Saturday, 25 September 2010

999, 990 to Go

I remember last summer reading about the millionth word to be classified in the English language. There was some excitement prior to its announcement in the press. It was, apparently, 'Web 2.0', though there was controversy over the verification, with serious linguists challenging the count. Words like 'slumdog' and 'jai ho' were also in the running.

But back in my little world, little Gilby has reached his 10th word today - 'cuddle'.

Also on his list and just about in order of acquiring them, 'Mama', 'Dadda', 'arm', 'ball', 'badge', 'bath', 'hiya', 'bubble', and 'duck'. Ok, so the pronunciation of the final consonant isn't always entirely convincing for some of them, but he can make himself me. And yes, 'arm' and 'badge' are slightly odd choices, which I could explain and justify if I needed to.

I'm delighted that 'Mamma' was officially his first word, since Gertie's were 'duck' and, believe it or not, 'tractor', and something approximating 'Mummy' only came many months later, and long after her father had got used happily used to being named by her.

So. Ten down. Just another nine hundred thousand, nine hundred and ninety to go for the little man to learn, then.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Early Career Choice

This is, unbelievably my 100th post.

I feel that it should be on a weighty subject, perhaps with some thoughtful insights about motherhood, or even blogging itself. Alas, no. It is, in fact, about fairies. Sort of.

I've been out playing stoolball at a tournament today, the last game of the season. For anyone not in Surrey, Kent or Sussex, this is a relatively obscure team game that involves wickets and boundaries and was a forerunner to cricket (allegedly). It is mostly just played in the south-east of England.

Gertie was a great spectator and in between games also unwittingly provided most of the entertainment. At one point I asked her, in front of the team, what she would like to be when she grew up. I expected her to say a teacher (like her Mum) or a farmer (she is obsessed by a local farm park, where Brenda, our Wonder from Down Under, works part time). I even half suspected she might say something to do with cars, like her Daddy.

"A fairy," came her immediate, and confident response.

I'm not entirely sure that she's getting helpful career advice at this early stage.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

New Term, New Job and a Marriage Proposal

I have survived the first week of the new term in a new job at a new school and I'm pretty certain that I was at least as nervous than the new Year 7 pupils.

But the benefits are already showing: the biggest one being the fact that the nursery that Gertie and Gilby have been attending since both were just a few months old is actually on site. So when I had the call from nursery on Friday afternoon to say that Gilby needed collecting since he had 'two bad nappies', I was able to pop straight over and see that he was fine. Not in fact, in need of collecting at all, but at least it prevented me from staying on for another hour and gave me the perfect excuse to get away at a sensible time for the start of the weekend.

And I cycled for the first five days, though I did take the car today due to the 'severe weather warning' announced this morning for West Sussex that never actually materialised. Much nicer than the forty minute car journey I used to have, and a little healthier too. Though I have become a figure of fun as the only member of staff to arrive by bicycle in the morning.

And the final piece of news is that Gertie has decided she will marry her grandfather.

We were discusssing marriage and I was explaining that mummy and daddy had got married as they 'love each other' and she came to the obvious conclusion that she would, by the same logic, marry Grumps. When I pointed out that this wasn't really appropriate she settled on her brother as a future spouse. I suggested that she wait a while to make a final decision.