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No more balloons at Trader Joe's

Trader Joe's will no longer be handing out free balloons to the kids.

Posted Updated
Brazil New Year
Sarah Lindenfeld Hall
It had been a while since I'd been to the neighborhood Trader Joe's. And when we stopped in Sunday morning at the Raleigh store, my five-year-old, as usual, asked for a pink balloon.

She got what may be her last Trader Joe's balloon. According to signs on the register, the chain stopped giving out balloons on Earth Day. The signs mention something about helium and the environment. I was told that they would give out the balloons until their current supply is gone, which is why my daughter got one a few days after Earth Day.

I turned the change into a teachable moment for my daughter. When we came home and she told her dad about the balloon-less future Trader Joe's, she told him that it was to "save the animals."

Me? I'm quietly celebrating. Sure ... balloons are great.

But a balloon after nearly every visit to the grocery store? The disappointment when it flies away? The fear that it might pop and choke the baby? The collection of barely inflated balloons floating near the floor? In my book, that's not so great.

So Trader Joe's, this mom thanks you.

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