That’s when time starts to feel like a melting Salvador Dali clock.
Then there are the milestones and changes to routine. I remember the baby groups I joined as a new mum. I thought some of those friendships would go on forever. One or two did, but not the ones I expected. When I look back, I’m surprised at how casually I let some of these things go, but on each occasion I was driven by what Peaches and I each enjoyed and wanted to do.
The biggest milestone so far is happening today. Peaches is having her last day with her fabulous childminder, Lisa. Let me count the reasons that I love Lisa:
- She talks to the children about the ‘garden of good manners’ and puts their picture in the garden when they share, say please and thank you, are helpful and so on.
- She takes photos of Peaches throughout the day and writes a short story of Peaches’ day in a day book. These are lovely memory books that give me an insight into what goes on when I’m at work.
- She has lovely, engaging older children who play with the little ones.
- She takes Peaches to playgroups and playdates. So Peaches can always point out the other childminders’ ‘kiddywinks’ when we see them around town or in the supermarket.
- She calls groups of children ‘kiddywinks’.
- She’s encouraged and supported Peaches in being outgoing and confident.
- She’s helped Peaches understand how children develop from being babes in arms, to walking, talking and running. Peaches probably knows more about babies than I do. Which is handy, because I’m pregnant.
So from next week, Peaches will go to the fabulous nursery for four days a week. She’s been begging for this for some time. She loves Lisa too, but she wants to spend more time with children (and girls) of her own age group. Since she’ll be starting school in September, this gives her six months of a more school like atmosphere.
That pregnancy thang I mentioned? That will hopefully happen in September too. It’s all part of my master plan to be on maternity leave while Peaches starts reception class. They have a very fractured start to schooling here. For the first two or three weeks it’ll be a day here, an afternoon there. All of which seemed to be entirely incompatible with having an employer.
Perhaps I could have planned to take holiday to deal with it. I just thought having another baby would be more fun. And let’s not forget: I love maternity leave.