“It’s the most wonderful time of the year..” Yes it is, I love the Holiday season, but shopping specially with kids could be a nightmare! I’ve done it many times and I seriously wanted to scream every minute of it, so since I have no other choice but to bring my two boys with me shopping, I came up with these.
These Tips to Shop with Kids During The Holidays are good for kids 3 years and over, mine boys are 7 & 9.
Start Early and Plan ahead.
- Plan your shopping trip the night before. The night before, put kids to bed early so they’re not tired during shopping day.
- Feed them a good breakfast. Mornings are hectic, but is important to feed the kids a good breakfast to avoid more tantrums than normal because they’re hungry.
- Dress them comfortable. You want the little ones to be as comfortable as possible, not hot or cold and there might be more than a few trips to the restroom so make sure they wear easy to pull down and up pants.
- Plan to get to the stores early to avoid the crowds. The faster you can get in and out of the store the better, I’m usually at the stores right when they open, plus parking is easier, with 2 kids in the car I don’t want to fight for a parking spot.
Keep them entertained while shopping.
Doesn’t matter the age of the kids, you have to plan ways to keep them busy while you shop, so here are some ides:
- I KNOW WE HATE THEM! But vide games are a great choice, iphones, ipads, ?? make sure to bring portable chargers, you don’t a screaming kid in the middle of the store because his electronic ran out of battery.
- Books. We live in NYC so we’re always walking, taking buses and subways so they always bring a book with them or for the little ones bring a coloring book.
Get the Kids Involved in The Shopping.
I know you’re saying what?! But to keep them busy you can ask them to help you. Ask your kids to find something for their cousin or dad, but give them specifics, for example; “I’m looking for a brown sweater for grandpa, or a colorful scarf for your aunt. Kids love being involved and love to help!
Bring Snacks and Drinks
- The night before your shopping day, prepare a bag with purse-sized snack fuel to help you power through the madness. These are snack suggestions that you can
throw in your purse to have handy for screaming children, ravenous
shoppers, and of course, yourself!
GO ORGANICALLY® FRUIT SNACKS are GMO-free, gluten-free, preservative-free
and made with natural flavors and colors from natural sources. Not to
mention, each individual pack is only 70 calories, making them a smart
snacking choice. You don’t want a sugar crazy kid running around the stores.
For the perfect fruity taste to boost your energy, WELCH’S® FRUIT
SNACKS are Fat Free, Gluten Free, contain No Preservatives and
provide 100% of the recommended daily value of Vitamin C and 25% of
Vitamins A and E.
I love VIKI’S GRANOLA! One pack and I’m full! They’re made with 100% ALL NATURAL
ingredients. 1.5oz On-the-go Packs are perfectly portioned and great
to throw in your bag for snacking any time of day!
Don’t Forget the Drinks!
I always bring water with me, but when you’re running around from store to store you’ll need a bit of energy, SPARKLING ICE ESSENCE are Unsweetened, naturally flavored,
zero-calories and no artificial colors or preservatives, they’re refreshing and a great
alternative to soda/energy drinks/or sugary juices.
I also bring some cheese sticks and sometimes I even buy the cartoon-shaped individual snacks my kids love and I never buy, but as a treat to make the holiday shopping trip seem more fun to them I do. It’s worth it for a happy holiday shopping trip!
Be Realistic and Take Breaks
We can shop all day non stop, buy they can’t so plan to take some breaks. Try not to spend more than one hour at the same store, Changing up the scenery for kids of all ages works wonders! Take a walk outside, maybe take a 15 minute break so they can have a snack and continue your shopping. Also, if you start at 9am, take a break at 12 and have a nice lunch even if it’s fast food, kids will love it! And take another break 3 hrs later. It makes the entire shopping experience less tedious. And it might be better if you can plan to do your shopping in two days so you don’t have to go to the stores with the kids for 8 hours! And consider online shopping.
I know kids should learn to behave well without any rewards, but in extreme cases like this one, you might need a little help. Do your kids like to play vide games? Watch YouTube or movies? Plan a fun reward you know your kids will love in exchange for good behavior during your shopping day.
This is probably the most important tip and more difficult to follow when things get crazy, because they might get crazy! If you get stressed, everyone gets stressed. For me it works when my kids see me stress and I tell them how feel, they’re 7 & 9 so they’re not babies anymore and they know how to help me feel better and behave so we can all have a better time.
I hope these Tips to Shop with Kids During The Holidays and avoid going crazy are helpful. Happy Holiday Shopping!