Mom Against the World

Corey left Saturday morning for a four-day business trip.

I am alone. Utterly alone.

Unless you count the three kids, ages six, four and eight weeks, who are determined to help me release the grip I have on my remaining sanity.

Oh, I joke. It's not really that bad. In fact, I took all three of them to the grocery store yesterday -- a Saturday, mind you, which everyone knows is Amateur Day -- and I lived to tell the story.

Would you like my survival tips?

1. I told Natalie and Connor before we left that they would get a cookie or donut at the end of the expedition if and only if they were "big helpers." Sugar has amazing motivational powers. (Spoiler alert: Lunch consisted of donuts with sprinkles and hot chocolate with marshmallows. And I sprinkled some sugar on the marshmallows just for good measure.)

2. I wore Teyla in my favorite fashion accessory -- the Baby Bjorn. (I wonder what Big Mama would say about that.)

3. I made everyone wear their coats for the duration of the time in the store. As Antique Mommy acknowledged recently, the winter wear workout is quite exhausting for those of us in the Northern Regions. I'm so tired of dealing with the coats and gloves and hats and boots -- all of which are shed the minute we enter a heated building, leaving Mom Sherpa to tote the gear around -- I think I'm going to start my annual late-winter Coat Boycott this week. It's when I stop wearing my winter coat no matter how cold it gets because It Should Be Spring By Now. And yes, I'm totally serious. Besides, it's supposed to be 40 here this week. Forty! Who needs a coat with that kind of a heat wave?

4. I had a categorized list. (Which is really like saying, "Hi, I'm me." I never go to the grocery store without a list. Nev-ah. I can scuba dive, move 9 times in 15 years, give birth without any medication and marry a black-belt sky-diver who has broken almost every bone in his body, but I cannot grocery shop without a list. Because that's insanity.)

5. I refused to get the race-car shopping cart, because I know it's easier to drive a semi-truck through the streets of Manhattan than to steer that beast around the produce displays. Instead, we opted for the double-seater cart, so both of the older kids would have a place to sit if their legs wore out. (Naturally, they sat very little. But Natalie did use the harness belts as a bridle on the cart, which became her bucking bronco whenever I was more than five feet away. "Whoa girl! Whoa!")

6. I smiled at everyone who dared make eye contact with me. Most didn't. Wimps.

And to prove how bad I really am, I even bagged my own groceries. That's right. The check-out lady asked me if I wanted help, and I said, "Oh! No thanks. I'm good." Then I told myself that I'd like plastic (don't judge; I always recycle), and I commenced to pack the produce and dairy with like products to make it easier to put everything away when I got home.

(Insert wild applause here.)

Surprisingly, there was no gold medal waiting for me when I pushed my loaded cart into the parking lot in negative-degree wind chill.

I think I could totally win on Iron Mom America -- if someone would just invent the show.

Up next: Mom Against the World attempts to get all three kids to church on time. Too bad she doesn't know the car battery is dead. (Music swells ominously then out.)


  1. I'm on my own this week too, only there's only 2 of them. Glad you made it through the grocery store! So sorry about the battery, cause your reward for getting them out the door to church is Sunday School. Free babysitting!
    Wishing you a heatwave of at least 45!

  2. I am SO with you on a late winter coat boycott! You're right though, in March, I consider 40 to be warm.

    I wish I had a gold medal to give you. Or a box of Calgon! :)

  3. Being alone would be way easier than your current situation. And I think if I have to look for someone's mittens one more time, I will go berserk.

    Back in the dark ages of the 90's, before those special 2-seater shopping carts, I let my son stand on the end of the cart with one of those belts around him - he thought it was fun. But then of course his 2-year-old sister wanted to try it, so I (stupidly) let her do that on the side of the cart with another belt (our supermarket had the kind of shopping cart belts that you could take on and off). Of course, someone's balance shifted, and the cart went over on its side (on top of my 2-year-old) and I couldn't lift it up because of the weight of my son trapped on the end in his was a very embarrassing situation, and an old lady yelled at me for being stupid enough to let the kids ride like that, and my husband was overseas, and I went home and cried.

    I think if it happened now, though, I would laugh myself silly. And then I'd blog about it.

  4. Very nice. Applause. Sincere Applause. Bring on the 40's. Dare ya to bring the kids to school with no coats. Double Dare ya. ;)

  5. If you were here, I'd buy you Chick-Fil-A to celebrate such victory. You totally rock, Mom Against the World!

  6. You rock. That is some kind of accomplishment!!

    Can we get a little more detail on the black-belt-sky-diver? Or was that for effect? Because I totally bought it.

  7. Um, yeah, I ADORE you. You are a hoot. I can only imagine the smugly confident look on your face as you beelined through the store.

    And I'm soooo with you on the jacket rebellion! About done myself!


  8. 6. I smiled at everyone who dared make eye contact with me. Most didn't. Wimps

    This made me laugh out loud!:)
    Very funny!

    You have a great blog.


  9. Oh my, and I think I've got it bad taking a 2 1/2 year old to the store. The best is one he starts throwing the tomatoes b/c they look like red balls. He throws them right in front of the produce worker...and what does mom do...of course I then had to buy all three styrofoam tasting tomatoes!

    You Rock...and do divulge more about the sky-diving stuff!

  10. Too funny! I've yet to brave the grocery with my 3 year old, 22 month old, and 5 week old, but you can bet when I do, there will be much sugar bribery.

    Good luck flying solo for a few days.

    I find chocolate is a good substitute for the gold medal you most certainly deserve.

  11. it does seem like there should be some kind of reward for moms who grocery shop with all the kids, get them all home and inside then put them all away. especially if it's cold. it is like some kind of triathalon.

  12. APPLAUSE!!! You are so hilarious! I enjoy reading your blog very much!

  13. You do deserve a gold medal. Hmmm ... how about a bubble bath instead?

  14. I'm flying solo again this week too. Maybe we should meet up for a virtual cup of coffee and let the kids play.

  15. I am fortunate in that my hubby rarely travels and when he did, it wasn't for that long, with that young of baby. Hang in there! Being stuck inside for winter just seems to make it worse, doesn't it?

  16. I love this post, it so funny. Been there and done that before. Its brings back lots of memory's.

  17. First of all, you DO deserve a gold medal. And I completely agree with you on the race car cart. Holy CRAP those things are a bugger to steer. And if I'm being honest, the double seaters are hard for me to manipulate around the corners too! Too wide.

    The coat boycott has already happened at our house and it snowed last week. Whatever. I'm okay with being cold from the car to the store.

    You are a fantastic writer! This post was totally fun to read! I'll be back!

  18. Didn't you have your Gold Medal (flour) on your list?! :-) (Or is that just down here?)

    You made me laugh, as always. Next time I see someone like you I'll be SURE to make eye contact in your honor!!

    And a dead car battery. You poor thing. At least it didn't die in the store parking lot with the negative wind chill and all your groceries!!

  19. Thanks so much for the laugh... The mental pictures were great!

  20. If this were the Olympics, you would have won the Gold Medal, hands down!

  21. You rock! And I never wear a coat, unless I am being forced to stand outside watching children play in the snow... otherwise I just grit my teeth and smile as I race from store to store. I hate carrying coats and I don't like to wear one in the store... so it is easier to live without it. Of course I will never be able to move further north than Virginia, but that is fine, too, because of my sweet tea issues!

    Yay for you and your shopping trip! I hope you took a nap after unloading everything:-)

  22. Ooooooooh, scary. I remember my first few trips out of the house with three. Terrifying, I am not kidding you. And they took hours of prep time. You just - do NOT have enough hands! (The transition from two kids to three was a hard one for me.)

    Kudos. Marathon, smarathon.

  23. You mean people actually go to the store WITHOUT a list? Why, that's insanity!

  24. Kelly, I feel your loathing for coats, mittens, scarves and hats. Before I lived here and only visited this area, I couldn't understand how people could go without a coat when it was freezing, like 40 or 50 degrees. Now I'm among them. Now I know how tired they are of all the bundling. And really 40 degrees is quite balmy!

  25. I am VERY proud of you!! You are woman, hear you ROAR!!

  26. Up next: Mom Against the World attempts to get all three kids to church on time.

    Wait, didn't Einstein prove that that is physically impossible? That's what I've been telling myself anyway. :)

    I know I'm late on this but, dang, I don't know how you did it. I have three ages three and under and I think I'd just lock myself in a closet and cry if my husband went out of town!

  27. I loved this post and am so with you about the race car shopping cart. I accidentally bumped a woman's leg with one of those carts and despite my remorseful string of apologies each time we passed in an aisle she returned my "I'm so sorry please forgive me smile" with an icy glare.