Stream of Consciousness: The List


I took the kids to Target. {It’s pronounced with a French accent and a soft ‘j’ instead of the harsh ‘g’ sound: “Tar-jay”, as if it may have possibly originated as a romantic and sophisticated petite shoppe in Paris, (pronounced Pa-Ree with a silent “s” as your tongue rolls the “ree”) because we’re fancy like that and besides, who doesn’t love Tar-jay?}

Anyway, I took all three kids, (because where else would they go?)  with me to get “a few” things. We were perusing* the isles for the items LEGITIMATELY on the shopping list.

{I promise, Honey, other than that one item, (which I purchased 4 of), everything REALLY was on the list…PLUS, I skipped 2 way more pricey items, thus making up for the 1 (x4) item.} (At least this is the reasoning that goes on in my mind.)

And, as a side note, Lady J had helped me write (and decorate) the list and was a constant reminder of what was actually on the list. So, so far, we were honestly, (mostly), sticking to it.

*Also, just to clarify, by “perusing” I mean that the kids had endured over an hour of actual helping to find the items on the list but we were now shopping on borrowed time and my youngest child was standing and serenading the store from the “front seat” of the cart because the buckle was broken and she can unhook herself in a New York minute anyway, while the older 2 were hanging off the side, jumping on and off the bottom level of the cart and touching EVERY. SINGLE. ITEM. we passed, all while I tried to avoid running them over or inadvertently turning sharply, resulting in a fallen child, loss of child’s toe, or toppled shelf…

Anyway, (deep breath), we were at the very end with just one more listed item to find. I could feel the tension and excitement mount as I neared the last obstacle, The Checkout Line.**

**It should be noted that The Checkout Line is an especially tricky obstacle to maneuver through with ease due to all of the tiny, hand-held, often-delicious temptations readily available for little hands to grab, but I am master of the word, “No,” and possess no less than 50 ways of saying it and actually adhering to it, thanks to those who ran the gauntlet before me and passed their skills along.

Ok, whew!

Now, I could taste the sweetness of imminent victory as I turned down the homestretch!

Suddenly, with each item we passed down the final sprint, tiny voices started trying to sell me items that were not listed:

“Hey Mom!” Lady J exclaimed,  “You should get this!  It’s oxi-clean and I hear it can really help keep our clothes brighter. It really works!”

Bud piped up, “Hey wook! Dat’s Cwowox Bweach! Dat’s fow wife’s Bweach-abwe moments!”

“Mom, I know we’re at Tar-jay,”{totally have them training for our future trip to Pa-Ree or an educational study abroad program in college} “but those stretch-kins are available at Walmart so we need to go there next because I’d really like one of those,” Lady J spewed out while practicing her not-quite-mastered negotiating skills.

“Oh! Mommy, did you awso see a Teddy Tank? I wike WEAWY wove doze. Can I pwease have one? I would put gum-baws oh candy in da bow, not a fish.” Bud advertised, batting is foot-long eye lashes and smiling his devilishly dimpled grin.

“I wike da one wif da fishy, Momma”  (Because who doesn’t love and need a teddy bear with a real built-in fish tank?!?!?!?!) “An I wike Dohnson’s baby wotion fo me skin!  It pink!” K-Mad joined in the barrage of ‘I wants’ and ‘gimmies’ with such charm and innocence that even I almost believed it and caved.

This trip was going downhill, fast, and The Checkout Line was the now only thing standing between me and having 3 children safely harnessed into their ultra safe, extra large, NHTSA & consumer report recommended car seats for a quiet drive home that would gently rock them into blissful naps with classical music and leave me with mere minutes of calm and serenity, so I chose the shortest line with the longest wait time, (what’s up with that, Murphy?!?!?!) and unloaded the cart onto the belt while the kids unloaded themselves EVERYWHERE

Finally, (after what felt like an eternity of price checking, polite smiles through gritted teeth, silent WTFs, visible niceties, ‘no you can’t have that’s, ‘please don’t touch those’s, and ‘put that back now’s), I quickly bagged the final item, swiped my card, thanked the nice cashier lady, tossed the kids into the cart while using my mad-counting-to-three-skills and octopus-mom-arms, and made a beeline for the great outdoors known as the parking lot. 

The ride home was full of blaring classical music that did not successfully drown out the shouts and whines of three children who were not napping even a little bit. All I could think was that a trip to “Le Spa” should be in order after that trip to “Tar-jay” (but that’s not on the damn list!) 

As I pulled into the driveway 30 minutes later, Lady J promptly reminded me that we never did find that final item on The List…


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