Dear grocery cashiers and bag checkers all across America,
I realize that you aren't getting rich at your job (and the sight of my coupons just annoyed the bejeezes out of you), nor are you generally receiving mountains of praise to keep your spirits up but please, please, please, please, PLEASE for the love of all things good and holy DON'T take it out on my shopping cart. Instead, try taking pride in a job well done, no matter how mundane it may seem. I really detest digging my produce out from under heavy bottles of juice, bleach, and vinegar, not to mention the plethora of canned foods piled high atop my fresh fruit. I wasn't planning to make wine with my grapes or pasta sauce with my tomatoes, thank you very much.
And when I take the time to sort 'like' things on the conveyor belt, it's not to make my job of unloading groceries at home any easier, it's to help YOU load my shopping cart without me being forced to make and bake banana bread from the baby food that's left on the bottom as soon as I get home. I don't have a baby anymore. I don't need freshly prepared baby food. All of my family members now have all of their teeth (well, almost ;)). I mean, I love banana bread and strawberry jam as much as the next person and I appreciate your kindness in eliminating one of the steps in either of those recipes, but not only did I plan other uses for my bananas and strawberries that don't require pulverization, I don't have the time to prepare a dozen homemade fruit and/or omelet dishes after a 3 hour visit to your store.
You are young so you probably haven't experienced this yet, but did you realize that children are time and energy-suckers? Not a flattering description of them, I know, but nonetheless true. They will just suck you dry of all your time and energy. Now, they are the most precious gifts on this earth and time spent with them is never wasted, but I don't care who you are...even Martha Stewart wouldn't want to spend her entire evening in the kitchen baking homemade entrees after a full-day alone with 3 incredibly energetic kids. (I don't know how many times I've wished I could bottle that up and sell it! We'd be beyond wealthy!) My kids are great and we enjoy spending time together. But, still...They. suck. you. dry!
That's to say nothing of the money I just spent purchasing all that produce...even taking the time to hand select most of it, only to have it squished beyond recognition once it is transferred from the buggy I packed to the buggy you packed. Those grapes were not cheap ya know, and if they make it to my home in one piece, the whole bag will be devoured in less than 24 hours. I guarantee you that! I'd still like to have those 24 hours I just purchased though, brief as they may be.
So, please be courteous enough to at least attempt to not flatten my bread or make sawdust out of my chips. (What can I possibly do with a bag of sawdust chips besides tilt them up to my mouth and eat them like some kind of animal? Top a casserole? Sure, but there again, I have to make one first.) If you will do me the honor of being intentional in the packing of my groceries, I will be sure to thank you so that you know your effort is not in vain. I believe I speak for all exhausted mothers out there when I say, your consideration is greatly appreciated!
Stephanie, Founder of Moms for the M.O.B. (Mission: Orderly Bagging)