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?”
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.”