5 Tips for Running Easier Errands With Kids
Running errands with kids can be tough, but we're here to help. Check out these mom-approved tips for running easier errands with kids.
1. Freezer bags are your friends.
Putting a few snacks (bag of chips, a few veggies, a juice pouch, etc) in a freezer bag can help your little one occupy himself in the backseat. He can hold his own freezer bag o’ snacks and you don’t have to keep reaching back to hand him things. This trick also saves you from having to listen to your kids argue over shared snacks while you drive.
2. Bring something for them to do.
Kids will pester you to no end if their little minds aren’t occupied during your errands. It’s a good idea to keep a few mess-free activities for them to do in the backseat of your car. You could bring a coloring book and a few crayons for each kid, a hand-held game, or a set of flashcards (and all those things can be found at the dollar store!) Check out this list of activities for kids to do during car rides
3. Work around nap time.
You know the time of day that your kids get cranky and need a nap. Even if you don’t enforce naptime, it’s a good idea to avoid running your errands during your kids’ cranky-need-a-nap time. Not running errands during that time will minimize your chance of having to deal with a tantrum on Aisle 3. It will also lower the risk that you’ll have to abandon your errands because your child has fallen into a deep sleep during the drive.
4. Put them to work.
Assign your child a task for each errand. Maybe their job will be to remind you to get paper towels. You could have them help unload the cart at the checkout stand. Maybe their job is to put the items you hand them into the cart. Giving your kid a small task (or two) makes them feel a sense of responsibility, and minimizes the chances of negative behavior in the store.
5. It’s okay to bribe (sometimes).
Sometimes, it’s okay to promise a small reward in exchange for good behavior on your outings. When I notice my kids are starting to get cranky and tired of walking around with me, I offer them a Hot Wheels car if they make it through the final stop. The cars are only one dollar at the grocery store, but kids love them, and it’s a small price to pay for a smooth finish.
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