I am hoping this is one of those blog Posts where the comments are just as interesting (if not more!) as the Post itself. I am curious to know how people with young kids are able to thrift as much as they do. Are your kids in school? With a sitter? Home with Daddy? Or frequently along for the ride, like mine are? I have a few tips and tricks that have worked for me--both to assuage my guilt for dragging my 2 and 4 year old with me and to let them have a little fun, too!
Three essentials in my survival kit are pictured above--a good, crunchy snack, a mini notebook, and a calculator(mine is an el cheapo freebie).
- A snack is downright mandatory for us. I make sure its semi-healthy and not messy--pretzels, gorp, almonds, dry cereal, rice cakes, etc. We probably make a trail-Hansel and Gretel style---thru the store, but no one has complained yet. Although my kids expect a snack, they know they have to wait for it. We have our regular routine--Shoes, housewares, books, linens----they don't get their snack until we have at least made it to the book section. A nice full snack bag keeps their little (hand-sanitized) hands busy for quite awhile.
- A mini notebook and clip on pencil or pen has a ton of uses for us. Free form doodling, sketching an item we see, practicing letters and numbers, writing our name...I can even jot a few things down that I am looking for and the kids can cross them off as we find 'em.
- A simple calculator started out as a phone for my eldest son. He'd have conversations on the calculator as we walked thru the store--me pretending to be whomever he was calling. Now it has morphed into a number learning tool. I tell him what to type in (we are doing double digit numbers) or I will type something in and he has to guess the number. We have started doing very rudimentary adding and subtracting too! My two year old just likes to punch in a bunch of numbers and hit the clear button! Magic!
Another game we have started recently was adapted from trips to Trader Joe's. Before we arrive at the store, we decide on a few things to "search" for. We go from easy (Find something striped, or something green) to more difficult (Find Santa riding a sleigh). Last week, in honor of mid-april snow in the Midwest, we searched for a snowman. We found some ( a candle holder with three snowmen) about 2/3 of the way thru our thrifting trip.
Along with these ideas for some kid fun, I take comfort in the fact that thrifting with my kids has begun to teach them about reuse, repurposing, and the fact that not everything we get has to be brand new.
Now for the best part! Please comment with your tips and tricks for thrifting with kiddos!! I can't wait to read your great ideas!!
*BETH* from fuzzymama