In which I consider becoming a smoker

Yesterday was…a day.

It was Friday, so hubby needed a ride home.  His carpooling falls apart on Fridays, which actually works quite well for us.  I save all my errands til Friday, then I take one child and the baby and we run like maniacs trying to get it all done before 5.  Yeah, right.

Yesterday I decided to make it extra fun.  I took all of the children with me, and let them buy Christmas presents for each other while I shopped for groceries.

You can smack me in the forehead now.  Go ahead.  I deserve it.

We must have looked like fools: shoplifting fools.  I had odds and ends wrapped in coats and baby blankets and tucked away in 2 1/2 dozen different hiding places.  No wait, it was just 8, but it’s the same thing: 2, and 6 – that’s a half dozen.  That’s 2 and a 1/2 dozen.

Then I realized that The Boy had knocked over a gallon bottle of handsoap on the seat of cart next to where he was sitting.  And it was opened.  And it was running down into the cart, which was solidly packed like a cup of brown sugar.

And even though my purse was all the way at the bottom (how’s that for planning?) somehow the soap found a way through spaghetti sauce and paper plates and mini butterfingers (how did those get in there?) and into the one open pocket of my purse – the one with the checkbook.

Yeah.  And also onto the baby’s only blanket, which was being used to hide gifts on the bottom of the cart.

Oh, by the way: don’t you love those low-flow faucets in the public restrooms?  The ones that automatically shut off after 6 seconds, even if you’re still using them?  Try rinsing a cup of soap out of a blanket that way.  Let me know how it works out for you.

But we didn’t dwell on it.  I rinsed the blanket as well as I could – which wasn’t very well – then punished WalMart by using handfuls of paper towels to blot the remaining soap out of the blanket as well as I could, and left the bathroom with a firm resolve to keep the blanket away from the baby’s eyes.  I think I also resolved to forget the fact that there was an undetermined amount of softsoap in my purse.  Now that I think about it, I realize that I still haven’t looked.  I bet there’s some really clean stuff in the bottom of my purse.

We finally had to call it quits on the shopping even though several children loudly protested that they weren’t done yet, and we headed to the checkout. I found a promising line with just 2 or 3 carts in front of me and loaded my goods onto the conveyor, taking care to keep bundles of gifts separate and hidden.  As she finished up the last of our 70-something items, she turned to me:

“Now I have to ask you a weird question.”

I assumed she wanted to know if the kids were all mine.  Not a weird question at all, but maybe she felt awkward about asking.  Or maybe she was going to inquire if I had any more merchandise hidden about my person.

“Are you buying cigarettes today?”

OK.  That was weird.  No, I wasn’t buying cigarettes today.

“Because this is the 10-items-and-less aisle unless you’re buying cigarettes.”

Oh.  This is where I apologized profusely, both to the cashier – who was very nice about it because it’s her job to be nice to obtuse idiots – and to the people behind me, who did not look at all nice about it, probably because it wasn’t their job to be nice to obtuse idiots.  Or because they had already dealt with their quota of obtuse idiots for the day.

I probably should have just bought a pack of cigarettes.


  1. simple mama says:

    Again, thank you for a GREAT laugh. Both for me and my hubby. I love it!!!!

  2. Well, at least your purse will be clean!

  3. Mama said there be days like this! LOL! You wrote that perfectly! I can really imagine being there.

  4. Oh My! Mary sent me-so glad she did!

    Reminder-don’t take more than 2 or 3 children shopping at a time!

  5. I know what you mean about taking all the kids shopping when they are all trying to buy presents for each other and trying to hide it all. I have done that one too many times and have been so paranoid about someone stopping me for shoplifting. I feel like there are people watching me up in the ceiling while I hide things I haven’t paid for yet. Crazy! Now you know what not to do next time, right?

  6. So funny [smile].


  7. I was thinking only someone with 9+ kids could truly appreciatet his, but after reading these comments I guess that’s not all together true. Thanks for sharing and for having such a great attitude about it all!

  8. ROFL! Is it wrong to find this so funny? (Here from Mary at Owlhaven)

  9. This was great!! I’m so impressed that you took it all well- a sign that the Holy Spirit is in you.
    Funny, funny, funny. And well told.

  10. I found your site through Owlhaven.

    What a day you had–I apologize for thinking it is hysterical. I am sure when it was happening it wasn’t so funny.

    • Actually it was pretty funny when it was happening. Laughing is much more fun than getting angry, and if you have a blog it’s even easier: just start composing the post in your head.

  11. Someone sent me over here to check out your blog… I am so glad they did… I am sorry but it made me laugh so hard… me too girl… I would have bought a pack of cigarettes… lol

  12. Thanks for sharing. I hate days like this, but it’s nice to remember that we all have them and we’ll make it through:)

  13. I can so relate! Praying tomorrow is a better one for you!

  14. I needed that laugh today. Thank you!

  15. I found you through Pioneer Woman and I can totally understand these days!!

  16. Homemakerang says:

    I AM DYING LAUGHING!!!!!!!!! my husband, in his carnal days long ago, always told me I would be a great smoker as I am pretty anxious… By the grace of God I never tried it! I am sure that was a good thing… I don’t do alcohol either for that same reason 🙂

    anyways… love the line “thats when I punished walmart” I AM DYING!!!!! I get the whole thing as I have been there… it starts out so good, you just want the kids to have a fun memory or something and then…. this 🙂


    reminds me of the day i took my 1st son out for the day for some time alone with mom as he seem to need it. He pulled down a huge shelf of breakables in a snooty store and then when we go to the van i managed to slam his arm in the door!

  17. OK, this was JUST hilarious! I am linking to this.


  18. NO!! Oh goodness, that is way to hilarious Kim! (I know… one persons hilarious is another persons nightmare…) I am just sitting here shaking my head cause I totally understand, sigh

  19. I am so sorry but I couldn’t help but laugh hysterically while reading this. I could picture the whole thing going on. At least you got a nice cashier. I have seen some be SO rude to customers who didn’t realize the item limits. I think I tried to hide a gift one time from my children and it was almost impossible and then the cashier didn’t quite understand when I said to keep that one item low key. LOL.

  20. What a post! Could you have just bought the cigs and then returned ’em? How long was the Customer Service line? LOL

  21. Sounds like a looooong day : )

    But, I have to say that while soap is inconvenient in one’s purse and on one’s baby blanket, it could have been much worse. I won’t share again my morning/all day sickness~meat store/smell~purse story. Long story short. I just threw the purse away.

    Now your purse, on the other hand, will just be nice and clean! How long has it been since you’ve had a spic-n-span purse? : ) Just trying to help you look at the bright side of things : )

    Pass the mini-butterfingers please : )

    In Him,
    Recording the Faithfulness and Provision of God for Future Generations

  22. Oh gosh, I have had more than one experience similiar to that. Almost always at Wal Mart. I have concluded that Wal Mart is evil, LOL.

  23. Hi! I’m the cashier mentioned in the comment above. Let me just say, You Poor Thing! What a day! In our cigarette line, you can have as many items as you want, cigs or no.

    that cracked me up!

  24. I found your site through WFMW and I have to say this is just hilarious. I am going to send the link to a friend who is a cashier. She loves this kind of stuff! lol…

  25. Oh Kim, that sounds a bit nightmarish! (Though it is one of those things that one can ALMOST relish as one is experiencing since one knows it will make a Really Good Story to look back on.)

Don't just think it: say it!

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