Before I begin to complain, let me first say that I really have had it easy shopping with Adeline...up until this point. She's come along with me on just about every grocery and shopping trip over the last year. I usually get comments from cashiers or others in line that Addie was so quiet they had no idea she was even in the store--a mother's dream! Mostly I carried her in my wrap, until about eight months, then she started riding in the cart. At first Adeline thought this was pretty neat, then decided she'd rather be held (ugh) and a month later we enjoyed a semi-return to the cart. It's quite challenging to push a full, usually crooked, grocery cart and hold a 20 pound wriggling toddler. I think if I saw me, I'd give myself one of those sad "I totally understand" smiles, and then offer to help. I'm truly surprised that in 13 months of grocery shopping with her, there's only been one person who has offered to help unload my cart. I'm telling you, when Addie's old enough I will certainly be aiding new mommies with this. Bending over into the cart, one handed, while balancing a baby on your hip, takes a loooot longer to get everything on the cashier's lane. And people just stand behind and watch this circus. Interesting.
Anyway, now that she's WALKING, she doesn't want to be carried either. When we arrived at Target yesterday, I braced myself for her ear-shattering scream as I decided to just try and put her in the cart first. A definite no-go! After a quick hollar for all of Target, I took her out and held her. I don't want her to get everything she demands; however, I hate being THAT mom at a restaurant or store that let's her baby disturb everyone else. Even though that now I'm a mom, it's really not disrupting; I just feel bad for the mama. After switching her from hip to hip, arms tired, halfway through the store she decided it was time to walk. Now, she doesn't just follow you wherever you need to go, she want s to go where SHE wants to go! This results in more earth-shaking screaming when you need to redirect her. I let her walk for a couple minutes near the art section before she started to wander all over the place, leaving my cart (and purse) unattended. So, back on the hip she went, very unhappily. At that point we made a mad dash for the check-out lane, still knowing we had at least five minutes before I could exit. (Sorry, Honey, there was no way I was going back to the other end of the store for the oil and filter you requested!)
That's when I came up with the idea to put her in the larger end of the cart so she had some freedom to "walk." Genius! She loved being able to move around, although I kept having to hide her favorite grocery items as she whined for the blueberries and tangaerines she spotted. We made it through the check-out line no problem and then cruised out to the car. I say "cruised" because it looked like Addie was doing just that. I imagined her 15 years later, driving in a cool car, arm out the window, feeling free. She held on to the sides of the cart, hair blowing in the wind, feeling pretty good. And theeeen, I had to take her out to go back in the car seat. Not a happy camper; she wanted to keep joyriding. At least I have a new option for the next trip, if I can keep her out of the food, that is!