clean for the trip.
  2. Try to feed her so she won't get hungry before you get to the end of the driveway.
  3. Now baby is drowsy from being fed and starts to doze off.  Try to put baby down for nap so you can get yourself ready to go, but that wakes her right up.  This makes her cranky.
  4. Remember you need coupons.  Go through existing coupon stash, getting rid of 99% of them because they're expired.  Dig up 2-week-old newspaper you never had time to read.  Try to cut out new(er) coupons while irritable baby squirms on your lap.
  5. Find the diaper bag.  Discover that there are no actual diapers in it.  Or wipes.  Or anything else you need.  Run all over the house collecting the things you probably won't need while you're out, but will cause a huge scene if you end up needing them and don't have them.
  6. Realize that by now, it's lunch time.  Open fridge, find package of string cheese you can eat without sitting down so you don't interrupt your quest to Get Out of the House.
  7. With cranky baby on your hip, pass by the bathroom mirror and catch your reflection.  Remember that you haven't gotten ready yet.  Due to how late it's getting, decide you look good enough not to scare children and that the stain on your shirt is barely noticeable.
  8. Oops, time to change her diaper again.
  9. Find the grocery list, but it only has three things on it and you're pretty sure you've eaten more than three things since the last time you went to the store.  Scan fridge & pantry, and complete the list while baby attempts to get your pen in her mouth.
  10. Soothe baby who's frustrated that she's not allowed to eat pens.
  11. Because many hours have passed since you started this process, step outside to check weather to make sure baby's outfit is appropriate.  Temperature has gone up 15 degrees, so go upstairs and adjust accordingly or else you'll have to listen to every woman you see over the age of 60 tell you that your baby is going to get heatstroke/an ear infection/tendinitis if you don't change her clothes.
  12. Change diaper.
And so on.  At this point I KNEW it was a bad idea to go to the store when she hadn't had a nap, but I was already committed to it.  The only thing worse than going to the store with a cranky baby is spending all day getting ready to go to the store and then not going.  At least, that's what you think, until you're at the store with a screaming baby, seriously considering abandoning your half-full cart and thinking, "Why, oh why, didn't I stay home and watch Oprah?"

But I suppose it could have been worse.  She was fascinated while I returned cans, which (for those of you who live in a normal state) is what we do around here to get back the extra money we have to pay for soda up front, which is criminally stupid if you ask me, not to mention the process is loud and filthy, but I'm sure at some point in the past it sounded like a swell idea to charge a deposit for bottles and cans which then requires otherwise ordinary citizens to bring their garbage into the place where they buy food in order to get a refund.  Anyway, Maddie loved it, and although we had to skip several aisles when her whimpering and indoor-voice vowels threatened to crescendo into a full-blown freak out, we essentially ended up getting most of what we came for.  And in the process I only had to dodge five little old ladies who wanted to approach Maddie and coo at her (note: anyone other than Gerry or me entering Maddie's visual space can cause instant meltdown) and politely avoid the well-intentioned baby-touching of one woman who may or may not have had leprosy (no offense, lady).  I did have to sucker punch one store employee who, despite me standing next to her clearly waiting to ask a question while holding a squawking baby, was engaged in inane conversation with another store employee about Tom, who evidently doesn't do his fair share of the restocking, because all I wanted to know was WHERE IS THE HONEY, FOR GOD'S SAKE?!??  It's in Aisle 3 as it turns out, and the clerk is recovering nicely, I hear.  So overall, I consider the whole thing a huge success.


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1 comment:

  1. To quote the Budweiser commercials, "True, true." I used to pride myself on being punctual, but after having a kid, that's gone out the window. We're past the baby stage, but I continually fail to factor enough time for squabbles over wearing two different shoes, why we can't take a bowl of cereal in the car, and oh yeah, did I pack some freakin' fruit snacks???

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