Black Friday Shopping: What To Do With The Kids. I have a long-standing policy with the twins and Zoe: I don’t drag them from store to store all day, and they don’t set the paper towel aisle on fire when my back is turned. Kids uniformly look miserable, cry, drag on Mom’s hand and eventually collapse into what I like to call the Boneless Chicken Pose in the middle of the store.
Let’s face it: getting the Black Friday deals requires cunning, planning and the strength of a water buffalo to get through some of those crowds. Do you really want to do this with your offspring? Here’s some suggestions…
Black Friday Shopping: What To Do With The Kids
1. Re-visit: “5 Things To Do With A Bored Kid On Thanksgiving” post. For the little ones staying home, it’s a lifesaver.
2. Negotiate: some of us (cough, cough) are terrified of crowds and would rather face a passel of nieces and nephews than a bloodthirsty crowd of bargain hunters. Take the Sacrificial Lamb’s list and the deal is hers is filled first.
If you absolutely have to take your kids…
3. Prepare: a child’s “busy box” is never more important than during a shopping frenzy. Fill a little backpack with some of these ideas:
- small toys
- coloring book
- granola bars, fruit snacks, carrots
- water and juice
- extra underpants, diapers and wipes
- hand held games
- antibacterial gel (that’s for you–the last thing you need is the Swine Flu for the Holidays)
4. Alternate: my sisters and I shop as a team and bring the “twin stroller” from my boy’s infancy. It carries cranky toddlers, bags and purchases. One sister stands guard while the other two scatter through the store. For early morning runs, we tuck the kids into a blanket in the car and one sister stays with them and grins evilly at the rest of us freezing our fannies standing in line. No handy sisters? Hire a reliable teenager to follow you around.
5. Schedule: put small breaks in your schedule. Frankly, they’re more for us–the adults–than they are for them. It’s too easy to get overstimulated in the noise, shoving and general frenzy. Take a few breaks so you’re not “that horrible Mommy who threatened to sell her children for medical experiments–ugh, remember her?”