I first saw him on Instagram. Sturdy, supportive, perhaps a little prematurely grey? No matter.
I’m taking about the Aldi Special Buy rocking chair, of course. You might remember when the $199 upholstered rocker first became available in July last year and sold out in minutes.
Bleary-eyed mothers went crazy for it, ready to race through the store in search of a comfortable way to soothe their hungry newborn/teething baby/sick child. It came on sale again on Wednesday, sold out within minutes and then the chairs appeared on Gumtree for $300, $400 and $500!
I hadn’t heard of the Special Buy rocking chair in July, being in the trenches of newborn fatigue, but now it was definitely on my radar.
Let’s be clear on two things:
- I’d gotten through eight months of night feeds, day feeds, cluster feeds, baby-help-me-clear-this-blocked-milk-duct feeds, all without a rocking chair. You can breastfeed without a specific nursing or rocking chair. In fact, in those early newborn days when it feels like the baby is feeding non-stop 24/7 it’s better to be in the living room, amongst the action and with easy access to water bottles, sofas, cushions and Netflix.
But now the baby was older and the overnight feeds were shorter and taking place in his bedroom, these 11pm, 2am, 4am feeds, they were wearing me out, perched in my hard, old, make-do, velvet dining chair and footstool. I needed something more comfortable for us both.
- There are plenty of nursing chairs from which to choose. But for something like this classic grey upholstered beauty pictured in the ALDI catalogue for $199, you’d be looking elsewhere to spend $500 at best, or up to $1700. Factor in wait times of up to five months and you can see why Aldi’s rocking chair was looking better and better.
So it was time.
I phoned a friend who knows all the ins and outs of the Aldi Special Buy. Not only did she offer to go and get me a rocking chair from her local – because divide and conquer is one of the keys to Aldi Special Buy success – she worded me up on what to do, how early to get there and how to get the chair home.
I enlisted the help of my mother-in-law for baby wrangling, I put on my running shoes and tights, just in case it was like those scenes of Boxing Day sales from the 90s, and we lined up at our local Aldi, one hour before the doors opened.
It was here we met the hero of the day, Dean. Dean was first in the queue, we were second (we’d gone to grab a coffee when only the cleaner was there). Dean had done a reconnaissance mission the night before, finding out there were 25 chairs here! We were safe. And – and this is where is heroics really come into play – after learning I was going to call a taxi for 8.40am to deliver the chair home for me, Dean offered to strap it to his ute and deliver it himself!