Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Who Needs a Playroom When There's Target?

I've always kind of thought of Target as my own personal Mommy playland, but my friend Christy and I recently learned that Target can be the perfect spot for a zany afternoon playdate!

While you finish laughing at me, I should explain that we made the decision while we were high on sodium from Chick-fil-a waffle fries, and it couldn't have been that bad because we went two days in a row with four children in tow. Christy is my New York Girls' Trip partner in crime--nobody is as fun to hang with as her!

Target is usually my refuge, my little Nirvana in the midst of preschooler chaos. I like to go by myself and just wander down the aisles of shoes and decorative plates. But Christy and I discovered that it also has its merits as a playdate spot. Let's review the benefits, shall we?

  • Caffeine (Starbucks!)
  • Toys (albeit packaged ones)
  • Ambient music (it beats the heck out of Dora and Diego in the background)
  • No clean up!!
  • Carts with restraining devices for out of control youngsters
  • Shopping. Need I say more?

Photo opp!

My best and expert advice for a playdate shop?

Caravaning is a must! Two carts make for more room to stash your loot (and kids).

Yeah, it got a little crazy (Natalie looks like she has been possessed by a shopping demon, but that's what I look like when I spot a good deal too), but we hit the Dollar Spot, the Valentine's clearance, and the clothes before anyone had a meltdown. We dangled the promise of a stop in the toy section over their heads for as long as possible.

And then Christy had to run out to her car for a minute, and I got a taste of what life would be like if I had two sets of twins, ages 5 and 3. And that life would be cah-razy. This blog would be called Jack Daniels: A Mommy's Solution to Staying Sane.

So I did my best to entertain the 4 younguns in the toy section, and I kept losing Christy's little boy, Ree, because he wanted to look at dinosaurs and the girls just wanted to have fun (fu-un) because that's what girls do, right?

The only time I had them all together:
They were entranced by this nasty dragon toy that talked and burped. It did not come home with us.

The girls put on dramatic musical and dance performances (with props!) that carried on for several aisles. I am quite sure America's Got Talent will be contacting me soon:

And I had to video them dancing in the princess aisle because not only was it humorous that Natalie tried to sing along to a song from Tangled that she'd only heard once 3 months ago in the theater, but Brianna punched the machine, and Michaela Byrd just dances along without a care in the world.

Of course, there were several "Can I please oh please have this BarbieCarBabyPrincessDollhousePuppy?!" but I ignored those and mostly focused on making sure Ree didn't run off to the hardware section to play with the drills.

And then our good fun was cut short because Christy came back and while we were looking for clearanced soaps, she realized that it was much later than we thought and she had to run home with the kids to meet her middle schooler at the bus stop.

Which is why we went back with Michaela Byrd and Ree the next day during preschool hours.

Because there's not much that's better than good bargains except for good friends!

{Have you ever had an unconventional playdate/Girls Get Together?}


  1. Aah...I love a good shopping adventure! :) I wish we had a Target. We only have 'ole Wally World. :(

  2. HAHAHAHAHA! I'm cracking up over here. Good thing you'll hopefully never have to worry about having to have Jack Daniels in you blog title. The video is so cute & the kiddies looked like they had so much fun! :-) Target playdates could just become the "new thing" :-)

  3. oh that was so funny! love what your blog title would be with two sets of twins!! never had a playdate at Target but my kids love Target and Walmart because of the toy section-i also dangle it in front of them as long as i can! if you ask my son where he wants to go in the morning, he'll say Walmart :)

  4. That video was HILARIOUS!! SO cute - I loved watching Natalie try to sing along while Michaela Byrd danced whether the music was going or not! Cute cute!

  5. Too funny but it is a great idea. I love me some Target.

  6. What a fun playdate! Gotta love Target, right?! Still laughing about the Jack Daniels title :)
    Have a wonderful day, Amanda!

  7. Bwhahaha, that video was too funny! Target = love <3

  8. My favorite thing about Target and kiddos is the free cookie from the bakery! They are perfect for bribing at least a little bit of good behavior out of my kids:)

  9. I have totally used Target as a playroom...and Joanns..and Dollar Tree...Publix!

    Love your pictures!

  10. Target is my ultimate happy place and the perfect place for a mommy meet up with the kiddos! We have a Chick Fil A right outside of our local Target and we normally combine lunch with an afternoon trip to Target. You just can't beat it. Perfect Day!!!! So glad you had a fun and crazy day!

  11. Ohhh so that was yall yesterday in Target! haha no I am kidding! We love going to target to play!! I guess I could bump into yall one day because we live in Va too!

  12. Just the title made me laugh! My son is always asking to go to Target, and insists on that giant behemoth shopping cart that is a beast to steer! Love it.

  13. We go to Target all the time to "play"!! H LOVES it, and asks to go all the time. I can almost always think of something I need/want from there, so it works out when she's a bit stir-crazy!

  14. Oh man. I have four and feel a headache coming on just thinking about having them all running around Target for fun! :)

  15. I love that last photo of the dancing. Talk about a priceless moment. Sometimes I want to start a dance party in the aisles of Target, too. Mine usually has something to do with the homewares section. Lamps! Bedding! Towels! Clearance!

  16. I think you’re on to something here! Target is a happy place for adults why not kiddos too? Now I’m trying to think of other fun play date/ adult play dates places. Humm……


  17. When I lived on Whidbey Island and the power went out in our house. I had a toddler that needed to get out of the house. Since there was no indoor playground (Something I've never understood since it's only nice enough to play at an outside one 2 months out of the year!) We resorted to the toy aisle of Wal Mart since the nearest Target was 45 minutes away. I TOTALLY understand this post :)

  18. I've totally done that! My two little ones wanted to watch the video of the girls over and over! HA! So funny!

    When I was in charge of Box Tops for our school, E and I would go up to the school, meet with a few friends in the teacher's workroom to "count/package box tops" which translated into us talking and the kids playing in the floor for a few hours.

  19. I am laughing so hard right now because I've been there. My twins are 8 now but my friend and I used to take my three girls and her kids to Pottery Barn Kids. We'd sit on the pretty beds and chit chat while they played FOREVER. I think they were in elementary school before they realized that it was a store and not a fancy doll house.

  20. So adorable. I love Natalie's singing voice (:
    Your girls remind me so much of what I was like when I was little! I would have screamed the "I WANT THIS" line, though. Charming (:


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