By Contributor Amanda Howard (@littlenancygifts)
You know those moments where you run through a scenario in your head and see a version of events where it works out. It's totally fine. The 'it'll be right' type outcome... But then there's the reality.
Case in point - me, doing a shop with three kids. A determined, independent but obedient four year old, he's my champion, I don't need to worry about him. Then there's the 23 month old runner, who you guessed it, runs. He also smacks, says no a lot and can't use words to express himself other than 'no' which equals lots of frustration. Yeah, you know what I'm talking about. It's developmental, he'll grow out of it but at the moment that's what I'm dealing with. And what grocery shop would be complete with out the four month old! Woohoo!! Hectic grocery shopping, come on down!
Now, normally this is my routine - park in the underground car park for the pram parks (thank you Coles), go to the nearest trolley bay with a double seater, load the two boys up and put baby Marley in the Elki baby carrier - she has a snooze, the boys get a bribe chocolate for behaving themselves (don't judge me) and everybody wins.
But today I decided hey, why not spice things up and get the newborn/seat trolley for the four month old and 23 month old (because mr four does like to scoot around pushing the mini trolleys plus it will give my back a break....)
First problem. Getting from the underground car park to the Coles entrance to actually get my kids into the newborn/ seat trolley as they are not kept in the underground carpark - I hold the hand of the 23 month old while carrying the four month old and instructing the four year old to hold onto my handbag tightly or ELSE. I'm like 'ultra stern' mum in carparks. Take no chances.
The 23 month old's tantrum is quickly avoided due to the excitement of an escalator.... Okay, part one accomplished. Then problem two. How do I actually put the two children into the trolley when one needs to be carried and the other can't be let go, in fear of running into car park traffic or getting lost in a supermarket? Ain't no body got time for that.
As I stood there trying to figure out how the hell I was going to do this, I also instantly decided that this was a bad and stressful idea and I'm never doing it again.
What I did was create a wall with my four year old and my legs to trap the 23 month old between the trolley bay and our bodies to keep him from running (which he tried, by the way, and I definitely remember saying the words 'block him! Block him!').
I put the baby into the newborn seat then picked up the wriggling toddler and put him in his seat, securing them both. Phew. Made it. And with only a teeny bit of sweat.
Then off I went to get the breast pads that I had attended Coles for.