One of Those Shopping Trips

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Ever have one of THOSE shopping trips with little ones? Where you know, just by the simple act of informing them you have to run an errand, you are doomed?

Yea, I had that trip to Target this afternoon.

I literally only needed handful of things, so I figured it’d be a quick in-and-out trip and I wouldn’t have to venture out after the kids were in bed and could, instead, relax. (And by relax, I mean finish up work. Haha.) I should have known that my selfish indulgence of tacking an errand on to the post-camp pick-up would bite me.

Seriously, I have been a mom for over seven years. I know better. Rookie mistake.

First, I was introduced to the terms ‘snart’ and ‘snoot’.

Not familiar? Become buddies with Gavin. He’ll teach you all kinds of inappropriately hilarious stuff.

We were motoring by the laundry detergent when Gavin stopped in his tracks, sneezed and gleefully cried, “Mom! I just snarted. ”

You can see where this is going, right?

I said, “What does ‘snarted’ mean?”

He said, “Oh – it’s a sneeze and a fart. When you do them together, it’s a snart.”

Now, none of this was in an inside voice. For some reason, and maybe it was just my interpretation based on the embarrassing subject matter he was conveying, it seemed like he was shouting. I caught a couple look at each and giggle as they walked by. Unfortunately, I chuckled as I tried to invoke my best – “shut it down now, buddy!” glare + furrowed brow. I punctuated this with a pretty feeble reminder that this wasn’t a nice subject to talk about in a public place. Or anywhere, really, but at least at home, he’s not spreading his Gavin-isms around for all to enjoy.

We kept going while I pondered if he made up “snart” or if it was actually a term people used and I am just clueless.

A few aisles later, Gavin declared, “Actually, Mom? I snooted. Not snarted. That’s when you toot and sneeze at the same time.” Ha. Great. I guess my admonishment was taken to mean that I didn’t like him using the word ‘fart’, so he softened it to ‘toot’. I would have felt slightly better, but he was still practically shouting in an ridiculously-crowded-for-5 p.m.-on-a-Wednesday Target.

A woman gave me sideways glance as she tried to skirt past us without making eye contact with the self-proclaimed Snooter and his mortified mother and giggling sister.

My kids mistakenly took the aisles for a WWE ring and my cart for a jungle gym.

Seriously – they were at camp ALL DAY. Did they not work any of this energy out while there? Wow. Just wow.

In between them asking me to buy them stuff at a thirty-second clip, I had to correct them no less than 10 times for physical offenses, and with each passing offense of Gavin picking Grace up and trying to twirl her, Gavin doing dance moves and taking up the whole aisle (like people literally had to stop their carts for him), Grace singing while hanging from the cart by one arm and looking up at the ceiling, them literally trying to pin each other’s arms behind their backs, etc., I could feel my tone sharpening. I started off doing the ‘lean in and politely remind them this behavior is inappropriate’ and escalated to snapping ‘GUYS. NO. You are too old to be acting like this.’ I caught one woman doing ‘big eyeballs’ at me, and simply by that one instance, I will assume that no less than 15 other shoppers judged me as a horrible mom who has no patience for her zestful children.

Grace capped off the trip with her signature move – a twenty minute stop in a public restroom.

Grace is a huge fan of public restrooms. Huge. Like there’s not one she won’t visit. Naturally, she suddenly had an emergency need after we checked out. Which meant that I had a cart of goods that were now technically mine, my purse and a seven-year-old boy who’s well into the territory where his presence in ladies’ rooms is no longer publicly accepted. I asked her if she could survive the 10 minute ride home. Naturally, the answer was no. So, off we went.

I set Gavin right outside the door and told him to watch our stuff and specifically my purse so I could get Grace set up. Grace promised she’d be quick. She wasn’t. She never is.

So I spent the next twenty minutes holding the ladies’ room door open for female patrons at the local Target. I am sure people didn’t find that creepy at all. The only thing I had going for me is that I wasn’t holding a tip jar.

During my stint as restroom greeter, a bald woman happened to pass through. Naturally, Gavin doesn’t miss a trick. And naturally, because he is in a shouting kind of mood today, he shouted (not two seconds after she passed by), “Mom – did you see that lady? She was bald.  Wow. I have never seen a bald lady before. Only bald men.”

Awesome sauce.

Now I get to give my son an overly enunciated and loud acceptance lesson while I am holding the door to the ladies’ room,  awkwardly smiling at people who are coming in and out (why the heck are so many people using this restroom – seriously!) and trying to explain away my creepiness with a “young daughter was inside and I didn’t want to leave my son in the hall by himself” story, and occasionally shouting to Grace that she needed to wrap it up.

“Yep, I saw that. Pretty neat, right? People can wear their hair however they want. Just like clothes. And shoes. And things like tattoos and earrings. It’s what makes them special and unique.” Love, Mom.

I finally reached my limit with Grace and the bathroom and made her come out. She sauntered over to the sink and started literally giving herself the equivalent of a sponge bath with the soap, water, and her hands. I made her rinse, picked her up without drying her hands and we were off.

Naturally, she was whining – loudly – that her hands were ‘so wet and it’s not fair that I didn’t get to use a paper towellllllllll.’

With the end in sight, I sweetly said,” Suck it up, sweetie. We’re done.”

I am quite sure there are going to be viral security videos of any / all of this on YouTube any moment now. Enjoy!

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