slice of life

Go Bananas!

My mother never allowed me to eat in the grocery store when I was a kid. Even if we had an item in our shopping cart, she never permitted me to try anything before she paid for it. As a result, I passed on this “You have to buy before you try” mentality to Isabelle. There have been times I’ve purchased a single item before I was finished with grocery shopping — rather than letting her have so much as an animal cracker — so Isabelle would understand, from a young age, that you can’t eat something before you buy it.

Things changed about a year ago when I noticed this sign at our local Giant:


While I am a still firm believer in the “buy before you try” mentality, I’ve allowed Ari to take advantage of the free fruit when we go grocery shopping. In fact, he started signing “more” as soon as we walked into the produce department. At first, I didn’t realize what he wanted more of. (Stupidly, I gave him more kisses, because that was the last thing I did before he signed more. He didn’t want more kisses.)

After shooting in the dark for a minute, I asked him, “Do you want a banana?”

He smiled.

We walked over to the banana display. I grabbed a yellow banana and peeled it for him. But before I gave him the first bite, I said, “This is the sign for banana. Just so you know.”

Happy boy eating a banana!
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38 thoughts on “Go Bananas!

  1. My daughter LOVES bananas too! (Although the part where you gave him kisses as you tried to figure out what he wanted “more” of was the best! I was laughing as soon as you started your sentence with “Stupidly…”!)

  2. My mother had the same rule! And now that I think of it, I think I never encouraged eating before purchasing either. That said, I think most people are the same. I rarely see anyone eating when I grocery shop. Love that store that gives away free fruit. What a great idea! Love the baby photo.

  3. Just the other day I saw a grown man chugging – yes chugging – milk from a carton! In the middle of the aisle! Right there in front of everyone! I thought that bizarre.
    Keep eating those healthy bananas – but please don’t give him a side serving of milk.

  4. So cool that Ari signs! Such a great way to communicate before the words are able to come. It’s funny that your experience was not to eat anything while shopping. Mine was the opposite. I have memories of the chocolate cookies with the cat on the cover and the little white string that connected the box. I would sit in the front of the shopping cart and eat those cookies while we shopped. I like how your grocery store has free produce for kids- such a kind and smart idea.

  5. My first word was more. Something to contemplate there, right? And yes, I try before I buy. Especially grapes.

    Love how you capture the small moments both in words and in photographs.

  6. So stinkin’ sweet! It’s funny what we pass onto our children because of our own parents/upbringing. The moment where you give Ari kisses because he wants more made me chuckle. I can picture and hear it! Love the simplicity of this slice! Thanks for sharing

  7. I’ve noticed this option in several grocery stores in our area. What a great option for parents. One way to make grocery shopping more fun when you have to go with mom. I think they also need napkin dispensers next to the fruit.

  8. Yum! I don’t remember that “no eating” rule, but I’m sure we had such a thing–I know we could not ever eat in the car. My mom’s mantra for me was always, “have an apple” during that after school starving time. Free fruit is a wonderful thing for teaching healthy eating habits.

  9. How cool! I followed your link and watched the video. I had no idea you could learn baby sign language and teach toddlers how to sign! What a great idea – for markets to have a bin with free fruit for kids – wonderful! The “no eating rule” in stores does make good sense, but how can you pass up free fruit – especially a banana, the prefect meal! I am still thinking about Ari – he signs! Incredible!

  10. I love those fruit displays in the grocery store! My kids love it when we go to Costco because of all the free samples–they love trying things in the store. In fact, they get disappointed when there are NOT samples!

  11. So, my grandmother grew up in the Depression era. She grew up on the vegetables from her father’s garden, which, according to her, was the length of the side yard of the house.

    Growing up, I would always see my grandma eating veggies and fruits. When she was at the grocery store, she would spend a lengthy time perusing the fresh produce. One time, I will never forget it, Gram opened up the bag of grapes and started to eat one. I was shocked! She looked at me and goes, “What? Gotta try before you buy!”

    While I wholeheartedly agree with you about the mentality of doing what is right and paying before you sample, your slice reminded me of this fond memory that I have of my unpredictable, sassy grandmother.

  12. “He didn’t want more kisses” = 😂

    Aw! This was so sweet. I will open something I know I’m going to pay for in the grocery store. I don’t count that as stealing. I have also started test driving grapes before committing (just one to make sure they’re not sour), but I still don’t know how I feel about it.

  13. I grew up with the same “Buy before you try” mentality. What a great thing your store is doing to get kids into healthy snacks. (Hopefully they don’t have chips or cookies for free in the next aisle.)

  14. My mom never let us eat anything until we bought it. She told us it was stealing, even to snitch one grape or one cherry. I still go by that rule!

  15. I don’t believe in eating things at the grocery story before you buy it. Our local small grocery store has a kids’ station like this. It is full of healthy fruit that kids can have while you are grocery shopping.

    1. Anytime someone sees Ari eating a banana, I’m sure to tell them, “it’s from the free fruit for kids display.” I guess not eating in the grocery store has been engrained in me too.

  16. I love the humor in the confusion of the signing for more. I love that the store has the fruit for kids. Not only will kids learn to try healthy foods, but they will be busy which will help parents calmly shop for items.

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