Elizabeth's love of Publix knows no bounds. She would choose a trip to Publix over one to the playground, zoo, or pool any day of the week.
If I plan a Publix run after the kids go to bed, I have to be careful not to mention that plan out loud, or I risk major drama, tears, and heartfelt pleas to come too from Elizabeth.
She assumes that I love Publix as much as she does, as you can see from the "All About Mommy" book that she made for me at school for Mother's Day:
[NOTE: I do not own blue fancy pants.]
Elizabeth is a really fun Publix companion. Her enthusiasm about being at Publix is contagious. And while she certainly has her moments, she actually does not do a whole lot of begging for kiddie junk food while we are there. She is just thrilled to be there. I think the worst we ever came home with was Chocolate Lucky Charms. David took one look at the box when we got home and said "hey, let's not buy any more Chocolate Lucky Charms." Who can really argue with him? But other than that, we pretty much stay on-list while we are a Publix.
She does have a couple of minor Publix quirks. She wants to pick out and put the cantaloupe in the cart by herself. Just the cantaloupe. Why she had to zone in on one of the heavier fruits is beyond me. Yes, it's better than if she decided that she had to load her own watermelons, but not as good as if she had chosen apples. She invariably picks a cantaloupe at the bottom of the pile, so we've caused a couple of cantaloupe avalanches at Publix. She also wants to push the buttons on the keypad in the checkout line, but she won't just push the buttons I tell her to push. "I want to pick whichever buttons I pick," she says. I now let her pick whichever buttons she picks as long as I am not in the active process of paying for the groceries.
So cantaloupe thing and keypad thing aside, the only real problem with taking Elizabeth to Publix is that it means that I have to push around The Beast:
Or The Bench Beast:
(Jacob joined us on this particular Publix run despite the fact that he does not quite get the magic of Publix in the way that Elizabeth does.)
For those of you who do not have small kids, I know that when you see us coming with The Beast you have the same thoughts that you have when you see us in your boarding gate at the airport. And I don't blame you a bit. Because The Beast and The Bench Beast do not maneuver well. Even a simple turn requires a 10 foot turning radius, or a 5-point turn. Stopping and going is always an adventure with The Beast (Bench Beast is even worse). The chances are about 50/50 that I will graze you with The Beast if I get anywhere near you, and those odds go up even higher if I am distracted by pleas for a Diego Gogurt. If you see us coming, you should save yourself and quickly move away from us -- the cucumbers can wait. Because I can't necessarily stop The Beast just because I want to stop it, or turn The Beast just because I need to turn, or move in the direction I want to go just because I want to go there. No, I am pretty much in Publix with a shopping cart and a three year old that have minds of their own. You, on the other hand, are nimble as a ballerina with your regular, non-Beast shopping cart. You should use that to your advantage.
While it is definitely easier to go to Publix by myself, I've got to admit that taking Elizabeth with me makes it feel like more of a party. It is hard to feel annoyed about yet ANOTHER trip to the grocery store when Elizabeth, upon learning of a trip to Publix, gasps and says "JACOB, guess WHAT?????? I get to go to PUBLIX!!!!!" And I do love those BOGO specials.