We’ve all been there – in the middle of Target and suddenly you are embroiled in Tantrum 2010. Sure, sure the magazines and learned professionals can give all the advice they want on how to handle this situation. Such as leave the cart there, and leave with your child immediately. There are times and places when you should probably do just that. But then there are those other times, the times when you actually need the items in that cart and the thought of making another trip out later to the store (still with both kids, because the magic babysitting fairy doesn’t seem to be returning your calls) just makes your stomach turn. What do you do then?

Let’s imagine me at say…..JoAnn’s fabrics. Now, in a perfect world my kids sit in the cart well behaved and let me choose all the fabric I can dream up***ahhhh, that was fun. Now, let’s switch back to reality.

My kids are in the cart, being good, and other customers are commenting on how beautiful my girls are and asking them their names.

5 minutes later the whining starts: Mommmmmm, when are we going to be done? Mom, can I get out of the cart?

Mom: Sure

Child: Yippeee!

Now a 5 minute game of hide and seek commences, because let’s face it. What would you do if you were a child in a fabric store???

Once the other customers start to get annoyed, and I am tired of getting ‘the look’, I make my older child get back in the cart.

Baby: Starting to cry
Child: Mom, I’m hungry

At this point I am trying not to get frazzled, trying to still use my nice calm voice showing everyone in the store that in fact, I am a good mother. How much fabric do I have in my cart? Probably none still…

I rummage through my bag desperately looking for any scrape of food I might have, and start throwing cheerios at them.

I have another 5 minutes now where I can browse through fabric. When I start to hear crunching everywhere I step, I realize that my kids have indeed missed their mouths on numerous occasions, and the cheerios are all over the floor of the aisle I was in. Yikes, quick! Move to another aisle, and no more cheerios.

Baby is now starting to try to climb out of the cart, while the older child is starting to grab the fabrics we are passing. And me? I am grabbing whatever I can get my hands on in a desperate attempt to get this torture session done with.

At this point I come up with a clever deal, which will distract my older child for at least another 10 minutes…SHE CAN CHOOSE HER VERY OWN FABRIC!!! Now this has to be handled delicately, as we very well might just end up with a yard of fleece character fabric. I can try to steer her in the right direction, but must be discreet otherwise she will discovery my secret plot and all will be lost!

As for baby? I have grabbed something plastic and large from the
store aisle and she is now happily playing the throw and pick up game (Baby throws, Mommy picks up).

So I manage to get the older child in the cottons, and there are more characters…drat, foiled again! Then she sees it, Strawberry Shortcake! Ok, ok, regroup. I can do this, pajama pants…

Child: But Mommy, I want a shirt!

I end up walking out of the store with said fabric, as well as some of the others that I was able to grab along the way. Buttons? Nope. Zippers? Nope. Interfacing, thread? Nope. Nope. But two happy children, a Mommy who survived, and some NEW fabric! Yeah!!!

Bribery? Nahhhhh, let’s call it taking one for the team. And the shirt actually did come out kind of cute if I do say so myself…

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Jess Abbott the Sewing Rabbit is the founder and creative director behind the me sew crazy blog, as well as, 5 & 10 Designs, GNO Events, and co-editor of STYLO. She resides in Virginia Beach with her husband and 3 children.
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  1. says

    Too funny. Is it weird that Babes has already mastered the fine art of throwing a tantrum the minute my cart is half-way full? You know – too full to just let all that hard work of distraction go to waste, but not full enough that you can manage without a second trip the next day?

    On another note, I plan to desperately avoid all character prints as well. We’ll see how well that goes…

    Adorable shirt.

  2. says

    Shirt is sooo cute. Luckily connor has “fed up times” where he will be happy in a store for about 15 minutes…. i know to get what i NEED first and browse after that 15 minutes. After that he wants out of the cart, but he is just fine as long as he is being held. He doesn’t enjoy joann’s either, but he does love to “talk” to all the ladies (such a little flirt). and I have a magic treat (organic veggie puffs from target) that will cease all crying with a single munch. We’ll see how long that lasts!

  3. says

    Thank You SEW much for linking up to our new party **Real Moms, Real Laughs**, we really appreciate it.

    I have so been in that same situation so many times, he he. I’d say the fabric store, or clothes shopping is my absolutely most nightmarish place to bring the kiddos,,, I get so frazzled, I either end up throwing a bunch of useless things in the basket, or after spending hours trying to shop, I end up leaving empty handed.

    Gotta love the kiddos though, lol.


    Bella :)

  4. says

    Thanks for linking up at Real Moms, Real Laughs! I love this post! Definitely been there… and I’ve only left my cart in the store once. Not because my kids are so well behaved but because I NEED those groceries!

    Favorite line? “Yikes, quick! Move to another aisle, and no more cheerios.” You crack me up!

  5. says

  6. says

    Hello! I’m new to your blog (LOVE IT!!). Found it from Tatertots & Jello. I was browsing last night and I was wondering where you got this pattern for the shirt? Thanks – and keep up the good work – I can definitely relate as mom to two wonderful girls!

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