As I walked around Tesco today, pushing an oversized trolley with two bickering toddlers, grabbing anything within reach this post came to mind. The seed for this post was first planted by my lovely friend Lisa and most of it has been sat in my drafts folder for quite some time now. Today though as I muttered “Never again!” repeatedly under my breath I thought I’d best finish it and I take my own advise.
First things first…
Step One: Make a List!
Wandering the aisles thinking “Do I need this?” is not a good way to start! Preparation is key. Without a list, chances are you will return home with nothing but blueberries, the contents of the bread aisles, handfuls of hair in your hands and the tell tale symphony of clinking wine bottles as you try and balance the kids, carry the bags and open the front door all at the same time.
Step Two: Time your shop around nap times.
No-one wants to face a busy supermarket with over tired tots. Let’s face it it’s not going to be an enjoyable experience anyways. A few cranky toddlers in the mix and you can add referee to your CV. You’ll make over exaggerated statements of “Please sit down darling, Mummy doesn’t want you to fall,” to the kids. You’re not really talking to the kids though, your gentle tone is meant for any earwiggers casting you with the ‘Shit Mummy’ brush when what you really want to do is abandon the food shop drag everyone to the car and have take away for dinner!
Step Three: Don’t over think it.
Relax it’ll be fine. It’s the kids meant to have the melt downs not you. Take deep breaths you don’t want to lose your rag at the Childless Numpty parked in the last Parent and Child space. I know, I know hard not too! I don’t think I can say much more about this point, it makes me too mad!
Step Four: Bring Snacks
I have to give my local Tesco in Enniskillen a little shout out here. I think this happens across all Tesco stores but our local one provides free fruit for the kids while you shop. If you have kids who love fruit it’s a complete winner! Keeping little hands and mouths busy saves a lot of shouting and grabbing. Unfortunately today was a rare occurrence, there was no fruit available and as a big fail on my behalf I hadn’t brought back ups. Disaster! Need I say more?
Step Five: Push the trolley down the middle of the aisle.
Now I know this might be an awkward one because those trollies have minds of their own sometimes. But try. Try really hard. No one wants a hefty bill for damages or have to buy the 12 pack of donuts cause tot #1 has grabbed the box from the shelf and tot #2 has tucked in whilst you pondered over which bread had the least carbs.
Step Six: Don’t stop to chat:
Time is limited. A bit like a ticking time bomb. The snacks are not never ending and eventually they will run out. Probably just as you join the five deep queue and there are magazines right in grabbing distance with a free piece of plastic that one kid will wave around for ten minutes and the other will choke on given half a chance.
Step Seven: Under no circumstances route through the toy aisle.
Well you have been warned! If you venture this way you can be sure the kids will think you have signed them up for a new series of Supermarket Sweep and if you manage to leave without having to purchase some random glow in the dark ball or a pot of slim that’s gonna be stuck to your sofa later, please get in touch! Let me know how you managed it!
Step Eight: BE SENSIBLE DO IT ON-LINE!
How do you cope with the food shop? Anything to add?