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I really never had that problem. I didn’t take them. They stayed at home with their father or an aunt. These days its wonderful. YOU CAN ORDER GROCERIES ONLINE AT WALMART , SELECT DAY AND TIME YOU WANT TO PICK THEM UP. AND SOMEONE BRINGS THEM RIGHT TO YOUR CAR. ITS WONDERFUL. you can select all the items you want, get a running total as you shopping so you don’t go over your budget. now I sit with my laptop a cup of coffee and grocery shop without stress, no more waiting in lines .
I have three young boys and I have been using all these tricks with success. It’s best, if you can, to time it right. Not a good trip to the grocery store if mom is hungry or if it’s really hot outside! The notepad works wonders with us. Choosing pasta shapes, too :-) I verbalize a lot of my thoughts to « walk » my boys through the decision making process, « this is definitely a treat, not a food. » or « I’m so glad spring onions are back, what else is in season? » Recently my sons have started to get interested in the price of things and a calculator comes in handy.
Katie, these are fantastic tips! Wish I’d had these at my disposal when raising my kids. A couple of them I actually did by sheer instinct, but all of them look good and would have been a huge help. I love the way you suggest engaging kids with decisions (such as establishing where the changeover point will be between siblings pushing the cart (empowers them to say hey, it’s time!). All in all, these would make grocery shopping with kids fun rather than a battle.
Katie – I loved your take on grocery shopping with little guys. I absolutely agree with the first commandment on your list: lay down the law. I adopted a rule early on. The child designated to get treats like the toys in the cereal box also got to do all the chores that week; that child sat in the front seat on car rides, got first pick when there were special foods, placed grocery items in the cart, decided which cereal we would take home, and was designated “gopher of the week”. They loved it. Everyone got a turn every three weeks. However, to this day I love grocery shopping. There are always new things to discover. It gives me the opportunity to select something new we’ve never tried before and I can then be creative in what I cook. When my three children were little, we always went grocery shopping together. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was teaching them good shopping and eating habits. They are all adults today with children of their own. Children learn from their parents, both good and bad. Way back when, grocery stores did not give out free cookies. My grocery list included fruits and vegetables, milk, eggs, cereal, rye and whole grain bread, chicken and fish. My children shop that way today. My son was pleased to let me know recently that so many people he knows don’t know how to cook rice. He said I gave all three of them the proportions of rice to water and he uses it today. And even though my grandchildren are vegetable lovers, they enjoy mac and cheese, corn dogs, french fries in the air fryer, gummy worms and all the rest of it once in a while. As the old saying goes, everything in moderation.
In the words of my pediatrician leave them at home with their other parent.
Failing that, do not go down the cookie aisle, bipass processed treats. They will be much healthier. That lifted half the pressure for me trying to teach them nutrition which started early. Also, we picked out seeds to grow our own food together. One toddler wanted to grow pickles, so cute! He still loves cucumbers and since he’s an adult he knows the difference. He doesn’t like processed sugar foods. He likes home made once in a while.
Terrific article. Smart, reasonable and knowing. Incentives are good. Funny how we think that adults should get them and kids shouldn’t.
I always carried a small pad in my purse. Whenever they saw something they wanted but was definitely not on the list, we would write it down as an idea for an upcoming birthday or Christmas present. So they felt acknowledged but I didn’t have to buy everything that caught their eye. My older kids would get the cold cut list. Forced them into public speaking ordering at the deli counter and saved me time waiting in line. I’m one of nine children so I learned a few tricks from my mom!
As an older gentleman, I would appreciate it if you and your children did not consistantly block the aisles/ram me with your basket.
I don’t mean that crossly, just a request!
A bribe is paying someone to do something bad. Rewarding kids for good behavior is not a bad thing. From my personal experience, food rewards lead to food problems later in life, so I would recommend a non-food reward. A short visit to the park to run and play (even though you have frozen things in the car), or a small toy, book or stickers, etc.
Now you tell me….I have a story that involves giving the dog the last Oreo and three snow suits !
@Suz – Or sugarless gum. Or carob bars. (Yuck.) But. I think the writer or this article makes it pretty clear that it doesn’t have to be a food item at all, not even sugarless gum – which actually, that was often a “treat” aka “bribe” while I was growing up (yes a treat is indeed a type of bribe). Supermarkets aren’t exactly lacking in non-food items. Let them choose one magazine at the checkout line or something. Big suburban supermarkets have toys all over the place waiting for a child in your cart to grab hold of.
I kinda think restricting EVERYTHING can turn out to be a problem, too. Anyway “bribe” has lost its negative connotations. It is paying someone, or doing them a favor, something that a friend or spouse or child or partner would not normally expect payment. It’s a more neutral word than it used to be – and/or varies depending upon context. Here, it makes sense. A bribe or trick or treat whatever the hell you call it, it’s the same thing. Negotiation skills are paramount from the very first!