Today we had to do some shopping.
We started at Target. I really love Target. He was pretty good when we got there. Today was his first shopping trip that he got to be outside of the cart. He's been too big for the seat for awhile, but his complete lack of self control made me hesitant to just let him hoof it. So, he's been riding down in the cart. Well now he's getting so big that if he's in the cart, there's not a whole lot of room for anything else.
So he was loose as a goose today.
Apparently he hasn't actually been paying attention to anything on the shelves for the last three years that he's been in the cart, because he found endless amazement down every aisle.
"Mom! They got tacos here! Just like on the commercial!"
"Mom! I've never seen so much JAM! Lookit all this stuff for toast!"
It was aisle after aisle of fascinating wonders.
After the wonderment of Target we headed to Costco for a few things. And of course, delicious Costco pizza for lunch. Costco has bigger carts so naturally I assumed he was basket-bound when we got there, but after a taste of freedom he wasn't about to go back in the cart. We had a quick run down of the Walking Around Costco Rules.
"You stay right by Mom's cart, got it?"
He's the kind of kid who will try to climb the jungle gym display in the middle of the store if he breaks loose.
"You don't take anything off the shelf, got it?"
I'm already seeing hernias from lifting giant cans of corn, and smashed toes from dropping the aforementioned cans.
"You don't eat any snacks from the poufy-hat people unless Mom sees it first, got it?"
Those sample people like to poke food into cute little kids, hellooooooo allergic reaction.
In we went.
"UH, MOM. DID YOU SEE THAT TV? IT'S THE BIGGEST TV I'VE EVER SEEN! WHOA! LOOK AT ALL THOSE FURNITURES! LET'S GET SOME CHAIRS! THEY GOT TOYS HERE!"
So clearly he hasn't been paying attention when we've been at Costco either.
"Calm down, buddy, we don't need any of these things today. We have to keep rolling so we can get pizza."
"WHOA! What's down there?!" And he was gone, breaking Rule #1.
But he was right back, with merchandise in hand, breaking Rule #2.
"BATTERIES GALORE! MOM WE NEEDED THESE", he squawked as he chucked a billion-count package of double A's into the cart.
"HEY! THAT BOY'S GOT A SNACK, I WANT ONE!" And this is where I lost my cool, there's no way we were going to hit Rule #3 without some interception. I whipped out the Loud Mom Voice, to match his newly discovered Loud Kid Voice.
"FREEZE, GOPHER. No snacks, we're going to get pizza in a minute. And you don't know that lady. And you don't know what her snack is. It might have peanuts in it."
"It doesn't, Mom. I read the 'gredients, it said: No peanuts in this snack. Good for boys to eat."
What a little conniver!
"No dice, pal. It's lunch time, we're skipping snacks today."
Surprisingly enough he went on by, I think he was delirious from the excitement of experiencing Costco on foot.
We finished our shopping and headed over to get pizza at the food court, which was another round of new and exciting adventures.
"Mom! I can reach the straws here!" Perfect. How many fingers have been on that thing today?
"Please don't touch that germy straw holder."
"Mom! Look at that onion cranker! That thing stinks! That guy's putting stinky onions on his hotdog. Yuck." I'm hoping there was enough other noise that Onion Guy didn't hear him.
"Some people like onions, just cool it."
"MOM! They got video games here!" What?
Jon's "video games" were the pop and water vending machines, and here was an opportunity!
"Jon! if you're REALLY good, we can play the water game after we get pizza. Want to?!"
"YES! YES! HOW DO WE PLAY IT?!"
"First, you have to use your inside voice for the rest of the trip, and eat all of your pizza using good manners. Can you do that?"
"Yes, yes, I'm so excited," he said in an excited whisper.
I've never seen him eat so politely, and not a peep out of him. He just sat wide-eyed, staring at the "water game." When he was done I slid two quarters across the table to him.
"Are you ready to play the water game? You've been so good!"
"YES," he bellowed, followed by a whispered, "I mean, yes."
Off we went. Jon put in his quarters, giggling like a fiend, pushed D3, and down came the water.
That was probably the best fifty cents I have ever spent.
"IT CAME DOWN TO THIS PUSHER DOOR! CAN I HAVE IT? I GOT ONE, MOM! CAN WE TAKE IT HOME? I CAN PUT A STRAW IN IT!"
"Yes, honey, you can. Jon, how have you never seen this thing? We sit right by it every time we're at Costco. What do you do when you're in the cart and Mommy's buying stuff?"
"I just look at you, Mom. You're pretty."
Tears in my eyes at the food court! (And they weren't from smelling the stinky onion cranker.)
That little lunatic is such a sweetie pie, I bet I gave him a thousand kisses on the way out the door.