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The Top 7 Shopping Problems Moms Face

The Top 7 Shopping Problems Moms Face
Jackie De Pape Hornick

Remember when you could whip through the mall with a list in your hand and check off item after item from all corners of the building in record time? If you have children, chances are you can’t. Those are likely very distant memories. Shopping with children is a whole other ball game.

Whether you’re Mom, Dad, Grandma or any other sucker who is dragging children around a mall as you desperately attempt to “get stuff done,” here are the top seven problems you may encounter when shopping with little helpers.

1)     I have to pee! – These are the dreaded words you always seem to hear when you are nowhere near a bathroom or in a checkout line with a handful of items. Knowing kid at mallthese words often come with a tight time limit, it’s time to run and put the shopping list on hold. It’s always good to know where you’re running to when you’re running. Using the free FastMall app, available through iTunes and usable in all of the largest shopping malls in the U.S., you can simply shake an iPhone to locate the nearest restroom.

2)     Leave behinds – You arrive at the mall with everyone’s shoes, jackets, sippy cups, etc., but when it comes time to leave, there may be something missing. Asking your child which store they decided to leave their cup on a shelf in is a lost cause.

3)     Tight aisles – The item on your list is at the back of the store, but how do you get there? The aisles are so tight and your stroller doesn’t fit. Do you leave the kids in the stroller at the front of the store (to the glares of all fellow shoppers) or do you take the time to unbuckle everyone, grossly adding to your shopping time to pick up that one pesky item on your list.

4)     The dawdlers and wanderers – When you get beyond the stroller age, you have the pleasure of shopping with children who walk on their own – and definitely at their own pace. This could mean they are dragging their feet as you desperately clutch your list or they take off at lightning speed (in the wrong direction of course) as you try to reign them in. If you do have a major wanderer on your hands, consider placing the tiny GPS tracker Brookstone offers for $49.99 on your child’s jacket or backpack. No one wants to feel the panic of turning around and not seeing your child right away. It could be a lifesaver when you have a runner in a busy mall.

5)     Stroller vs. cart – Many strollers these days are fancy contraptions with plenty of storage space. A mall day can be a great opportunity to use the stroller’s storage space kid shopping cartsfor your coats and shopping bags and to cover a lot of ground quickly. But, when your last stop is one of the mall’s corner department/grocery stores that space often isn’t enough and you don’t have enough hands to push the stroller and the store’s cart. Which “vehicle” wins?

6)     Crash! Bang! – Chances are when you shop alone you manage to navigate a store without picking up random items and dropping them on purpose or knocking breakables off the shelf by accident. Shopping with kids has the potential to get expensive.

7)     Play or no play – Mall play areas are blessings, but sometimes they are curses too. Sometimes you just have a few things to get and don’t have time to stop or you can see from a distance that the area is insane with little monkeys hanging off every piece of that jungle gym. Whether you stop to play or take a vastly different shopping route to avoid the area, you will be adding time to your shopping trip. (Note: This same scenario can also occur when you pass an elevator or escalator.). Be sure to check the mall directory at your local mall for a play area. Of course, there is nothing better than shopping at Ikea where you can drop your potty-trained child off at Smalland for up to an hour of free childcare while you peacefully shop.

And sometimes, just sometimes, it is the adult that causes the problems instead. Haven’t we all at some point dragged kids back to the area of the mall we were at 10 minutes earlier because we forgot to buy one thing or taken out our wallets to pay only to discover we don’t even have our wallets?

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