I’m having a long weekend in between jobs, and was looking for things to do in sunny London. Word got out, and the other day Little M messaged me with his mummy’s (and my friend & now ex-colleague) Blackberry to see if I was up for hanging out with him and his mami and experience a day in the life of a toddler. How could I say no?! Keen to meet verybusymama (and Little M of course!) for a coffee and gossip session, I accepted the invite.
Bonding over a dummy
So this morning I got up bright and early, and headed off to leafy West London as other people on the tube were going to work or getting ready to hit the shops for some retail therapy.
First stop of the day, NCT’s Cheeky Monkeys Tea Party in Ravenscourt Park. Now this might be the time to mention that my life is very much one without children, so any interaction with anyone younger than me is a rare thing. So arriving at the Tea Party I didn’t really know what to expect. I was met by a gathering of umpteen yummy mummies and more toddlers & buggies than I could count, all entertained by Amanda of Amanda’s Action Club.
After some singing & dancing (for the first part I decided to take the visitor approach and hang out in the background drinking my first cup of coffee of the day, letting verybusymama & Little M enjoy the dancing and singing. Then, in round two of the entertainment, I was dragged into the action, sitting on the rainbow coloured parachute on the grass, clapping to the kids’ songs courtesy of Amanda’s iPod. My efforts to take part in the activities were recognized by a high five from Little M, so I guess I passed the first test.
Little M and his mami, @verybusymama
By this verybusymama and I were getting quite hungry and Little M was demanding his mid-day nap (which is something I think us grown-ups should have too!), so off we went, walking up Chiswick High Street whilst Little M enjoyed a little shut eye. Spotting the opportunity, his mami and I quickly popped into Cath Kidston (mandatory yummy mummy accessory I’ve been told), before we circled in on a suitable place to lunch. The pizza was tasty, albeit a bit more messy that what I’m used to. Kids do get dirty fast! To show that I had passed the second test, eating out with a toddler, Little M clinked glasses with me in the restaurant, toasting to my success.
Back in the flat, Little M decided to have another attempt to nap (with a hint of crying added), whilst verybusymama and I enjoyed our second cup of java, chatting and having the World Cup on in the background. To my amazement time had flown by, and it was time for me to say my goodbyes and make my way home. However, not before having an attempt at test 3. Witnessing nappy changing. Luckily I didn’t have to change the nappy, but being in the room taught me enough about some of the lesser (to me at least) joys of motherhood. Fresh & ready to go again, Little M and his mami walked with me to the train station before waving bye bye.
Safely at home in my shared flat, with Marlon the Cat fighting for my attention, my day out with a toddler has taught me:
1. Toddlers demand your full attention at all times, unless you enjoy having coffee stains on you carpet
2. Toddlers make a mess in restaurants so choose child friendly ones to avoid angry stares from waiters
3. It is EXHAUSTING taking care of them the whole day! And I only helped out..
4. Tiredness = crying
5. Their little smiles and laughter makes everything alright
6. A toddler’s world is mostly very trouble free, with a lot of eating, sleeping and pooping
And lastly, I realized that I am not ready to be a yummy mummy… but it’s fun to hang out with little ones from time to time.