November 29, 2012

Tips for Thrifting with Kids

A couple weeks ago, I had a question emailed to me asking about thrifting and how to find the best goodies. I have to admit, I'm no expert in this area and it certainly complicates the whole trip when I have two little companions with me while I'm admiring the fine china aisle. Despite my kids and their penchant for destruction, I've developed a few tactics that seem to work well and I thought I would share them with all of you for your thrifting or antiquing adventures!

1. Avoid naptime like the plague. The last thing you want is to be the mom with a kid smashing plates in the china aisle (trust me, I've been there). Pick a time that your kids are well-rested.

2. Sanitize. Bring sanitary wipes and put your kids directly into the shopping cart or stroller to keep them corralled in one location.

3. Buy stock in Cheerios. After sanitizing (see number two), keep your kids occupied with snacks. Crackers, Cheerios, or squeezable snack packs are always a winner at our house.

4. Plan your attack. Think about what you're searching for in the store and make that the priority. Looking for a pair of new boots? Start in the shoes section; if your kid has a meltdown by the time you make it over to the clothes, you can leave quickly knowing that you accomplished your main goal.

5. Embrace the ick. Remember that anything you bring home can be cleaned. If that's clothes for you, they can be washed. If it's a new truck for the toddler, remind him not to stick it in his mouth while in the store. And then promptly douse them both in hot water and soap when you get home. It's all part of the experience... just go with it!

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