(Barely) Remembering the Baby Years

I blog for a great many reasons, and one of these is the bank of memories I’ve accrued over the years. It’s no secret that when babies are born (and for the next two, three or seven years) they are teeny tiny sleep thieves, and I am one who needs their eight hours a night to function on full-throttle. And by full-throttle I mean with a fully operational short- and long-term memory.

Which is why I haven’t been able to find my car keys or spell simple words since 2010: sleep-deprived Scrabble is a definite no-go, in case you were wondering.

Baby Hux at 9 months and 1 year old, with a head of hair slightly redder than I ever recall

So now, 7 and a half years into motherhood, one of my favourite activities is to scroll through old memories on my blog. Birth stories, birthday parties, yearly updates…. they’re all there in black, white and technicolour, primed for me to reminisce and feel gooey over, fully working memory not required.

There are so many things I’ve forgotten about my children’s early years that I love to remind myself of as I look back. Just how beautiful they were, for one (like, the most beautiful kids in the world ever, don’t you agree?).

How that, even though they poked each other in the eyes often, they really did love each other from the get-go.

The way they just seemed to smile for the entire duration of their early childhood. And still do, unless they’re poking each other in the eyes.

The absolute incredible amount I loved them even though they made my nipples bleed, my tummy wobble and my eyes permanently tired.

And, if I can be a bit self obsessed for a second here, just how young I looked – I have mermaid hair FFS. You couldn’t pay me to be 25 again but I may well pay my hairdresser to give me that head of long wavy locks again.

Moments after Elfie was born, Elfie at 6 months

I forget just how young I was when the children came along sometimes. Elfie was born when I was 24, basically a teenage mother in a world where nobody I knew was married, let alone with child. It was a scary and confusing period fraught with worry, uncertainty, and many middle of the night Google searches.

Fast forward two years and Hux had arrived: six months later I was on my own. Looking at the photos of my beautiful twosome now I can’t believe I managed solo with such young children.

I usually suffer from the usual mum trick of never being able to give myself enough credit when I’ve done a good job but when I think back to that time I happily say yeah, Alice, you did brilliant things.

Elfie at nine months and her first birthday party in July 2011

In my initial stages of separation from my husband I not only became a single mother but I also became a darned good budgeter. Meal plans, shopping lists, ingenious ways with leftovers: you name it, I did it. Babies are expensive little creatures (especially in relation to their size, eh?) and back then when I was only working part-time and supporting two babies I needed to make sure my money stretched as far as possible.

Which is where the Tesco Baby Event helped out.

Tesco has always been my biggest local supermarket with the best local bargains, and their baby event was (and is) the absolute perfect time to stock up on all the necessities (and there are LOTS) you need to make life with little ones run smoothly.

Starting the 11th January and running til the 29th (so you can spread the cost over a couple of weeks), there’s a plethora of products on offers for you to take advantage of. All your favourite brands such as Pampers, Huggies, Tommie Tippee, Aveeno and Johnson & Johnson are included, and if you shop online there’s a baby zone to make it easy for you to find everything you need.

Through the fog of tiredness I remember spending a long time whiling up and down those aisles during the baby event with a baby Elfie in a little baby seat, stocking up on wipes and nappies, baby bath and next-stage bottle teats, everything I’d need for my next six months of parenting my little humans. Part and parcel of parenthood is just how much stuff you need at any given time, and as the very accurate saying goes: Every Little Helps.

If you have little ones or are expecting soon, firstly congratulations!! and secondly, do mosey on over to your local Tesco or Tesco.com to save some money on those essentials. I might not be able to help you to find your car keys (try the fridge), but hopefully this will help with your weekly budget, leaving you more time and energy to focus on that sleep deprivation. Happy snoozing!

This post was written in collaboration with Tesco’s baby event.

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