February 26, 2012

Our First Shopping Trip

My secret shopper
A quick trip Babies 'R Us and Ross.

It sounded so simple, but the agenda for my first solo trip with baby boy was more intimidating than I was willing to admit.

I was set on proving to myself and my family that Bryson and I were ready to roll. Running errands would be a breeze. I packed him up in the carseat, loaded up the ERGObaby carrier and an incredibly overpacked diaper bag considering the occasion, and threw in the few items we'd be returning. Off we went.

In the hour and change that followed, I learned some important lessons:

1. Practice with your baby carrier of choice before trying to use it in public. I had never used the ERGObaby. I'll also confess that I haven't used it since. Not because it's not comfy or stylish; it's both. I just found it incredibly awkward to maneuver on this particular afternoon. Granted, a lot of the awkwardness had to do with the fact that it was raining, so I was trying to put him in the carrier while unfortunately crammed in the back seat of our tiny car. Even worse, the parking lot was full, so people were waiting for my spot.

All I could do was laugh to (at) myself and think, "You have no idea how far away from the keys-in-ignition phase we are, buddy. Carry on."

It's safe to say that the first time I used the Baby Bjorn (which is technically Jeremy's, since Baby Carlos in The Hangover apparently made them en vogue for dudes) was in the privacy of our own home. It's also safe to say that I have become a lot more patient with slow pokes in the parking lot since that day.

2. Dress for the weather. If it's unusually hot, don't wear layers. If it's supposed to rain, don't wear flip-flops. They're slippery, and that's unsafe. And potentially embarrassing. If it's cold, well...it's never cold here.

My mistake on this particular day was the decision to wear a sweater over my usual tank top selection. (Just because I was actually getting out of the house, and it made me feel more...put-together. HA!) I've joked for years that our kid would be doomed, since Jeremy and I could both break a sweat sitting in a igloo.

My genetic predictions were correct. It doesn't take much for our little guy to get warm. A warm, rainy day, a rather insulated baby carrier, and a warm-blooded baby nuzzled up to a mama with a penchant for glistening led to a sticky situation all around. Still, he never once complained. He fell right asleep just as soon as we were up and going.

What. a. champ. Nevertheless, next time, we will check the forecast and dress accordingly.

3. Check your wallet before you leave the store. Once we made our returns and browsed the aisles of BRU for good measure, we loaded back up in the car and headed to Ross to make some more returns. I was returning some items that I had originally purchased in a nesting frenzy in October, on what happened to be the day before Bryson was born.

His room had been almost finished for weeks. All I needed was some pizzazz to add the one blank wall and it would be done, so off to Ross I went! I didn't end up liking what I bought, hence this return trip, about two months later. [Sidenote: The blank wall is still blank and still driving me nuts. Ah well.]

When it came time to actually make the return, the cashier asked for my license. I opened up my wallet, and it wasn't there. I have a sweaty baby strapped to my sweaty self, and no driver's license to be found. Clearly, I had left it at BRU.

Oy. This was not part of my maximum-efficiency baby errand plan! I was so over the loading and unloading process at that point that I Googled the phone number, called BRU, and asked a) if my license was there, and b) if someone could just meet me outside with it. I didn't know if I had left it on the counter or if the lady forgot to hand it back to me.

Didn't matter. What mattered is that I realized it was missing while I was still in the area, a kind soul in a purple polo was willing to walk it out to me, and Bryson was sleeping comfortably in the air-conditioned backseat.

It didn't go quite as a I'd planned, but what ever does - especially when you have a tiny new person involved? We may have had a few kinks to work out, but considering the crucial lessons learned, I'd call this first shopping trip a success.






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