This week, four generations of girls had a family day out!
My 89 year old Grandma, mum, me and a nearly 3 year old Isla! Who knew that a shopping trip could be so much fun and full of daft comments being dropped!
With all the joys of being a non driver, I need a lift!
My poor mum drives 12 miles to pick me and Isla up, then does a further 20 miles to go and collect my Grandma (pretty much past her own house) and then a final 14 miles to the retail park we wanted to visit!
So after her 90 minutes in the car, we reach our destination and have ourselves a restorative coffee. Isla is happy as she gets a chocolate lolly, my Grandma is happy because she gets a hot chocolate and mum and I are grateful as the caffeine is flowing!
Who gets to push the trolley?!
So when you go to the shops with an 89 year old, a shopping trolley can often be used in place of a walker. But how do you resolve the fight between a toddler and said 89 year old as to who is allowed to push the trolley?! Who knew that would become a battle!
At this point we recognised that the trip would be much more effective if Isla and I took off to do what we needed to do and left mum and Grandma to their own devices. Isla would then choose this time to get herself into a stand off in the middle of New Look with a 2 year old, neither one of them being prepared to move to allow the other through!
I recognise at this point, that we may be on a limited time frame and hurry to get the bits I want and we make it out with no damages to pay for! so we then head back to meet the other pair who are still only in the first shop we went to! By the point we reach them they are at the till queueing to pay.
I can’t work out who pays less attention, Isla decides to use the queue barrier as her own personal pretend shop so I can pay for her shopping while my Grandma doesn’t realise that her trolley is in the way of anyone trying to get through (bad design M&S). So I find myself having to ask both of them to move every time someone needs to get to a till. Inevitably it seemed to be the busiest point of the day!
We have been at the retail park for no more than an hour and think it would be a good time to leave!
So the woman who has spent 90 minutes driving to get us all there, gets nothing for herself and less than an hour at the shops!
Tootling back down the A1 towards my Grandma’s home, Isla (newly potty trained) decides that needs a wee! Anyone with a newly potty trained toddler probably understands my anguish that she doesn’t understand the odea of holding it yet!
So we bump up the first kerb we find to let the child do her business while the traffic thunders by.
Yup seriously, is is not even 12noon yet! So we head out for some lunch, Grandma isn’t too hungry so just orders some soup while Isla is starved and wants chicken and chips. Isla decides it is too hot so doesn’t start eating meanwhile Grandma now has an appetite and starts nicking chicken nuggets off Isla’s plate! Amazingly all remains calm and everyone gets fed.
Then we have to have an age of back and forth as to whether Isla is coming with me to the office briefly or staying with my mum. She keeps letting one of us walk off then changes her mind, makes a final decision to come with me so mum disappears only for me to remember that she has the potty bag and we cannot go anywhere without this! So she comes to meet us with it only for Isla to decide that it would be better to leave me to go on my own!
So we finally reach home time, Grandma decides it is her nap time so the rest of us head for the car. Isla (who gave up daytime naps months ago) decides she can take a doze on the way home, meanwhile poor mum is getting to the end of her 3 hours worth of driving for the day!
You can’t ever get this time back!
For those of you that don’t know me, my Grandma moved to be closer to the family 7 months ago. So she has gone from the beautiful Chester (3 hours away) to St Neots (30 minutes from mine). I feel so lucky to still have my Grandma in my life and to be close enough to her to be able to have these lovely days out.
Some of our extended family, don’t seem to realise how lucky we are to still have our Nanny as a part of our lives at nearly 90 and, sadly for them, they will probably only realise when it is too late to change this. Meanwhile I am so happy that we can still have this time and keep building memories which will last a lifetime. #lovemygrandma