Memories and healthy recipes for your dinner table.



I do my best to avoid taking my little ones with me to the store. If I do venture out with them in tow, it is always first thing in the morning before they get tired, right after their snack. As a mom, I am glad to see grocery stores catering more toward moms with young kids. The grocery store we go to has car shopping carts to keep kids pre-occupied. When I was growing up, the bakery gave away a free cookie. Yet, there are times they get bored with driving the fire engine and would rather help fill up the cart with whatever goodies catch their eyes, This ultimately ends in my 2-year-old screaming an aria all the way to the car.

After one disastrous trip, I remembered something a great friend once told me. She suggested that I take a picture album and fill it with pictures of my baby, but also include pictures of the foods my baby liked to eat. Then take the album with me when I go to the grocery store and help my son find the items. The next thought I had was, my kids love to help me cook and clean. At home, if they are bored, I give them a task and most of the time they are more than excited to take it on. That got me thinking.

Give the kids a task. The grocery store is a playground for learning. Let them help locate the items on your list. The kids think it is a game and what kid does not like a game of “I Spy”?  My 4-year-old son has started making his own shopping list.

Think numbers and colors, not to mention vocabulary skills. Children can learn valuable math skills when they use the scale to weigh items or count out money at the register. My kids love counting the vegetables and fruits as they put them in the bags. If you have toddlers, help them discover different textures by letting them touch an item. Teach them the name in addition to the shape and color.