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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Tempting the Muddle

Everyday I strive to keep as much order in my household as humanly possible; however, as a mother, it often doesn't go as planned.

There are boo boos, sickness, messes, fights, discipline issues and schedule changes. So why on earth would I go out of my way to try and tempt the muddle, when I could have a perfectly peaceful day (well, maybe not perfect and definitely not peaceful) holed up in my house with the boys playing Thomas and watching Word World?

But that's just what I did today -- I tempted that muddle and I didn't look back.

I had so much to do today. An empty refrigerator and cupboard and two very hungry and whiny boys. Plus, I had to go pick something up at a friend's house.

I looked at my oldest son and had a pep talk in preparation for the "adventure" we were about to go on.

"Evan," I said, "We are going to go to Miss Lindsey's house, Trader Joes, Whole Foods and then Sam's Club today! How exciting is this going to be?! But mommy needs your help. I need you to remember what we need to get and I need you to be my extra special helper. Inside voices and keeping our hands to ourselves and you get to ride in the boat (cart)." I said all of this in my most exciting high pitched mommy voice I could muster.

It worked.

He looked up at me and screamed, "Trader Joes is my favorite! Can we get ice cream at Sam's Club?" There is no logical sequence to a 3-year-old's conversation and thoughts at times. Let me also note that Evan has never been to Trader Joes with me.

With his suggestion of ice cream at Sam's Club, and being that it would be our last stop, I told him that if he had extra special good behavior, that mommy would get ice cream at Sam's Club.

It was a good motivational idea. I wished I had thought of it myself.

I prepared THE bag.

THE bag, consists of snacks and drinks and little trinket odds and ends to keep the boys occupied in case of an emergency breakdown in the store. Usually the food does the trick. Especially for my youngest.

In the middle of preparing for our potential muddle of an adventure, Oliver, my one-year-old started to get really whiny. I've been dabbling in dropping his morning nap, but it looked like this morning we would have to hold off on our plans and stop to give him his nap.

My plans were foiled! But I was determined to not let this deter me. Instead, I thought to myself, that this would work in my favor. I could get some work done for my freelance job and have a bright eyed and happy little boy to take to the store when he woke up.

The problem was holding Evan back. He was ready to go Crocs and all. Blue's Clues and a game of Memory did the trick, but after an hour he was getting antsy and I couldn't lose my window of opportunity.

I woke Oliver up and with THE bag packed, we were off. The whole ride there I gave Evan the pep talk and hoped for the best.

We picked up our stuff at Miss Lindsey's house, we made it through Trader Joes with a slight attempt to challenge me by walking to the exit, and then Whole Foods. I was worried the most about Whole Foods.

Whole Foods contained the most items on my list and that place is always busy. But we made it, and they were actually the most well behaved in that store. Thanks to the Goldfish.

Off to Sam's Club and we celebrated with ice cream. Now, I don't always reward good behavior, but Evan often needs a "goal" to focus on; although sometimes the kids surprises me.

We made it into the car just as the first raindrop from the afternoon summer storm hit. It couldn't have been a more perfect shopping trip!

I had won! I felt like I had won the mommy lottery. It doesn't get better than this, and I know many of you can share my jubilation.

Would I tempt the muddle again? I'm not sure about that one. I've had my fair share of shopping catastrophes in my excursions with the boys. But today gave me hope that perhaps I can poke the muddle more than I think. Three stores and a stop off at a friends house was a lot, though.

This day is one for the books.


  1. Way to go Evan and Oliver!! Glad the day was a success! Thank you Lord for ice cream and goldfish!

  2. I am so enjoying your blog. :) I am not a mom, but I just adore reading about fun, interesting life experiences. You have a terrific voice. Great writing! :)