Friday, March 28, 2008

Mission: Possible

While we three girls have visited with many friends and family together (not to mention doctors and my midwife), I have been terrified of taking both kids into crowded, busy public places alone, especially in the cold winter. In five months (and one day), I have only taken both girls by myself to places like Bible study, to the library, and to the theater where I work. These places are kid-friendly, contained, and there are plenty of "contingency" mothers around to lend a hand if needed. Until now, major trips with both children have been accompanied by Tom, my mother, or even when Liesl's godmother Amy uses her day off to give us a hand. I have needed to go to stores and busy places many times when I am alone with both kids, but I am always concerned that Liesl will freak, Ava will start to scream, and that the planning, packing, and execution of such a mission in cold weather would rival that of any NASA project engineer's docket.

Now Ava is falling into something of a predictable routine with naps and nursing, and the weather is warming up a bit. We really needed a few new crib mattress pads, and I needed a few greeting cards for friends and family. So after Ava's morning nap and before Liesl's lunch, I loaded up both girls and went to Target. In the store, Ava rode in her baby car seat/carrier (I'm still terrified of putting her in a sling outdoors in this cold weather), and Liesl rode--illegally--in the basket of the cart. We did a return at the customer service desk and went about with our short shopping list.

Ava was in a perfect mood, having just had a nap and some nursing, and Liesl was very well-behaved--a relief to me, as her moods can and do change as fast as those of any normal 2 year-old. I was so happy with them both that I actually relaxed and enjoyed the errand. To celebrate, we had a sort of impulse buy, something that both girls would need eventually but I did not plan on buying today: white sandals for spring and summer church and dress-up. After picking up the mattress pad and greeting card, Liesl was just thrilled to tour the shoe aisle and comment on the many new spring fashions. Colorful shoes are fodder for very interesting chat with a toddler who now talks incessantly.

It's still a lot tougher than bringing only one child on errands. I'm not brave enough to drag them both on a huge Costco trip yet, but I daresay I've become far less chicken about taking both girls into stores and such. I am thankful, however, for warmer weather and conviences like the "baby bucket" car seat and huge grocery carts (whose child safety warnings that I, along with most other mothers with more than one child, will blatantly ignore.)

New shoes are terribly exciting when you're two.
(Their mother, not your typical shoe-shopping-happy woman, couldn't
care less about shoes for herself--and now I find buying shoes for little girls extremely fun.)


Swansong said...

What pretty new shoes!!!

I feel you on the taking two out in public and I am not even there yet. I am terrified!! What will help me out though is Aaron is staying in daycare so it will just be me and little one if we need a day time errand.

Peggy said...

That's so funny. I am so NOT a shoe person (probably own 8 pairs) but I LOVE buying them for the girls. They have lots and lots of shoes!

Amy said...

Good job, supermom! (Really!) I believe you have had personal experience with how much I dislike shoe shopping. Still, I remember how much I enjoyed getting brand new white sandals at Kmart every summer when I was little. I also remember how much I liked to use the swings on the playground when there were mud puddles beneath them, and how much I liked to drag my sandalled feet through the puddles (FUN!), and then the straps on the sandals would come unglued and separate from the soles, and I don't think Mom enjoyed that part as much as I did....