4 MUST DO's WHILE RUNNING ERRANDS WITH MULTIPLE KIDS
I want to see moms succeed. And sometimes regular life, simple day-to-day things can either make us or break us. Am I right? For me, it’s running errands with all my kids in tow BY MYSELF (insert dramatic “dun dun dun”). It seems so simple, but if I’m allowed to be honest, it has historically stressed me out and often caused things to be put on the back burner or not get completed at all. Doing errands is such a simple thing, and even though I have had a bit of practice, it still looms. Or, maybe you’re a new mom and the thought of taking your new baby somewhere is overwhelming? I feel you. If either of these is you, seasoned moms or new, here are a few tips that could make life a bit easier.
I have 3 kids ranging in ages from 18 months to 5, and honestly, I avoid going most places when it’s just them and myself (shout out to Steve who I ALWAYS prefer with us). But in all reality, sometimes I gotta do what I gotta do, and I pile them in their car seats to do what’s needing to be done. I usually get real serious with them before I even put the car into drive, say a little prayer over our time together, and then turn around and face the coming errand head on. Am I making this sound too dramatic? GOOD. Because it is.
But recently, and I don’t know if this is a culmination of the older two growing up and perhaps my stern words to begin with, but we had a wildly successful morning out and about. And I’m serious. I usually can only handle 1-2 stops before the exhaustion takes over, but this day we were shopping from 8:30 until 11:30. I was shocked. So, I thought to myself: “What was that all about? Did my kids suddenly mature? Did they suddenly grasp the concept of getting things done?”
And these are what I believe contributed to the success of a long (according to me) shopping trip:
It sounds simple, but let me tell you, preparing your young children for what is ahead can be the difference maker. It is, in my opinion, the difference between them having the endurance or the multiple mental breakdowns in the middle of aisle three.
Here is what I said: “We are going to go find a new dress for mommy. I haven’t bought a new dress in a very long time, and I would love one for Auntie’s wedding. So, we are going to go find the perfect one. We will probably have to go to lots of stores because the perfect one is hard to find, but we are going to try our best to find it.”
And BOOM. It was suddenly fun and exciting and although it had nothing to do with what they would receive, they knew what to expect.
How many times do you get to the dressing room about to try something on, and your child must emergently use the bathroom? This happens to me almost every time I go anywhere, and it does not matter if they went right before you left the house, either. So, I tried something new, and it worked beautifully. I took all the kids to the bathroom right when we got to the store. They were all required to try to go #1 and #2, and sure enough, if they try, it happens. We probably were in the bathroom for a solid 15 minutes, but it was while everyone was fresh and rested and when we were done, we were ready to tackle the day.
This one is hard for me. I am usually one to plow through a responsibility or errand no matter what the condition of the situation. But that glorious day, I took a break. I found a shaded area and let Samuel out of the stroller, and the older kids run around. They got to be kids in an otherwise rigid timeline of dress shopping. It allowed them to run and get energy out, and just have the kind of fun that fueled their hearts to endure a few more stops before heading home.
I’m not one to bribe, and this tip is a response to good behavior and not to get them to be good. We had gone through 4 stores, tried on several things, and it was taking me a lot longer than I expected, and the kids were holding it together like champs. They followed closely, suggested the right dress here and there, kept a low volume, and didn’t complain. I had one more store to stop at, and I could sense their physical fatigue and because they had been so well-behaved, I wanted them to be encouraged. Enter: a simple 11 am cookie. Not my healthiest moment, but who cares, because frankly, they deserved it. The last store was a breeze because their tummies were happy, the sugar was high, and they were encouraged throughout.
How do you do it? I’m not sure if this was a fluke, and I’m sure there will always be bumps in the road even with these tips, so I would love to hear any more tips or tricks to getting your multiple errands done and rocked!
Also, if you're interested in the dress I found, it was found at H&M, and I LOVE it! I provided the link below if you decide to forego the above tips and stay home and online shop instead. Ha!