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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

G is for groceries...and grateful

If you're one of my Facebook friends, then you might know that I had to go to the grocery store today because Annie argued that she couldn't make a breakfast out of carrots and hot dog buns. While I agree w/my friend Shelley that Annie just needs to be more culinarily creative, I did sit down to make out a menu and a shopping list.

I was feeling a little guilty (look! another G word) that I didn't have any coupons to take with me, but I decided to just plow ahead. I did at least plan to go to Meijer where I have found the groceries to be cheaper than at the two stores that are actually closer to my house. And I looked over the weekly ad, so I could plan my menu around the sales.

Once I was ready to go, I asked Robbie if he would come with me. I'm not sure what made me do that. I generally have a rule that I go grocery shopping alone -- keeps those impulse purchases to a minimum. But, I must have been thinking that having only two kids at home while I was gone would keep the peace a little better. So I asked Robbie to join me and amazingly he said yes. He's really a homebody and pretty much always will choose "stay home" when given the option.

So off we went, my little helper and I, armed with nothing but a grocery list. And do you know, we had a wonderful time! The store was not very crowded. We started out choosing a few pairs of waterproof gloves at 40% off and a $5 pair of slippers for Robbie's icy cold morning feet. Then it was off to the grocery department.

Robbie asked if we could stop to look at the fish -- the live ones swimming, not the dead ones in the meat case. So we did. We then headed to the dairy department, where we picked out cheese and yogurt and cinnamon rolls for breakfast one day this week. Robbie was so fun to be with. No whining, no pleading, no running off without me. When I turned down his cereal selections (Cocoa Puffs and Lucky Charms), but offered that he could pick out a box of fruit snacks, he was fine with that.

He did get a little weary, but didn't whine about it. Instead he asked, "Mom, is our cart full yet?" I'm sure some of you will think that I'm making way too big a deal about grocery shopping, but it was one of those experiences where I just felt so grateful to be there with that child, to be sharing a simple yet lovely time with a kid who often leaves me exasperated.

When, finally, our cart was indeed full, we took our place in line. As I unloaded the groceries onto the belt, an older woman came up to me, reached out a few pieces of paper in her hand and asked if I could use them. I looked and they were 3 coupons for 5% off the total grocery order -- and you could combine up to 4 of them at once. So instead of having no coupon savings, as I thought I would when we left the house, I ended up saving $40. All thanks to the kindness of a stranger.

So yes, G is for groceries...and for very grateful.


Joanie said...

My grocery bill is always $20 to $30 more when Dani shops with me... or if John shops with me! Of course, when John does it, he gives me money.
It's nice that you had a pleasant time with your son, just the 2 of you!

I ALWAYS forget my coupons!

stewbert said...

I only wish my kids were that well behaved at the store! what a great day. :)

And our groceries the next two weeks were paid for by a kind neighbor or two who left gift cards attached to a tiny Christmas tree on our front door step two days before Christmas. G is for grateful here, too.

Eternal Lizdom said...

I love this story!! I love one on one time with kids, I love the kindness of strangers, I love positive parenting time... what a great day!

Nate's Mom said...

What a lovely day. I love one on one time with the kids, especially when turns out to be really GOOD one on one time. YAY on the kind stranger too. I love randoms acts of kindness.

So, where do the letter come from that you use to prompt posts? I need something to get me going sometimes.

Sheri in CA

Amy said...

@Stewbert - Oh, my kids are not usually that well-behaved at the store. That's why my general rule is to go alone. And what a wonderful neighbor you have!

@Sherri - G just came out of my head. But you could pick one day a week and do a new letter. That would be a fun meme to start.