Besieged upon by brutal cold this last little bit and while I am no shrinking violet when it comes to the cold, even this has sent enough shivers through me, that I am wearing more clothing than I normally do this time of year. Good hot chocolate weather though - or would be, if there actually were hot chocolate in the house. Kind of hard to warm up from the inside without it - though I suppose if I were really desperate, hot water would do fine, just wouldn't be as enjoyable and chicken soup is just so, well, chicken soup-y. So what's a girl to do? Sub arctic temps, cold tootsies and a dearth of warm, chocolatey powdery substances? Why - go to the store of course! See, I told you I was a fairly practical person and capable of making coherent decisions, sometimes.
Ever since the Walmart fiasco of early 2007, I no longer feel the need to torment myself and the general public by venturing to the store with my entire brood in tow. Even if we are completely devoid of any laundry soap and the dirty laundry has completely engulfed my basement and my almost 4 year old, I will wait until I can go in a much smaller group if not alone, or use shampoo. (I like my socks full and bouncy and shiny, don't you?) I am sure the general public is eternally grateful for my thoughtfullness on that point. With children old enough to watch younger siblings now (hooray!) - I feel making small, brief solo forays is feasible. With my cell phone. Fully charged. No further than 5 miles from the house. Checking in by phone every 10 minutes. With my State Trooper neighbor at home with his patrol car across the street in full view. No, I am not an overbearing, smothery worrying type - why do you ask? Hmmmmmmph.
Okay - so I went to the store, for chocolate. Is there any other more worthy cause? Okay, yeah, sure, maybe a few more - but this is vital. Sometimes. I like a little company now and then though. Though, most of them usually don't want to go with me. (I don't think I am that embarrassing, and I do shower somewhat regularly, but whatever.) Sadie likes to go though. She's my girl, and I usually don't have to bribe her with more than a regular cheeseburger with extra pickles too. Extra pickles is a small price to pay for some one on one time.
While getting ready to order the cheeseburger, Sadie informs me that all, and I do mean all, of her friends at school have Hotel Dogs. (This is the current Happy Meal toy being offered.) This is her way of letting me know that she wants one. I asked her "All?" and she affirms "all." "Even T . . .?" "Yes." "Even H.....?" (exasperated sigh) "Ye-aah!" Like duh mommy - when she said all, she apparantly meant all. So, I gave her a choice - dog or cheeseburger with extra pickles and she chose the food. Like I said, she's my girl! (If she had eaten her lunch I sent to school with her though - it might have been a different story . . .)
We proceeded to Kroger, who must have known we were coming for hot chocolate because they graciously put it on sale - 4 boxes for $5! That's 40 packets of hot chocolately warm goodness! I felt giddy. Sadie was a little put out by having to carry all four boxes. I did swap her for the cold can of whipped topping when she kept dropping one of the boxes though. We went to the self checkout and I let her check us out. She did quite well making sure the bar codes passed over the "magic window" and beeped before placing the items in the grocery bag. When we were out of items, she looked at me, "now what?" "Well now you have to pay." She doesn't bite, she's too smart for that, she knows I am going to pay for the hot chocolate, so she just stares at me impatiently.
We walk out of the store, each with a bag of spoils from our hot chocolate foray. "Sadie," I said, "You are an excellent shopping helper." This elicits a completely matter of fact "I know." "You know you are excellent?" "Oh yes, I was born that way!" She chatters along happily on our trek back to the parked car. For cheeseburger with extra pickles and a few boxes of hot chocolate, I learned that my 5 year old is not only an excellent shopping helper, but knows "lots of smart things" because her "brain just catches it all!", that she's totally amazing and she was just born that way.