I know I know. Every parent faces the problem at least once a week. Going shopping is one of the biggest nightmare for the parents and nannies. It is not enough that we have to go to the shopping centre, push a big trolley but our little one(s) usually starts to be hyperactive and play up by the time we arrive to the fist shelf in the shop. And if it wouldn’t be enough for our nerves the people are staring at us why we torture the apple of our eyes.
So how can we prevent this situation?
There are some really good tricks I usually do if it comes down to go shopping with babies or toddlers. The first and most important rule is: don’t go shopping first thing after a nap or just before any playgroup or play date. The child is full of energy and if they know their routine they know something interesting will happen (monkey music, museum, climbing, singing, etc.) So they will think the shop is a big play ground. First they will get all excited about the lovely colourful stuff on the shelves. So when you won’t let them out of the buggy or touch the things (not to mention pack the shelves) they will be disappointed and start to scream or cry.
The second important thing: never go shopping right before lunch or dinner. The child will be right after playtime, starving to death without any tolerance or patience. You will be lucky if you can make it home to feed them. So do yourself a favour and don’t even think about: oh I just pop into the shop and buy some things I need.
Another big nono for me going shopping when the baby or toddler is asleep. I usually like them to stay in bed while they have their usual nap. It is better for them (they get proper sleep) and better for us (we get some free time home alone). Of course it is up to anyone’s habits and time but I usually keep this one as golden rule. If we take the sleeping child to the shop they can wake up and get frightened what’s going on around them. Which means crying, loads of time to calm them down, shopping goods on the floor and a miserable kid in the hand:S
According to your own routine you can find the time between two playtime when they have snacks to go and do the shopping. When they had a good run around and they quite hungry for a snack that’s the time when you can put them into the buggy, run to the shop, open a nice packet of healthy child snack and tadam you can do the shopping without any disturbance because your 1-2-year-old will be too busy munching the rice cake or the raisins out of the pocket. There are loads of suitable and healthy child treats you can buy for them. (Always read the packet and make sure it is age appropriate for them!!!)