As I type this post, James is being ‘bedded-in’ at his new nursery, before transitioning to full-time childcare next week. This means that I currently have 3 WHOLE hours in which I am neither at work nor in charge of a toddler. Unprecedented!
The possibilities of what I could do with these 3 precious hours are so endless that I am having a minor meltdown. I’ve already wasted one hour of the precious by shopping for lunch and footling on the internet… and now I am footling some more. HELP ME.
Anyway, seeing as I am here, I shall ask a question. Where on earth do toddlers get their crazy accents from? James’s speaking voice flips daily between such a wide range of brogues and twangs that I might have to enrol him at RADA.
He’s been doing it from the very start, back when he first began to repeat words back at me. I would say “Teddy” and he would reply “Tedddeeeeee” in the style of someone from the Welsh valleys.
Then along came nursery and he started coming home sounding like a cross between Peggy Mitchell and Frank Spencer, with a new favourite refrain of “Oh dear” (pronounced “Ahhh dyahhh!”)
A few weeks later this was replaced by a lilting Scottish brogue, with constant utterances of “oh no”, in the style of Lorraine Kelly “Oooooh Nooooooo!”
This week’s favourite is to declare “All gone!” when he has had enough food. This is done in the vocal style of a Californian Valley girl – “aaaahhhhhlll gaaaahhhhhn!” and accompanied by the over-expressive hand-gestures of an angsty Jewish New Yorker.
Two things that add to the general comedic effect are that:
- a) he repeats pretty much everything I say, regardless of its meaning or appropriateness
- b) he can’t say his ‘h’s
This has led to the sudden onset of “ello darling!” when I walk into the room.
Being an irresponsible teacher, I am full of gleeful encouragement for any such anachronisms that emerge. (Having taught him to say “James Masters”, he is now right on the verge of being able to say “James Flockywock Horrorpants Masters”. Hooray!)
What else is new? Well – all I can say is that this boy is made of mischief. Mischief, slugs and snails (and snot, obviously). But seriously… I can’t leave him anywhere for any time at all. No drawer or cupboard is safe from opening. No item is exempt from being climbed upon en route to an unsafe place. I see that he is well occupied, playing on a rug with a jigsaw and I turn my back for 30 seconds. Then I return to find him sitting cross-legged in a high, rickety place, holding scissors that I didn’t even know were there. EVERY TIME.
Well, that’s probably all I have time for, so I shall finish by sharing a selection of festive pics from a lovely December….