Changing Seasons

The weekend is behind us and with it the best of autumn. When the clocks changed, so too did the weather and it’s been drizzy, damp and gloomy ever since.

However, yesterday morning, I was awoken as in a fairytale by Monkey-face planting a big wet sloppy kiss on my lips. When I opened my eyes, I was met with a wide toothy grin about two inches from my face. As wake-up calls go, that’s quite a pleasant one.

We spent the day, in contrast to Saturday, indoors, playing with her Duplo supermarket. She likes putting in one of the staff into the trolley to be wheeled around by one of the customers (“where’s the pushchair mummy?”) and we did lots of drawing and colouring in.

Playing is exhausting

I’d drawn the outline of some leaves, selected appropriate autumn-leaf colours from the available crayons and off we went. She seemed to really like it: “lots and lots of colours, mummy.” Earlier we’d been playing with the Eric Carle Very Hungry Caterpillar My First app on the iPad, matching colours to items. Specifically, to match a butterly to “lots of colours.” Obviously, that stuck! I cut out the leaves and I’l deciding whether to make a wreath of them for her bedroom door or whether to stable them to lengths of twine as a kind of mobile for her room.  

Obviously, none of this relates to the books we are reading, but it’s all very visibly impacting her vocabulary and her understanding of the books we are reading. She’s now at the stage where she won’t get out of bed for a game of fewer than  50 pieces that can be strewn about the floor, which is why mummy on the whole far prefers reading. Nanny is fond of buying these kind of activities, and one such matches the animal to the word. We played a game where I found the word and called out what it was and Monkey-face matched it to the picture. I was genuinely astonished at the animals she matched although there was an amusing moment where I asked where the snail was and she excitedly presented a picture of a whale. Fair enough. (See Snail and the Whale, Julia Donaldson.) We also purchased some Usbourne ABC flash-cards from Bookseller Crow in Crystal Palace, on Saturday which are going down a storm.

We read together, too, of course. I chose Each Peach Pear Plum when she woke up and I was really surprised how she was able to pick out the intricate detail of the lovely drawings and already understood how they related to each other. We sang some of the related nursery rhymes, which she clearly loves to do, before she asked for Crazy Hair, which she read with her dad. At the end of each couplet, she adores shouting out “Crazy Hair” – and so do we.


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