From the archives: My Daughter, My Pride and Joy
Nothing like an 18 day break to recharge the ole batteries! Okay, I’m totally lying, for whatever reason my brain is screaming and my fingers aren’t listening. In a desperate attempt to look for inspiration I decided to see what I’d been writing about on this day last year and the year before. This time of year is a bit of a minefield but I took the chance and came up with this gem from 2010.
It’s even more funny because V had a sleepover and playdate with her cousins on Wednesday night/Thursday. She was scheduled for a bath Wednesday night and the sleepover was a bit of a surprise so she wasn’t packed and prepared (we’d gone over for dinner and left her behind – woo!), so I’m fairly sure my sister’s neighbours would have noticed very little change in her rag-tag-ness.
This morning I dropped one relatively clean child off at nursery school. I mean, she may have had a bit of jam behind her ears from breakfast, but she was wearing clean clothes, her hair was mostly tamed, and her nose was wiped as we went in the door. Who or what I picked up this afternoon was barely recognizable as the same child. They’ve been teaching her age group to eat without bibs. Today’s lunch was soup, I could tell without checking the menu.
The school play-yard is in its spring transition phase, where the lawn is trying to grow, and 50 or so children are doing their best to beat that fool idea out of its head. The end result is that the yard looks like a bored elephant’s pen. Apparently V decided that her contribution to this endeavour would be to impersonate a steamroller. The teachers were kind enough to note that perhaps I should bring in a spare pair of clothes in case she got ‘really dirty’. Like she didn’t quite achieve that mark today.
Luckily we had to go directly from the school to my sister’s for dinner, so I didn’t have the opportunity to do much other than try to remove the dirt/snot trails from her face. No wardrobe change, no spit and polish, no removing the layers of dirt from under her nails. My sister is the proud owner of her own 3 and 1 year olds, so the state of V didn’t phase her terribly. So much so that she decided we should go to the park after dinner. Right, because I want to be bringing my little tornado out in public.
In her ever-loving wisdom my sis also decided that the children would need a snack at the park and that apples were the ideal candidate for the job. Toddler-sized pieces were hacked and dumped into a Tupperware and we were off.
Do you have any idea what children do at a park with a play structure? They play in the sand. They pick up mittfuls of it, they pretend to eat it, they scoop it up and fling it at each other…and in the case of my daughter, they roll in it. Do you know the attraction quotient between sand and sticky apple juice coated children? Approximately a million.
Once she had finished her approximation of a sand candle V decided that the empty wading pool was a good place to let off steam…and her shoes. Clearly the feet were missing out on the dirt bonanza. She started running around the pool like a little dervish, attracting the other children in the park to join her. I believe there were eventually 6 children running around and an equivalent number of parents watching (and I know I wasn’t alone in secretly waiting for the inevitable collision…trusty video camera at the ready). There was much merriment and yelling and I didn’t pay that close attention to it until my sister pointed out that my little darling was running around, yelling, ‘I ATE THE POO!’ over and over again.
My only consolations are that I will probably never see these people again, and that my sister will be known amongst her neighbours as the one that invited ‘that child’ over.