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Surviving Carless Errand Runs with Kids

| July 17, 2014 | 13 Comments

As a busy mom of three very rambunctious children, I have had to learn how to get things done. Running errands is no small feat for me when I am flying solo, but I also want to try and make it fun, too. This is how we roll when I errands with my entourage:

Groupshot-1

 This is what I take along with me to accomplish this feat:

• Water Bottle (just in case we get thirsty on the way, or if we make any extra stops);
• A Toy (so the toy can join in on the adventure);
• A Small Emergency Kit (because I never know what will happen while we are out!);
• Re-Usable Bags (to carry my items back home); and a
• Back Pack (The most important item; a make-shift diaper bag, carrier of keys, water bottle, gum, smartphone, re-usable bags, etc)

I try to carry as little as possible since I will be carrying items home, and want to prepared just in case someone gets a boo-boo!
Sure, I could drive, but why when my kids need to be outside and see their neighbourhood. I also believe that they should not always rely on the convenience of a car. I also think that they should learn how to get around their community without causing too much of a carbon footprint even have them get out of their kid-mobiles to stretch their legs and pull the wagon for a few blocks. It may take a little bit longer, but they feel as though they are a part of the trip, not just being dragged along for the ride.

Adventure Collage

I like getting the toughest part of our walk around The Glebe out of the way first: shopping. Purchasing items, whether we are at the neighbourhood grocery store, the pharmacy, or at the bakery, is always a fun time for my little guys, yet not so much fun for me. I always have one of my little ones with me as I pay for my groceries, as they can become a handful. They either want to wiggle out of my arms while I go through my wallet to find either a card or cash to pay for my purchases, or want to press the buttons on the debit machine. Shopping has become easier since I started using the TD Mobile Payment App on my smartphone. My items at this shop are paid for without much fuss, and off I go to my next stop!

One of my favourite parts of taking my kids out is right after the shopping: Snack Time! I always try to buy a snack that they can enjoy sitting down so my eldest and I can get a bit of a break from walking and keeping the younger two from going on solo exploring missions. We like to pick out a comfy spot where we can become people-watching while inhaling our treats. We like to try to eat healthy while at home, so I like splurging while we are out. It is always accompanied with a tasty drink and smiles as we have a good time with our treats and watching the streets as people go about their business.

 Bench Collage

 If my errands did not involve me buying anything that is perishable, I let the kids loose on one of the parks in the area. This gives me a break from lugging my items home, and the kids get to socialize with other kids from the area! It also tires them out a bit more, so they will go down for their nap easier.

Park Collage

And we are home! Once up the stairs, my kids ask me if they can bring some of the items I’ve bought into the house. They always want to help, and I want them to keep this urge to want to do things to help me out around the house.

That is how I get errands done that I can accomplish around my neighborhood with my kids without a car! I like sharing moments with my children while walking in my community and not always having to worry about what they are doing in the back seat. Doing my errands without my car also allows me to get in some much needed exercise! By the time I get home from these trips, I feel so much better about myself for getting up and essentially going for a good walk while running errands. It’s like killing two birds with one stone! This can also be done by bike if you have the trailer for them to ride around in. I am not saying that I would never use a car to run errands with kids, but I feel that it is not a necessary to use whenever you need to pick something up, either. It can be a lot of fun for all of you!

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Category: Babies & Toddlers, Being Green, Family, Kids, Living, Moms, Shopping

About the Author ()

My name is Lian Wright. Born in Toronto, I came to Ottawa as a student to study Political Science at Carleton University, and came away with an Honours Degree, and decided to stay. I'm a huge sports fan, have a love of reading, and like experiencing new things whenever I can. I am now a mother of three children (11, 1 and 7 months old) and am kept constantly on my toes. My blog, Pieces of Me, is my way of sharing what I have enjoyed and encountered in my life so far as a mother. So far, being a mom has had it's expected ups and downs, but that's what makes being a parent so fulfilling for me. I've loved and learned from what's happened so far, and I can't wait to see what's in store for me next. I hope you enjoy the journey with me! Author's website.

Comments (13)

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  1. Victoria Ess says:

    Your trips sound so much less stressful than they can be with kids in tow. Great ideas!

  2. Judy Cowan says:

    Great ideas and you are right it can be a fun outing with the right planning.

  3. KD says:

    Thank you for sharing this! It’s great to have kids start helping out from an early age. The “not bringing too much” with you is a great tip, to have more room to carry things home!

  4. cbrazil says:

    I enjoy the almost daily trips out and about with my two kids, My son can proudly ride his bike now and my daughter is happy to sit in her stroller. 🙂

  5. kathy downey says:

    I enjoy the rush,rush,life is easier now that they are older and just ride bike or walk along

  6. jaimeem says:

    My son doesnt ever have too much of an issue when we go out. He often will ride his bike or big wheel around with me. (yes, ive even grocery shopped with him bringing this along and locking it up)

  7. Suzie M says:

    Good for you & lots of good ideas. Being green takes a lot of thought

  8. Elizabeth Matthiesen says:

    I really enjoyed reading this – I can well remember shopping trips with up to 7 kids in tow – it wasn’t always fun! I did however find it amusing when the store detective followed us, so sure that with a lot of kids we would be shop-lifting this and that. I wonder if he was disappointed that we didn’t.

  9. kathy downey says:

    This was a great read,oh I do remember the shopping trips

  10. Lian says:

    Thank you for all of the comments, ladies! Yes, my kids can be a bit of a hand-full from time to time whenever go out, but generally, they are good. They want to help pay for items, and want to explore. I could not imagine shopping with many more children than I have, though, so I must tip my hat to those that do! It is hard to try and conserve energy, but I think it is a good lesson to teach my kids. The exercise won’t kill any of them, or me, either!

  11. DARLENE W says:

    Just make everything an adventure and everyone will have fun

  12. kathy downey says:

    You have posted some great ideas

  13. Olen says:

    Slowing down is the key to enjoyment.

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