One Yummy Mummy’s guide to shopping in the Square tantrum free!
You know how it goes! You head to the Square for a bit of retail therapy and end up with a two-year-old in full blown tantrum mode (we’ve all been there).
Those passing by are giving you the death stare, tutting under their breath (as if they haven’t been there before).
Shopping with a toddler is hard work. Gone are the days when you could swan around the shops for the day, sipping coffee in between. Nowadays this venture needs a plan, one with military precision.
1 Look ahead (when munchkins is gone to bed): If you are planning on clothes shopping then the best thing to do is get online the night before and give yourself a heads up, Debenhams, Newlook, River Island, H&M and more all have deadly websites.
If online shopping isn’t for you, make a list of what you might like to try on the next day. Now your mission has a goal!
2 Food: Always pack snacks and drinks. Things like crackers, breadsticks, rice cakes and raisins are great little lifesavers – something for smallie to graze on throughout the mission.
3 Sleep: There are two types of toddlers; buggy sleepers and non buggy sleepers! If your little angel (some of the time!) is a buggy sleeper then go at nap time and let them sleep in the buggy (you’ll get at least an hour there).
If they are not a buggy sleeper let them sleep first and then head out. Shopping and a tired rugrat do not mix so you will need tricks up your sleeve to keep them busy!
4 Tricks up your sleeve: Always pack a bag of tricks. Cheap toys that you won’t mind if they get lost, or a loved cuddly toy (tie this to the buggy in case it gets lost) always work as a distraction
And if they have a tablet bring it. Maybe not a popular choice, but I’m all for whatever works and will always limit screen time for missions like this. Using a tablet sparingly that way makes it more of a novelty.
5 Time: Always be conscious of the time. Tots get fed up being strapped in the buggy for anything longer than an hour. Praise them and tell them they’re doing a great job, and if you feel things are about to kick off have a bribe in reserve.
6 Bribery (it has its place): I usually go with, “if you’re a good girl/boy for mammy we will have a play in the Cheeky Monkeys or the Oopsadaisy playground. Both are free so use them for ammunition (10/20 mins in either will work, and always factor this into your mission time).
7 Comfort: If munchkin is sitting for any length of time make sure they’re comfortable. Do a nappy change. I know it sounds obvious but sometimes I can forget, and if you have no nappies then no worries, you can pick up a Cheeky Monkey nappy bag from the customer service desk for €2 in the Square. The handy bag contains a nappy, a scented nappy bag and baby wipes.
8 Triggers: If you’ve had a successful look around a few shops, but sense the mood could change in the buggy (from gismo to gremlin) have a pit stop. You could probably do with one yourself!
9 Pit stop: The Streat do a great kids meal for a fiver, with a pizza, juice and an ice cream included. Their coffee is perfect for mammy too, and gives you a boost ahead of the final mission stage.
10 I want: “Mammy I want whatever expensive looking useless trinket that’s in eye shot”. Distraction is the secret weapon of choice here. The perfect distraction is number six (bribery) and number nine (a pit stop). If these are used up then a five minute stint at the fish tank on Level 2 works wonders.
For more from One Yummy Mummy keep an eye on Echo.ie over the coming weeks and check out her brilliant blog HERE