Sometimes a girl just has to accept she’s living on statutory maternity pay…and even that won’t last forever. So today when the Aldi supermarket one day baby event was launched, the baby and I were out of the house by 7.30 and battling the South London traffic to Old Kent Road. You can tell I’m not an experienced Mum, because in my head, I envisioned queues of Mums, waiting for the doors to open, all rushing in to get the £19 Hauck travel cot I wanted. (That’s how things used to be in the pre-baby days when I would go to fashion sales, etc, so surely that’s how things would be at the baby sale.)
As it happened, I was the first one in the parking lot (managed to get the parent/child parking spot right outside the front door) and there was just me and one other woman, at 7.45 in the morning, waiting for the doors of Aldi to open. Like bums, waiting to get in to buy the cheap off-brand booze, but instead we were after baby-grows and nappies.
What a geek.
And why was I the first one there? Because I’m still a newbie at this Mum thing. Because most normal, sensible Mums with little babies barely think about getting out of the house (or pyjamas) before noontime, and those that do – its only because they’re taking their older children to school. But I still hold the belief that I will not be defeated by Mum-dom. I will live life on a normal(ish) schedule…even if it means standing on the Old Kent Road at 7.45am with my baby still in her pyjamas, tucked into her BabyBjorn, and me, looking pretty ok-ish in a white shirt and skinny jeans, but secretly I hadn’t even taken a shower yet.
So, moving on, as I pushed my trolley through the non-existant crowds of fellow shoppers, I got the first of the Hauck travel cots, three packs of giant muslins, a hooded towel and a Tommy Tippee sippy cup. I mean, there was actually plenty of great stuff there – and all quite cheap…but then, that’s the problem with Aldi. You go in to buy your polish jam and battery hen eggs and come out with a discount chainsaw instead.
However, for the budget minded organic shopper, there are a few good buys at Aldi. You can get a few organic veg basics: potatoes, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower and onions, a few seasonal organic fruits, organic milk, as well as a few random dry goods throughout the store. Today, for instance, there were Kallo puffed buckwheat and quinoa cakes (like rice cakes). You kind of have to go in with an open mind about what you want to buy, but you can come out with your shopping bag full of 100% British organic foods at around 25% less than you would pay at Sainsburys or Tesco.
All good news for a Mum who is about to start baby led weaning and isn’t too keen on the Annabel Karmel ‘all sugar, all the time’ approach to feeding baby. (I may feel differently after steamed broccoli has been rejected for the 50th time, and I promise, I’ll admit it if that’s the case.)
I should also say that I was really pleased to see packs of Bambino Mio cloth nappies for sale there today. At our house we use cloth nappies (resorting to biodegradable disposables for outings, travel and nighttime only) and although we don’t use Bambino Mio, I’m pleased that they’re becoming more mainstream and accessible to people on a budget. (Lets face it, the Old Kent Road isn’t the cheapest property on the Monopoly board for no reason).
So, overall, it was a good shopping trip. We have a travel cot, so we won’t have to make our baby sleep in a milk crate or dog pen when we go on holiday to Cornwall, later this summer. We’ve got some adorable elephant themed giant muslins, at 1/5th of the price of the ones at Jojo Maman Bebe. And best of all, the baby fell asleep in the car on the way home, so after transferring her to the nursery when we got home, I’ve had the whole morning to myself!