Monday, March 31

Talking Helper Monkey for Sale

There was a time in the not-so-distant past when taking the Toddler with me to go grocery shopping was sort of like like taking a rabid spider monkey who had never been out of a 3x3 cage to the grocery store, except I do believe I would have an easier time keeping a monkey happy and under control. When I started my current job, I started having the ability to run to the grocery store during lunch, so I all but eliminated lengthy jaunts through the store with the Toddler in tow. A couple of quick trips during the week was enough for us to get by. Life was good.

Last week I slacked on my quick runs to the store. As a result, we were in extremely desperate need of food. Since I was too busy to take a lunch break at work today, I had to go after work. And? I had to take the Toddler with me. I learned a very valuable lesson very quickly.

She has outgrown the spider monkey phase.

In fact? It was almost fun grocery shopping with her today. She might have even been helpful. Well, if I were incapable of seeing whatever was right in front of my face, she would have been helpful.

"Ook, mommy! Cereal!"

"Need gogur, please!" (That's Toddlerese for "Buy me some damn yogurt and nobody gets hurt.")

"Ders cheese!"


"DORA!" (Y'know, Dora is in EVERY freakin' grocery aisle now. There are Dora raisins, people. Seriously.)

"Ook, bread!"

"Yay! Beans!"

"Ook! Doggy teats!" (My Toddlerese dictionary says that means "Meg and Jasmine have requested that you pretty please with sugar on top buy some dog treats.")

Anyway, about halfway around the store, I began to ponder how much money I could make by renting out her services. There's lots of people in this world with bad vision. They could most certainly benefit from having a helper monkey yelling out food products while they shop. If I were to open up a training center for toddlers to learn to be talking helper monkeys, surely I could end up rich.

Then, of course, the game changed. Instead of shouting out every food item she could find, the Toddler started to say something entirely different. Over. And over. And over.

"You're gonna get it."

I don't know what I'm gonna get, but I think the vision-impaired people of the world might be a bit frightened of the possibilities.

(I know the quality of that photo isn't great, but I still big pink puffy heart it.)

REMINDER: The contest is still running, and the rules changed a bit. Leave a comment on the contest post about anything, and you'll be entered to win. If you're feeling froggy, try and figure out what feelings Alexis mentions in the video, leave your answer in the comments, and win an even better prize. You don't have to be a blogger to win (Jill, I'm talking to you. Seriously.) and you can enter as many times as you want.


  1. ImpostorMom8:18 PM

    could this helper monkey training school be some sort of extended stay overnight came possibly?

    I know where you could get a certain 15 month old client if that were the case.

  2. ImpostorMom8:19 PM

    um, camp. I meant overnight camp. geez, can't type these days

  3. This story reminded me of my grandma who used to say every single name of every single store or restaurant when driving in the car with me!
    By the way, that feelings song is stuck in my head now - thanks for that.

  4. Anonymous8:48 PM

    I wanna know how you got her to sit still. Although we go to the grocery at least four times a week and we know almost everyone there by name, he's a holy terror. Spider monkeys have nothing on my boy. And, he loves to escape and run rampant. Loathe the trip to the grocery. I wish Alexis could learn him a thing or fifteen.

  5. While Sumo Baby is not mobile, yet, he has a surprisingly huge wingspan and will knock/pull anything off the shelf in any store.

    I'm scared of the day he becomes vocal. I am scared he'll be my internal monologue and hurl insults at people in the grocery store. No, I'm not scared that he'll offend people. I'm scared I won't be able to contain my hysterical laughter.

  6. When my toddler is in a good mood, I enjoy time at the store with him, but on other days I love knowing I can go after work without him!

  7. I stopped going to the grocery store-told hubby there was no way I was going with two kids anymore. He had two choices...stay with the kids while I go or go shopping while I stay with the kids. hubby now does all the grocery shopping.....(enter evil laugh!!)

    I love that picture!

  8. I LOVE grocery shopping with the talking or screaming spider monkey! Woo Hoo!!
    Seriously when the hell did Dora infiltrate EVERYTHING!?!

  9. Anonymous9:50 PM

    Seems like I'm not the only one having weird shopping experiences with my kid...just glad Jonathan can't yet say "You're gonna get it." I'm sure he would if he could and a few other choice words.

  10. That is too cute. That picture is adorable, and I love the Toddlereese dictionary translations. Those are spot on.

  11. how funny! and the picture? perfect. She looks so squeezey!

  12. I rarely have to take the kids now that MA is old enough to babysit for short periods of time! Mine never told me what they saw as much as tried to grab it off the shelf!

  13. Yeh, if you don't get everything that she so nicely pointed out, you're gonna get it. For real.

    I just love how politely she asks for things. My kids never grasped that. Congrats on teaching it so well!

  14. just wait till she starts dragging you around to the mall ... but mom, i neeeeeeeeeeeeeeeed abercrombie jeans. i doooooooooo.....

  15. You have a really good business plan here...she sounds really helpful...Ethan is tough in a grocery store at 18-months, maybe that is still the spider-monkey stage. Usually I go to the pasta aisle first and give him a box of something that he can shake and then we sing and he makes "music" with the pasta box while I shop...that usually works for like 10 minutes...

  16. Anonymous2:59 AM

    Can I just exchange her for Freddy whenever I need to go shopping???
    We always end up with a cart full of things we don't even eat... plus screams for candy... and he needs to hug each Dora item he sees, and if we don't let him, WATCH OUT!!! everyone at the store will be looking at our direction...

  17. "You're gonna get it"? I wonder what in the heck she means?

    That picture IS awesome.

  18. Anonymous8:39 AM

    Did you buy the dog treats? Maybe her "you're gonna get it" is a warning of the wrath from the dogs due to no dog treats?

    That is a great picture. Oh. Wait. That's right. They're ALL great pictures :) She's very photogenic!!

    Morgan's really good to take to the store. The only thing she insists upon is wanting to hold every. single. item I put in the cart.

    Watch. I bet I just jinxed myself by saying she's really good.

  19. That is so funny. My 2 yo also used to be a nightmare in the grocery store. And suddenly, over the last year, she has literally done a 180 and is SO easy. Even fun!

    But yeah, the marketing of the character stuff is out. of. control. My kids are into Disney princesses. They make princess everything, even tissue. Crazy.

  20. Hi!

    I think it's great that you take Alexis with you to be your "helper" while you shop! It may take a little longer and require a little more patience, but it's so worth it! I always took my boys with me, to the grocery store, the bank, restaurants, etc., because it taught them how to behave in public places, it's good for them! My SIL would always leave my niece at home with her hubby, saying that it was just too hard to shop with her. As a result, she was the most ill-mannered child in a store you have ever seen. You're doing a great job, and Alexis is a precious little girl!


  21. All those blind people would have to speak Toddlerese.

  22. The title of this killed me!

    I loathe taking the children to the grocery store, so I know the urge to sell these helper monkeys. Good luck on finding a taker - I think the market may be saturated with them at the moment.

  23. What do you mean you will NEVER shake Connor's hand? Isn't that a bit rude? What if you were on a sinking ship and he reached down WITH HIS MOUSE GERM hand to save you? Would you pull a Titanic and drown?

    Jeesh, woman!!


  24. I can NOT take kids to the store anymore!! Everytime I do.. I spend at least $50 more!!

  25. Ugh I hate taking Bean to the store.
    He wants EVERYTHING! And god forbid I don't oblige. It takes us forever.
    I like it best when Bud calls me and is like "where are you?" I always say IN HELL!
    But I love how they have to point out food to us.

  26. That picture is adorable! You've been tagged!

  27. It really is out of control how many products Dora is on. Ridiculous!
    And how bad is it, that I have more fun shopping with my 3 year old than my 12 year old who should be a big help but decides to act like a heathen everytime we step foot in the store.

  28. i would rent her just so she could sit and sing to me.

  29. Anonymous11:49 AM

    Aw, what a sweet story. Can I borrow her for my next shopping trip?

  30. For sure that "You're going to get it" spoken with the wrong tone could make a blind person pee him/herself. Obviously the training still needs to be tweaked.

    I just let Little Man eat his way through the store. A pint of raspberries through the produce aisle, a Little Debbie brownie in the bread aisle, an Elmo juice in the juice aisle, a popsicle in the frozen aisle and by the time he gets in the car, he's a happy sticky mess and I just pray he doesn't throw up on the way home.

  31. Ok, I'll do ND. Send me an email . . . lawschoolhotmama at yahoo . . .

  32. This was my favorite: "Yay! Beans!"

    I love Alexis. Great photo!

  33. I gotta say, for me the grocery store is still a team effort with Husband and I. Good to know there is light at the end of the tunnel:)

  34. Dora raisins. My kids missed those. Shhhh... don't tell.

    I could use a helper monkey. "Ook yady, dere's a yot of tuff you needa be cyeaning wight now. But you're all bwoggy obsessed."

    Great pic of your little bean.

  35. My spider monkey always points and chants when we wheel by the Dora Yoplait yogurt. I think of you and Alexis every time :)

    My toddler is still rabid at the store at times :(

  36. Hmmm...they become helpful. Who knew? Right now he just screams, well, yells actually. People come by and think it is "cute" right now. That'll change. No doubt about it . . .

    Dora raisins??? I just had the Disney ones! They were awesome. So much better than Sunmaid. Are you buying this? Please don't . . .

  37. If it has Dora or Sponge Bob on it Aidan wants me to buy it no matter what kind of food it is or even if he'll eat it or not. :o)

  38. I'm definately going to watch the video and find her "feelings"! :) It's been a crazy week, but i've got 2 days to figure it out! I should be very good at this by now! :)

  39. My daughter still insists on sitting in the cart. The part designed for much smaller children.

  40. Anonymous1:32 PM

    Good work. Rachel has to bribe her 2yr old with chicken nuggets.

  41. Please, I'm willing to hire spider monkey, but only if she can drive to and from the store, and put my groceries away afterwards. Much like folding laundry, I hate putting away groceries.

  42. I think I need to rent her services... can she tell me what the fine print says?

  43. soooo did you ever find out what you were gonna get? :)

    Gavin used to be my special grocery announcer, too. Now he just gets the little cart at Harris Teeter and shops with me, though he does still shout out most dairy products for me, in case I didn't already have all of them on my list (you would NOT believe how much milk, cheese, and 'no-gurt we go through in my's a wonder any of us can poop).

  44. Great business idea! LOL! I'm sure you would get LOTS of trainees -- especially if you made it a sleep-away camp as suggested. ;o)

    Dora, Sponge Bob, and others are so popular I wonder why they don't put their pictures on stuff like cans of spinach and peas?? It couldn't hurt!!

    I found this video on youtube the other day. I think it's a fantastic way to stop a tantrum. Wish I'd thought of it!