Monday, August 1, 2016

Our New Saturday: Bye Bye Errands, Hello Fun

Weekends are precious, regardless of your situation. For my family, weekends where we're all together are rare - and even when they do occur, it's almost impossible to reserve them for fun. As my regular readers know, my husband is the Stage Manager for a band that tours for about half the year, and they play shows almost every weekend. When we're lucky enough to have him home on a Saturday, we're usually scrambling to catch up on house projects, bills, and a whole lot of errand running. We knew at the beginning of July that he would be home the last two weekends of the month (and two weekends in a row off for him is like gold), and we decided that we needed to make them count. Even if we just doing something simple, we wanted to make sure we were all together, enjoying ourselves rather than rushing around trying to tend to every task. It was time to prioritize having fun together as a family.

After sitting down and thinking about the tasks that seemed to most cut into our leisure time on Saturdays, we realized that grocery shopping was probably the biggest culprit. The process of loading a toddler and a baby into the car, dragging them to the grocery store, running around the store to get everything on our list while crossing our fingers the kids would behave, standing in line to check out, loading the kids back up, then driving home and bringing the groceries inside is not only incredibly time consuming, it's basically the opposite of fun. We concluded that by somehow removing that big weekend grocery trip, we could plan for an enjoyable activity ("like the park! the park!" as Essley suggested) in its place.

Lucky for me I was given an opportunity to try Google Express, a service about which I'd heard all sorts of great things but hadn't yet used. And it seemed like exactly what we needed to free up our Saturday. I knew Google Express allowed you to shop online for everyday items from your favorite stores and have them quickly delivered, which is super cool in itself, but I didn't realize just how seamless the entire process would be. It took less than two minutes for me to sign up (and that was with a 2.5 year old taking it upon herself to repeatedly climb on and off my lap while I typed) and begin grocery shopping. There were several grocery stores to choose from (I went with Whole Foods, which is one that we frequent), along with hundreds upon hundreds of grocery selections. I used the search bar to easily find the exact items I needed from my list - from organic baby food and toddler snacks to cereal, bread, and pasta to juice and condiments - and was able to purchase them right there on my laptop while I lounged on living room sofa. Pretty great, right? Ultimately it took ten minutes total, even with the constant distraction of a toddler using me as jungle gym, and my grocery shopping was done for the week. I ordered on a Wednesday evening, my groceries arrived on Friday, and suddenly there was a two hour block of time freed up for that Saturday to fulfill Essley's wish to go to the park - as a family. I was stoked.

One of my favorite things about Google Express is that it makes it so your routine household shopping is not only done quickly, but optimized - when you're ordering, you can shop for groceries or whatever household essentials you need from more than one store (I'm talking to you Target and Costco), all in one place, with options for same-day, overnight, or 2-day delivery. (And with a Google Express membership, delivery is not only fast, it's free on all eligible orders! Woot!) Between the time Google Express saves me, the fast shipping, and the fact that shipping is also free, I am officially hooked.

Since I've now gone on and on about how Google Express freed up our Saturday, I clearly have to share more about what we did! After a big family breakfast full of our favorites (sprouted toast with almond butter from our Google Express Whole Foods delivery and eggs from our local farmer's market for Robbie, Essley, and me, and a jar of organic sweet potatoes, also from our delivery, along with some breastmilk for Emmett), we lounged around for a while, packed up some snacks (also from our Google Express delivery, duh) then took a drive to one of our favorite parks. We have a park in our neighborhood but this particular park is special, and one we don't usually have time to visit. We ended up spending two full hours swinging, playing on the slide and jungle gyms, chasing each other around, exploring, and relaxing. When we were driving home Essley informed us that this was "the best day of her whole life." While clearly an exaggeration, it made my heart swell (Robbie's too), and I had to agree with her that it was pretty wonderful. It was like a brand new kind of Saturday. I'm happy and relieved to know that I can count on Google Express to create these periods of free time (and the subsequent joy, man) on a regular basis, by allowing me to get my grocery and household item shopping done in a quick, simple manner that doesn't require me even leaving my house. By scheduling in just a few minutes each week to sit down at my laptop and log into Google Express with my grocery list, I will now be able to carve out more precious moments like this with my family. For that I'm pretty grateful.

If you're looking to simplify your life and free up time for enjoyable activities rather than errands or chores, I can't recommend Google Express highly enough. And here's some great news - you can receive a free 6-month membership (which includes free shipping throughout your membership, a $54 value!) using promo code FREETIME. I have more great news too you guys. Once you use the FREETIME promo code and sign up to be a member, you'll get $15 off your first Google Express order with the referral code F5D7D63LL. You have nothing to lose, so give it a try. You can thank me later.

Who else is a huge fan of Google Express? How do you find ways to free up your Saturdays for fun instead of errands and chores? I'd love to see of photo of your Saturday on social media if you have one (use the hashtags #MyNewSaturday and #GoogleExpress so I can find you!).

Give $15, Get $15: Offer may end at any time/valid until 08/31/2016 while your account is active. Limited to Google Express accounts that received the offer from Google. Each valid referral gets you a $15 courtesy credit when the new users you referred place their first order using your referral code. Alcohol, gift cards, membership costs, and shipping & service fees excluded. Credits you give are subject to these terms. Credits you get are subject to these terms.*

This post is in partnership with Google Express. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible. 



  1. These pictures are all so stinking cute!! Google express sounds awesome, I'm definitely signing up!

  2. Aww...Essley looks like she is having so much fun! And I'm sure you had fun taking pictures of your family :)
    Even though we're just two people grocery shopping takes up a big chunk of my time :-/

  3. I won't lie - I have no toddlers, as we know, and I still find grocery shopping to be the biggest inconvenience in my week. It's rare that Ian has weekends off so the task always falls to one of us to do on our own and whoever it is winds up complaining about it for the rest of the week. Fingers crossed Google Express launches in Canada soon!

  4. This honestly sounds amazing. Thank you for the coupons! I love these adorable pictures of your family too. I hope you have lots more free Saturdays in your future!

  5. I love Emmett's mustache paci, sooo cute! Sounds like a really cool service.

  6. I despise grocery shopping by myself, so I can only image how "fun" it is with 2 little ones in tow!
    This sounds like a wonderful service. Unfortunately since I live in the sticks, it's not available. But I'm glad it freed up a day for you and Robbie to take the kids to the park. Love all the adorable photos :)


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