There are two pairs of tiny, mud-covered wellies in the hallway by our front door. And if you are aged two or three, you will know that that is a sign of a day well spent: muddy wellies suggest explorations, rain-soaked adventures, (Ralph's curls gone wild), and, of course, the time-honoured joy of jumping up and down in muddy puddles.
Yesterday was Mother's Day and, do you know what? Call me Hallmark but I felt the love. It started with both children on our bed in the morning, Ralph asking "Can you let the cat in?" and Scout squeezing me around the neck, saying, "Ahh my Mummy. I love you more than me." You could have stopped the day right there and it would have been complete for me.
We had brunch with a friend at Bebida on Smith Street and, alongside the best eggs I've had in a longggg time, they also managed to give me the best Mother's Day brunch that money could buy, being a really great (grown-up!) atmosphere, without any member of staff skipping a beat that we had brought two small children with us. They were super friendly, super helpful, super cool and the food was super good. This, combined with the fact that both children were preternaturally well-behaved, made it a stress free and thoroughly enjoyable meal. We followed up with a scoop each at Gelato Messina, and the kids didn't even make a mess of their clothes. Because, Mother's Day magic!
As I carried Ralph back along Smith Street, I whispered into his curls, "I love you." "Can you say it louder?" he asked. "I love you!" I announced, in my big voice. "I love you Mummy," said Ralph. "I love you I love you I LOVE YOU!" A lump formed in my throat. (And then he continued, "I love that red car, I love that light, I love that wall." But I will take my wins where I find them).
Scout woke first from her afternoon nap, so she and I went out together to CERES (more jumping up and down in muddy puddles) to buy some plants for our garden, as well as a particularly lovely monstera deliciosa for inside the house. Because apparently, on Mother's Day you actually TURN INTO your mother. I swear I could feel my mother approving of my choice of Mother's Day present, even all the way from Poland, where she and my father are adventuring right now. (I miss my mum! Happy Mother's Day, Mum!) Scout carefully selected a fair-trade Bolga Basket woven out of elephant grass by mothers in Ghana, which will serve as a 'pot' for the monstera in my bedroom.
When we got home, the children and I spent an hour playing "babies." This is a great game to play when you're tired because, as a baby, you get to lie down on the floor and not do particularly much. In this iteration of the game, both Ralph and I were the babies, and Scout was our mother. It was bedtime, and she gave us toys to cuddle in bed. But we were (upon instruction) 'naughty,' and insisted on playing instead of sleeping. If you are a particularly wily mother (ahem), you can learn to work the system of this game. For example, crying "Wah, wah! Mummy this baby can't sleep because she needs a foot massage!"
Let's just say that Scout is a very attentive mummy.
At dinner Mr B and I decanted a lovely bottle of red wine and lit candles in the dining room, with a bad/hilarious/great record from the 1960s on the old Blaupunkt, featuring popular classical pieces from Mozart and Beethoven and other similar composers, set alongside some wonderfully tacky drum beats and guitar 'fillers'.
And that brings us up to my right now (your last night). I am sitting on the couch, watching some renovation show or other on the TV. Both children and Mr B are upstairs, probably snoring. Our cat Ruby is beside me on the couch, purring and also keeping my feet warm. Soon she and I will join everyone else in the family in slumber. Mother's Day 2016, over and out.
ps. Me and my mum, a very long time ago...
Image credit: Sarah Boyle, licensed for unlimited use under Creative Commons