Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Potty Mouth

Bemusingly, this post is nothing to do with toilet training. I know, I know, I’m letting you down. We skyped the spud’s Aunt and Uncle in Canada the other day and halfway through the call he displayed his naked bottom and we had to admit that he was running around pantless in hopes of a potty wee. In fact, we went much further than that. Given the time difference I suspect we ruined their breakfast but this is of no import to us, we’d already eaten and are smugly used to the odd dirty potty. In fact, potty training is pretty much all there is to talk about in our house these days. Poor little bean, the workings of his innermost plumbing are public enough without me rabbiting on about it to all and sundry (apologies here to anyone who has dared visit us in the last month).

No, there are more important things on the agenda today. This is, in fact, all about our current, massive dilemma.

The spud, as some of you may know, is currently in a wonderful Montessori nursery. He loves it. He’s happy. He’s talking and counting and using the toilet and singing and tidying up and using a handkerchief and saying ‘Miss Bharti, FUN’ all the way home about his key worker. Frankly, we love it too. Rather a lot. However, this garden of delight is in Streatham, which is, on a good day an 8 minute drive and on a bad, 20 minutes. Each way. In rush hour. Twice a day. This means [gets out calculator] between 30 and 80 minutes in the car every day just to get him there and back.

He has, since birth, been on the waiting list of our local, non-Montessori nursery. It has a long waiting list because it’s a particularly good nursery and all the spud’s bestest friends are either already there or on the waiting list. He knows it because his childminder used to take him there twice a week, because she is part of their affinity programme which is the entire reason we chose her in the first place. Finally, it is a five minute walk from our front door. This week they rang us to say that he’s been offered a place starting in January.

With the exception of one neighbour who has a PHD in anthropology and won’t let her child watch TV (so, depending on how I feel her opinion is either the most valuable of everyone's or the ranting of a mad person) everyone thinks we are bonkers to even consider turning it down – I mean, it’s the best nursery for miles. And all his friends will be there. Or have I said that already?

We have, on balance, decided to go ahead, although we haven’t told Montessori yet. I may possibly cry during the meeting because I wanted him in Montessori so badly. He’s doing so well, you see. He loves it. They have French lessons, for crying out loud.

Anyway, the deciding factor is the distance. Yes, it will be a matter of seconds for us to dash out the door and fetch him from the local nursery. Yes, we will be saving gallons of petrol and carbon emissions and ultimately the planet.

The best thing however is that the spud will no longer be party to my road rage.

Quite a lot of the journey to Montessori involves complex little neighbourhood intersections where everyone just kind of gets in each other’s way and, ultimately, tempers are raised. I, unfortunately, am absolutely useless at curbing my tongue but it wasn’t until someone honked at us yesterday and the spud yelled ‘BUTTER’ at him that I realised that things have gone Too Far.

Yes yes yes. I know. We’re signing him up for the local. I’ll get my coat.

17 comments:

Michelle said...

Sparx, you are so clever with words! It's always so good to read your posts. I empathize with you on switching preschools. When it's a choice between two great things, how do you choose?

Helen + ilana = Hi said...

I'm adding BUTTER to my euphemisms (us 'em as 'ems) list. I'll trade you RATS IN A BAGGY. I'm all for the new nursery which is closer, easier and all his friends are there! No brainer in my world!

Rose said...

I also empathize with you about switching from Montessori to a regular school - Ella will be probably making that switch in grade 1, and she is thriving in montessori, so it will be a hard choice. Rose xo

Mom de Plume said...

Montessori is a great start for a child. And he's had that. The good has already been done! He will thrive in a mainstream school, especially if it is the best one around and all his friends are there!!! Good choice!

Jennie said...

So I gather that you're still working from home, since you have to drive back after each drop-off? Oh, you'll be thanking yourself a week after he's started at the local. Promise. Dante's quite close to home, unfortunately that's not the same place all his friends went, and I spent months (seriously) on the verge of tears for tearing them apart.

I too, love the "Butter". Sounds funny to shout in Danish though (SMØR!). Doesn't exactly roll off the tongue.

The Dotterel said...

We don't have the luxury of that kind of choice up here. The Montessori nursery sounds cool, though.

She's like the wind said...

Better to be a calm, gentle mummy than a raving road raged one, I believe kids thrive with their friends and a good upbringing, although that's just my opinion, I'm sure he'll be fine. French lessons, why he can have them at home! x

Jonny's Mommy said...

Yes. It is time to change. Soon or worse things will be coming out.

I also worry about JG repeating things I say while we are driving. I live in the middle of nowhere...where tractors suddenly rip out in front of me. Yes, tractors can "rip out" real fast sometimes.

Let us know how this all goes.

Potty Mummy said...

Thought it was time I delurked, our having been included on the same list by Tara... Love the road rage story. My oldest just sits in the back seat of the car muttering 'for god's sake!' every time I have to stop suddenly or similar. It's rather like driving with my father...(can't think where he got the expression from, btw)

Helen said...

As someone who considers swearing to be her native tongue, I had to laugh. Not at you, but at the similarity to our situations. My kids have heard, and repeated worse, all while running around bare-butted through the house during potty training. I've explained that certain words are for adults only (I do my best to curtail my swearing around the kids, but I refuse to give it up entirely). They seem to understand.

It is hard to leave one school for another. I felt a wrench when my oldest left preschool for kindergarten, and I had no choice in that matter - she had to go! But you always wonder when your child moves on to something else, is it really for the best. In your case, I think you'll be happy with the decision to switch in the long run.

darth sardonic said...

not the dreaded "b" word!! say it isn't so! i have discovered that advice from other parents is simply that, advice. you do what you gotta do, and most people raise semi-normal kids despite all the differences.

DJ Kirkby said...

'Butter' oh that is inspired! Way to go Spud, I now have a new 'swear' to use! If the nursery close to home doesn't work out then the solution is simple...move closer to the Montessori nursery! No, no need to tell me I am a genius...

Sparx said...

Michelle - I know, it's really hard. We've had to really weigh it all up...

Helen! Rats in a Baggy! Hahahaha!!! I will DEFINITELY be using that!

Rose - it's really tough, he's not been there that long either... I'm hating this.

Mom de Plume - I hope so... it's not been that long though... Thanks fro the encouragement.

Jennie - you're right, I'm sure we'll be really happy at having him nearby. Smor - is that 'butter' or the 'b' word?

The Dotterel.. I know, we're really really lucky.

She's Like the Wind - you're right of course. Nice to see you!

Jonny's Mommy - I love the image of tractors 'ripping out' - I've lived the the country and seen it so I do understand!

Potty Mommy - oh for GOD's sake! That made me laugh - my friend's two year old says that too, I don't think we're doing too badly!

Helen - glad to hear it's going to turn out alright on the swearing front, cross fingers on the school... thanks!

Darth... yes, the dreaded 'b' word... although not 'bugger' which is what he's started saying all on his own, we don't use that one!

DJ - yes, I'm using 'butter' now too! Unfortunately, moving to Streatham is not an option at the moment... or ever, I think...

Rob Clack said...

But surely he hears French at home....
Haven't had time to read the comments, so maybe the answer's there.

I've tagged you. Don't feel obliged.

Jen said...

I'm sure he'll do great regardless. I think I will scream "BUTTER" the next time I'm in the car. I know someone who makes up really silly ones, like "Son of a purple rhinoceros". She said it makes her and her son laugh, which relieves her tension immediately.

Sparx said...

Rob - oh, I know... but he's actually speaking it at home now which is new... thanks for the tag, will have to see, it looks hard!

Jen - Son of a purple rhinoceros!!! I'll have to add that to 'Rats in a Baggy'!

heather said...

We have at least one story per child in that "hot" language acquisition stage! I think my favourite, though, was Sarah, age 2 and a half, complaining as she was trying to get a snack, "I can't get this suckin' fridge open!!!" We never really learned how to prevent it, as potty mouth seems as hard to shake as smoking for some, but they all seem quite lovely now, so, I say, swear away...chances are he'll just grow up to reprimand you for it, as mine do...