Sunday, 5 August 2007


I'm going to put up rules again. And these are not for Squirrel, Tiger and Shark. Their rules, on the kitchen door, are for getting out the house. They go something like this:

1. Brush your teeth.
2. Put on your knickers.
3. Put on your shoes.
4. Go to the toilet.
5. Wait in the hall.

The next set of rules will be for Sasha. And they might read something like this:

1. When you have finished breakfast do not creep off to your room.

2. If you are in the front room with the children, try and engage with them. You could look at them. You can even talk to them, if you try. Do not ignore them and draw pictures on the computer using their kiddy art package while Squirrel leads an expedition over the back of the sofa to Back-in-Time land, clutching three jigsaw boxes in place of suitcases, incidentally full of dinosaurs. The jigsaw pieces have been dumped on the floor, of course.

3. If mummy Grit says 'Can we get ready to go out to the farm?' she is not inviting you to go downstairs and choose a new outfit.

4. As we are driving to the farm and mummy Grit cannot remember whether it's the second or third turn right, please do not watch her struggle with one hand trying to find the lead to plug in the sat nav system and moving only when you are explicitly told 'Find the lead that plugs in the sat nav, Sasha. It is black. You are sitting on it.'

5. When you get to the farm with us and we have spent 45 minutes picking raspberries and are completely dehydrated and starving thanks to mummy Grit leaving the water and sandwiches in the car, you could offer to go and get them.

6. When mummy Grit gets everyone to sit down in the shade and not stagger about falling into the prickly bushes, thus giving her a chance to leg it back to the car for refreshments, do not kick over the punnets of raspberries we have just put down next to us.

7. Do not say, before mummy Grit goes off to the car, 'I have some water' and then clearly have none and drink all Tiger's instead.

8. Please teach us some German. Actually, this is one of the big things we asked you to do. Consider it is all our failing, for being home educators. Now please tell us the word for cauliflower. We don't want to drag it out of you. But we will if necessary.

9. Please speak and move when you are on car journeys, whether we are going backwards or forwards to the farm or not. Having a passenger who stares straight ahead and never speaks is a bit like keeping a cardboard cut-out in the car. In fact, Sasha, I might well make a big cardboard cut-out and stick it in the kitchen.

Mummy Grit's now going to put up a rule of her own.

1. No more teenage girls from rule-based backgrounds.


these boots said...

oooh blimey, poor you!

HelenHaricot said...

doesn't sound v successful.
i think i may have seen you today aiming towards some roman excercises, but was having a fraught headachey slump moment of my own [cf above] so didn't want to say hello in case I was either wrong or unwelcome. [I was the fat woman with 1 wailing and 1 screaming child looking angrily at dawdling husband with laden buggy in your way]
we had icecreams to recover equanimity and went and did sticking in activity tent. I would have liked to see romans

grit said...

hello helenharicot! sorry we did not manage to say hello!

...screaming children, dawdling husbands, laden buggies? the possession of at least one of these is an entry requirement isn't it?