Sunday, 15 March 2009

Grandma arrived today from overseas for her yearly visit to the UK. Egg and Dumpie hovered like greedy little vultures round the present-laden suitcase.
"Look Dumpie, Grandma bought you your own special little pants because you're such a big boy now! You can use the toilet like Eggie", my mom offered hopefully.

"No," Dumpie said matter-of-factly and stood his ground, looking decidedly disgusted at the three pairs of mini 'banana hammocks' laid out on the sofa. (Why oh why do I feel such a sense of dread when I even begin to contemplate potty training Le Dumps...?)

"Hey Dumpie", I countered, putting on my most excited voice and feigning enthusiasm for the albeit adorable little coloured underpants, "Look what Grandma got you, aren't they cool?"

"No" Dumps repeated. You could tell by his solemn yet resolute look that he considered the matter closed and was beginning to show signs of irritation. Auntie Mo tried one last time.

"Dumps?" she began tentatively..."Look at these little boats - should we try these ones on?" She held out one of the brightly coloured pairs and made to grab him.

"No!" he screamed, making it very clear where he stands on the nappy vs. potty debate. By the look of it I'm going to be elbow deep in wet wipes and Huggies for the foreseeable future (sigh). Great.

Later in the afternoon Jay dispensed himself off to some local pub or another to soak up the uncharacteristically hot sunshine with the implicit understanding that no matter how many ales imbibed he would NOT forget to pick up his 4 year old from a local birthday party at some point. I was slightly concerned to hear that he was planning to do a 'drop by' on the only other member of his exclusive made-up club "The P.H.D.'s" ("Piss Head Dad's"). To be fair there are probably a whole plethora of suitable candidates within a square mile of here judging by the hungover specimens who litter the park on weekends, but like I said it's a 'made up club' and hence quite difficult to organise - let alone arrange meetings for - especially given the prerequisite for membership.

Grandma, Dumpie and I ambled slowly down the street stopping only briefly to browse in a cute little shop selling pretty trinkets. Dumpie is nothing if not an opportunist, and once inside, unbuckled himself from his push chair, hopped out and cozied up to Grandma faster than you could say "Spoiled Chubby Chicken". He picked up a package of "Mon-Key's" (for those of you hopelessly NOT in the know, these are funny little monkey heads which fit over your keys - geddit?) from the shelf and said, "I like."

Now we have this joke about how Dumpie has inherited his love of 'shopping' from me - only it's not a joke - it's true. However unlike Mama, Dumpie is a rather restrained shopper, and insists on serious deliberation before making a purchase. He'll examine an article from every angle, turning it round and round in his little hands, then usually mutter "Noooo" quietly to himself, talking himself out of it and shake his head, put it back and move on. We waited for him to do the same today...but no such luck. Instead he glared as I took it from him, then stubbornly picked it back up again (several times I might add).

"I LIKE it," was all he would say, followed by "Buy it ME!". After countless more rounds of 'pick it up and put it back' we had to concur that this was, indeed the case.
As you might expect, Grandma ended up buying him the bloody things and we left the store with a supremely pleased looking Dumpie happily swinging his new purchase on his arm as he hummed quietly yet victoriously to himself.

Moments later we all come to a sudden halt as Dumpie stopped directly in front of a lovely laquered white table outside an antiques shop. We stood there flabergasted as he lovingly stroked the wood, and waited patiently for him as he stepped back and examined it from a few different angles.

Once again he said, "I like". Now an overpriced package of plastic monkey heads is one thing - but a £350 antique piece of furniture is quite another. It took a good several minutes of cajoling to convince Dumpie to move on - and that was only on the provisio that we 'think about buying' the table and come back for it later. It was with a regretful "O-Tay" that he finally turned his back on the period piece and finally consented to follow us home. (Should I be offended that my two year old assumes to have better taste than I and is potentially hatching plans for a whole home decor overhaul?....Without even consulting me?)

Egg meanwhile is worn out from two back-to-back 5th birthday parties today. He remained unconvinced when I tried to convey that one day in about, oh, thirty years, he would KILL for two invites in one day. He doesn't care about thirty years from now though - he just cares about how far everyone he knows is from 'one hundred'. (At the magic age of one hundred he believes we all die, and can therefore rattle off by heart how many years Dumps, Dada, his Aunties, his Grandparents and his cousins have until D-Day.) I have assured him that we all have an impossibly huge amount of years left together before any of us go up to heaven to be with Jesus. (Mental note to self: better make sure Egg doesn't follow thought process through to conclusion that any shortcuts to 'heaven' like crossing road on his own or riding his bicycle down three flights of stairs might prove a clever strategy.)

Anyway I'm knackered and it's time to put a lid on the weekend. As I reflect on the past few days I have to admit that both the high AND low points of my past 48 hours have revolved around fighting with my 2 year old over the last dregs of the most heavenly, calorie-laden (whoops) Oreo Cookie Milkshake. How sad it that?...

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