1. Parent & Child Parking Spaces - Nothing irritates me more than seeing someone that clearly doesn't have a child with them, using a parent and child space. Or those who have "children" that are clearly young adults and definitely don't require the extra room to swing open the door. There is a point to those spaces, not for laziness cos they're close to the entrance. But for extra space to get your child and all of their paraphernalia out safely. Please don't use the space if you don't need it, you have no idea how much help that extra few feet is.
2. Lack of Parent & Child Spaces - Sorry to keep harping on, but they're a huge help. The Trafford Centre is the main culprit I have in mind. The shopping centre is brilliant if you're looking for somewhere child friendly. It's warm, loops around in a circle so you can't get lost, plenty of spots to sit and feed and great changing facilitates. But there are about 3 parent and child spaces (okay that's a little bit of an exaggeration, but there aren't many!). So you have to be super lucky or get there before the centre opens to guarantee you bag a space. Sort it out Manchester.
3. Trolleys - Another shop-related pet peeve, baby trolleys that require £1 to release them. Like I haven't already got my hands full, juggling Violet, the nappy bag, probably a few toys and a blanket. I have to then put everything (not Violet) on the floor to rummage through my purse to get some change. And who even carries real life money anymore? Most places thankfully don't charge, but when I rock up to the likes of Mothercare and need to pay for a trolley, I swiftly turn around.
4. Baby Changing Facilitates - A couple of things: firstly, why would you not provide a toilet in a baby change? How am I supposed to have a wee in a regular old cubicle with a pram? It's all fine and dandy if she's in the sling but even then I have to make two trips, one to get V changed then another so I can use the loo. Nine times out of ten, you have no choice but to use the disabled toilet (which I hate doing) but it's either that or showing my lady bits to everyone in the bathroom. Secondly, how hard is it to keep a baby change clean and tidy? Don't get me wrong, some of the facilities we've used are amazingly clean and really accommodating. But other are down-right awful. I've witnessed dirty changing tables, nappy bins that are overflowing and stink, small pokey changing rooms that you struggle to get a pram in and I must add lack of ventilation has a lot to answer for. The last thing you want to do with your precious newborn is pop it down on a questionably stained mat in the tiny half-hearted attempt at a changing room. A quick wipe round and an air freshener could do the world of good.
5. Comments from Other People - Yes, stranger in the John Lewis lift last week, I'm talking to you. I don't need your opinion on whether my baby is too hot or too cold. Or you think she looks like she might need feeding soon. Or "that's a tired cry". Trust me, I'm well aware of my baby's needs and you thrusting your opinion in my direction is not helping in any way. What I do appreciate is the people that offer to give me a hand when I'm struggling to get Violet off the train. Or those that offer up a seat on a busy tram. And even those people that happily chat with me or V, even if it's just to ask how old she is or to try and get her to give a little smile. Sometimes it's nice to talk to a random stranger on the bus, but it is never nice to have to explain your parenting choices to someone you've never met.
And now that's off my chest, I'm off to Manchester, praying for a parent and child space and hoping nobody talks to me!