Fussy is hosting a great little carnival. She is encouraging others to post about things for which they are thankful.

I thought I'd join in. I guess that means I shouldn't post a picture of my kitchen table covered in Play-Doh. I also probably shouldn't label that same picture with the title "The Bane of My Existence." No, no, that won't do.

Instead let's talk about the grocery store. Isn't great when a trip goes smoothly? I had such an experience this morning. The only little glitch was that it seemed that we kept getting in the way of the same man. The fact that I was pushing a stroller and pulling a cart meant that it was challenging for us not to be in the way. Each time I got in his way, I apologized. I warned Ann to be careful too.

It really came as no surprise to me that we found ourselves in the same check-out line. He was right behind us. I had just asked Ann to say something to the cashier. She did a good job, but had her mouth full of crackers while she said it. I told Ann she did a great job and then apologized to the cashier for her full mouth. It is quite possible a few crumbs made their way out of Ann's mouth as she spoke. Hopefully they didn't land on the cashier. Yuck.

"Stop apologizing," said the man in line behind us.

"What?" I asked.

"Stop apologizing. You've apologized through the whole store. You're doing fine," he reassured.

"We've all been there," added the cashier while looking in the direction of my three little ones.

I started thinking about it. They were right. I was apologizing, but my kids had been great. They did exactly what I asked them to do the entire time we were shopping. I realized that my apologizing for things that weren't misbehavior was undermining my words which said they were doing a good job.

Sure, there is a time and a place for apologizing for disturbing the whole store with a toddler's tantrum. It might also be good to say sorry when your toddler throws something and narrowly misses the person behind you. Not, of course, that I would know anything about that.

But the way I was saying sorry today may eventually come across as an apology that my children are even taking up space in a public place. I am most definitely not sorry for that.

So, today, I'm grateful for the kind man and woman at the grocery store. I'm grateful they acknowledged that taking kiddos to the store is not an easy job. I'm also grateful that they made me think about making sure my words match my thoughts. I'm proud of my kiddos and am more than happy to call them mine.

It's the Play-Doh I could do without.

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