Friday, June 27, 2008

Trader Joe - Friend or Foe

So, we went to Trader Joes, after a long absence. There is one directly across from the YMCA, but I have not been brave enough to take all three children in with me after a workout. Yesterday I only had Michael and Natalie with me, so I figured, what the heck, lets give it a whirl. While I love Trader Joes, I had forgoten that Joe is not the friendliest trader for the peanut allergic population. I would say 75% of the items in the store have a warning of some sort for nuts, and those that don't have a nut warning put an egg warning on it just to make me crazy.

So, we were walking down the aisles, and I was trying to remeber the 5 things we actually can purchase from there, and Michael and Natalie were eyeing everything asking if we could get it. Natalie was particluarily upset because she could actually have the sample, and was expecting it to be a giant chocolate suprise. Unfortunatly, it was some sort of unidentifiable sausage that did not meet with her cookie expectations, and she was very clear in letting me know her displeasure.

So, she wanted to buy something she picked out. ANYTHING. So we were walking down the isles, and my two 5 year olds would keep point out and asking :
"can we have this?"
"can we have this?"
"can we have this?".
Of course I kept checking labels, and of course the answer was always
"no, I am sorry, that is not safe".
Natalie thought she had a sure bet when she spotted Trader Joe cheerios, but again I checked the label, and disappointment prevailed....... not safe. It started to remind me of when we went to Ireland to visit Nana, and we found a may contain peanuts label on some flour. Anyways, in my annoyance I realised I was saying
"it is not safe"
louder and louder to my two frustrated children. Then I noticed all these people in the aisle around us were kind of looking at us and whispering to each other. I finally got it (yes, I can be a bit slow), they were trying to figure out why Trader Joe's was so unsafe. Was there another report of contaminated tomatoes????? Was there a new recall they had not heard about?????? What was this important news they had missed that that could be threatening their very health???? As we finally made our way to the register, I have to say I felt a little sad that for us that so much was unsafe. All these other shoppers I had gotten worried (he he he, it is a little funny) have no clue why just walking down the aisle in a market can be so frought with danger. They don't know how lucky they are.


Jennifer B said...

This sounds very familiar. We go through the same exercise too. I think my kids might imagine that I am fibbing that so many foods are "unsafe". We even had to leave a restaurant after being seated and informing everyone we're supposed to about the peanut allergy. Not fun. But I think it is good preparation for the challenges ahead, unfortunately.

Jennifer said...


It is so nice to see others who understand. How funny that your kids think you are lying... mine have not tried that argument yet.