Food shopping. For some, it’s a headache — the shopping list, selecting the items, loading the cart at checkout, unloading the cart and loading the vehicle in the store parking lot, unloading the vehicle at home and, finally, putting the groceries away.

On the other hand, some enjoy it. … Anyone?

If a child accompanies a parent on a food shopping excursion, he could be happy, cranky or even a tyrant. Maybe he might be an eager helper, and his efforts impress another shopper.

The latter occurred Sunday afternoon (Oct. 15, 2017). My son and I went to Aldi while my daughter attended a dance rehearsal. Those who shop there know that using a cart requires a quarter. Insert the coin into the lock chaining the carts together to release the cart for use.

My son loves to get the cart. Grabbing the quarter I keep handy, he headed to the cart corral, got a cart and pushed it into the store. Once inside, he asked if he could keep track of pricing on my phone’s calculator as we shopped. Yes, I tally as I go along to try and stay within budget.

Jacob happily tapped the numbers as I rattled them off, adding them up and telling me where we stood in the number game. One shopper noticed his efforts and complimented him for helping me and staying occupied. A little compliment, yes, but a “proud mom moment” nonetheless. In addition (no pun intended) to Jacob helping me out, he was actually doing some math. A learning moment, too!

When the clerk announced the total cost of the items purchased, it was actually close to the total we accumulated on the calculator. Yay!

At Aldi, customers pack their own groceries using bags purchased at the store or their own bags. Luckily, I had a little assistant with me. 😉

After we put the bags into the car, Jacob took the cart to the corral to lock it and retrieve the quarter. On Sunday, however, an older couple asked Jacob if they could take his cart since it wasn’t locked. The man handed Jacob his quarter in return.

Shopping trips can be a blessing or a curse with kiddos along. On Sunday, of all days, I had a blessing, and I counted it. 😉