It was an inset day for the younger two yesterday so first day back after half term today. We never seem to do very much during the half term holidays, I'll sometimes speak to other mums afterwards and they seem to have crammed in so many activities, I wonder when they found time to sleep. We do a lot of sleeping in the holidays. Then when we do finally surface there is no guarantee that any of us will bother getting dressed until after lunch. We mostly seem to mooch about, chat a bit, read, listen to music - not my choice of music but at least constant Starz TV keeps me down with the kids (although I do have to confess it was some time before I realised it was Hey Porsche and nothing to do with the Merchant of Venice!)
I do sometimes cook with them, although these days I'm often relegated to washer upper and Lorna is head chef. The drawback of this being I don't get to lick out the bowl. Mostly though I let them do their own thing rather than structure activities for them. I think children need to sometimes be bored so they can figure out ways to entertain themselves rather than relying on somebody else to always provide the entertainment. Plus there is something a bit soul destroying about taking half an hour to set up a craft activity only for Maggie to finish it in ten minutes leaving me with half an hour's worth of tidying up.
Worse than the messy short-lived craft activities though is the "playing with small toy figures" game. It is the game I most try to avoid but sometimes there is no escape. So it was one day last week, shortly after we'd set up the spring table I blogged about recently actually. I should have been more aware that having the box of various small figures out was asking for trouble but perhaps still recovering from a virus had dulled my wits. I agreed to play a short game, pleading a need to cook the dinner soon as a means to facilitating an escape when it all became too much. "Right then, the game is called 'Mary Mary Can't You See?'" I asked who Mary was but was met with a withering look, "there is no Mary. It's just the name of the game." I had to choose my toys, most of which were then confiscated as being "wrong". Eventually I was allowed a car, crab, cat, alien from Toy Story and Dora the Explorer's mum. I then had to think up acceptable things for each toy to say to her choices (lemur, cat, dinosaur, duck and another Dora's mum if you're wondering.) Several minutes of nonsensical conversation followed in which I had to admire a cat's medals, make the alien exercise and pretend Dora's mum was learning to fly, whilst trying to sneak on to Twitter to allow me to keep at least a tenuous grasp on reality. Eventually her cat appeared to turn to the dark side, stabbed my crab through the eye and needed to be jailed in the toy box. I took the opportunity to return the rest of the toys to the box and retire to the kitchen to cook dinner (read my book).
The toys are now packed safely in their box, high on a shelf until the next time I can't avoid the siren call of "please play with my aminals (sic) with me Mummy."
I never did find out who Mary was.