Grocery shopping with kids doesn't have to be torture. These tips will help you and your crew get in and out faster without losing your minds.


Shopping with a screaming toddler in tow is enough to make any mom throw up her hands and order take-out for the foreseeable future. But, don't abandon the grocery store just yet. With these tips shopping will go more smoothly and your kid might just learn something in the process.

1. Park smart. Don't automatically look for a parking spot closest to the entrance. Instead choose a space near the cart corrals. You can load your kids up by the car and avoid abandoning your cart when you're finished shopping.

2. Let your child make her own "shopping list" at home with a few items. If she's older, she can use this as an opportunity to work on her spelling, think A-P-P-L-E-S. If she's younger, she can draw pictures. At the store let her be responsible for reading items on her list.

3. Play I-Spy. Whether your little one is spying "something green" or spinach across the produce department, encourage your kids to look around and be engaged with their surroundings.

4. Don't shop on an empty stomach. This goes for both of you! Nothing is worse than a hungry toddler meltdown (right?), and if you shop while you're famished you'll be more likely to make unplanned (and unhealthy) purchases.

5. Set up expectations in advance. Before you go into the supermarket tell your child that you won't be buying any treats. But she can choose one new fruit to try or a box of granola bars for snack time.

6. Skip the samples. Unless you want to hear your child begging, pleading, and crying for whatever it is you just tried.