Thank you, David and Tara for sharing this milestone in Otto's life!
He was always interested in shopping, and paid attention to what aisles things were in at Berkeley Bowl and Trader Joe's. A few years back we started having him go off to get items, then meet us back at the cart. We've always had an agreement that when he helped with grocery shopping he could pick out one thing for himself, which he loves doing.
Otto began asking how old he'd need to be to go grocery shopping on his own. We said we'd need to think about it. One day Tara and he stopped at the Berkeley Bowl info desk to ask if they had any limits to how young unaccompanied shoppers could be, and they said no. We talked about it and decided that when Otto turned ten, we'd give it a try.
So a few days after Otto's birthday we all walked over, and Tara and I got some coffee and relaxed in the cafe while Otto took the grocery list and got a cart. We gave him one of our phones so he could call when he was done. It worked out fine. I went in to pay when I got his call and took a couple pictures to commemorate the event. Otto has done the shopping a few times since, and continues helping out when we go together.