I would rather go through child birth again than take two, under 5's to do a supermarket shop on a Saturday. FACT!
Ok, hands up I'll admit to being incredibly disorganised and not ordering an online delivery, so in theory it was self inflicted. This weekend my worst nightmare became my reality. We had zero food in the cupboard so a shop had to be done.
With a big deep breath and a positive 'can do' attitude we drove to the supermarket. A tantrum over a trolley kicked off before we'd even got inside and my 'can do' attitude 'did one' and buggered off.
With such good intentions at the start I gave them a nice, healthy pear to keep them quiet. Oh how we giggled as we had a trolley race down the aisle. With a request for more food as they were still hungry I came over all smug and organic and picked up a bag of carrot batons. I attempted to rip the bag open in the corner but it split right down the middle and we got rained on by about 3 million carrot batons. 'Clean up on aisle 2, clean up on aisle 2.'
Next, the dairy aisle. Now if you'd heard the 4 year old you'd think we were in the middle of Antartica. "It's soooooo cold." "I can't walk, my legs are freezing up." Arms wrapped around herself the loud shivering noises weren't annoying in the slightest.....
We'd only been in the supermarket 5 minutes but it felt like 3 hours. The girls were getting bored and it wasn't long before they started winding each other up and I had started talking through gritted teeth. I had no choice. Plan B had to come in to play.
Plan B in a nutshell was SUGAR. Chocolate buttons sorted the 4 year old out but the youngest has allergies so she got to eat some inedible cardboard thing from the 'free from' aisle! We were back on track......well more off road....."mummy I need a poo" "can't you wait 10 minutes?" "No it's poking out." Toilet stop!
One pear, buttons and a poo in we're off again. I see fellow kindred spirits as we painfully crawl up and down each aisle.
"Put that back"
"No you can't have magazine"
"No you don't need another plastic set of keys and a Peppa phone"
"Look where you're going"
"Stop running off"
I then did a major fail and went down the crisp aisle. A multi bag of crisps (I know, bad mother) pillow fight kicks off and quite frankly it's carnage. I genuinely want to cry. An elderly man pulls his wife close to him like we're some kind of 'tooled up' yobs and shakes his head in disgust. I'm blocking the aisle with a non blinking, thunder face, one hand on my hip and the other pointing to the shelves. I dare anyone to say anything to me as I'm about to BLOW! After a staring out competition the eldest finally backed down and with the speed of a snail put back all the crisps.
The youngest started to suck on the bars of the trolley but I let it go as she's quiet, that is until she wants to get out and run around like her big sister. I consider it for a second but if she gets out I've had it! Sure enough the mother of all melt downs begins. People look up to see who's been murdered and it's at that moment I realise....I'm done! I look at the practically empty trolley and admit defeat. They've won.
I get to the till and the cheeriest checkout girl greets me with "hello, how are you today?" "Not bad thanks (I lie), how are......DON'T TOUCH THE CONVEYOR BELT WHEN IT'S MOVING......sorry about that." I then realise I've forgotten THE most important thing.
"I just need to grab something" and as Miss Cheery chats to the kids I run with the grace and speed of a gazelle to the parents medicinal aisle and grab one (ok 3 if we're being honest) bottles of prosecco and leg it back to the tills.
She scans through the contents of our weekly shop: prosecco, cheese, milk, pears, chocolate wrappers and crisps, yep all the essentials a family need for a good healthy diet! I know she's thinking 'Jeremy Kyle' candidate but given the circumstances I actually think it's quite an achievement.
I push the trolley out with the 4 year old's bottom lip dragging on the floor. She's still moaning that she didn't get a magazine. The 1 year old is still licking the bacteria off the trolley and I go over in my head what went wrong and I seriously don't know. I did the planning, I had the list and I had the food decoys but it all accelerated in to THE most stressful day of my life.
I throw the shopping in the boot and I sit and turn the engine on and quietly sob. It's right at that very moment that I make a promise to myself to never, ever put myself through that again. I will get my shit together and do a weekly online shop......I will........ I'll make time ...........yep that's what I'll do............... absobloodylutely.
Now does anyone have any ideas of how I can make a weeks worth of family meals out of cheese, milk, pears and crisps?