I'm kind of in the mood for a meme today, and I found this one called Things I Love Thursday, so I thought this might be the perfect time to share my newest obsession.
For some odd reason, I've always loved going to new grocery stores. Throughout my childhood, my mom always grocery shopped at the same few chain grocery stores... Cub Foods, Dominick's, and Jewel. Whenever we'd go on vacation, I loved seeing what other grocery stores existed in different parts of the country! I have no idea why this is. I guess when I was a kid, the northwest suburbs were my world, and it was just amazing to me that other people existed every single day and did their grocery shopping in completely different grocery stores!
Every summer we'd go way up north in Wisconsin, to Manitowish Waters. We would do all of our grocery shopping at a small, local grocery store. I was absolutely fascinated by its' existence!
Anyways, when I grew up, I continued to shop at the same old grocery stores that my mom had shopped at when I was a kid. But we recently moved to a different town, and I discovered a special local secret... Mr. Z's grocery store!
Its a lot like the tiny grocery store I used to go to in Manitowish Waters... its been open forever, and hasn't changed much at all in at least the last thirty years or so! The aisles are much narrower than in a regular grocery store, and there's a general small-townish feeling about it.
The first time I took Little Bear, Tigerlily and Pufferfish there, it was because we were on our way to the new house (before we actually lived there) and I needed some baby wipes right away! Its such a small store, I was able to get through the store, grab the baby wipes, and get to the checkout in a matter of minutes.
As we checked out, the cashier asked me if she could give the kids some stickers. I said "of course," thinking that she would give the kids some of those little round stickers that they put on the caps of milk jugs to prove that you've paid for the milk. But the lady walked over to the service desk, and came back with three sheets of very cool, shiny animal stickers! She gave one to each of the kids. It made their day, and turned an ordinarily pain-in-the-butt errand into something really special for them!
After that, I decided that I was going to try to give Mr. Z's my grocery shopping business as much as possible. I appreciate the fact that its a small, non-chain grovery store that has managed to stay open all these years, even while other similar stores have shut down!
So the next time I needed some food, I brought Little Bear, Tigerlily, and Pufferfish to Mr. Z's again. This time, they were delighted to push their own tiny carts around the store (although I had to holler at them fifty million times to slow down and try not to run people over!) This definitely kept them from being bored and whiny during our grocery shopping!
Finally, in the front of the store, I spotted something that reminded me of my own childhood. They have a machine where, for a quarter, a chicken will lay a plastic egg, with a surprise inside it! The chicken makes a loud cackling sound as it lays the egg. I hadn't seen one of those since I was about five years old!
I gave each of the girls a quarter, and they happily bought plastic eggs from the chicken.
I think Mr. Z's has their loyalty as much as it has mine!
I love you, Mr. Z's! Please, please, please don't ever shut down!