Building Bonds Between a Toddler and her Grandparents

April 26, 2016

My mom and dad visited London last month and it’s taking me longer than expected to write the full blog post.  We crammed a ton into 2 weeks and I want to make sure to include all the cool things we did.  But as I was writing it, I realised I spent an inordinate amount of time on one particular event, which I’m sure was the highlight of their trip.  So much so that I’ve concluded it needs to be shared separately in all its glory.

On one of the days they were here, I had already booked a session for the little one at Kensington Palace, which offers activities for toddlers at certain times throughout the year.  The sessions vary from week to week and included Story Time, Rhythm and Dance, Musical Instruments and more.  We’d been to a few in the past and I was very impressed.  They were so well-organized, loads of fun and engaging for the little ones.  I was very much looking forward to this next one, called “Messy Play”.  Only two adults are allowed to accompany each child and I thought it’d be fun for Mom and Dad, so I bowed out. After I walked them over to Kensington Palace, I regretfully had no other choice but to get some coffee at Starbucks and relax. The sacrifices we make for our parents, right? In all honesty, “Messy Play” was the one that I was most looking forward to because I thought it would be fun to watch the toddler paint or play with clay or whatever it was that they had planned, without being concerned about getting the whole house messy.  WELL…when I went to meet them an hour later, my poor parents looked like they’d been through battle…a battle with paint, glue, flour and an overly ambitious teacher.  My mom was covered in 12 different colors of paint and my dad was soaked in sweat.  Needless to say, the teacher (which also varies for each session) may have over-estimated the abilities of toddlers.


When my parents entered the room, there was a long sheet of butcher paper laid out and multiple dishes of paint and paintbrushes.  For the adults, they offered low-seating, which my mother described as analogous to a semi-deflated tire. The teacher had high-hopes for these budding artists, as she began by asking them to “draw your favourite forest animal” with paint.  She soon reminded the little ones to only paint in their own section.  Apparently, this reminder was prompted by my daughter running across the butcher paper, stepping in various paint trays while shrieking with joy and, every once in a while, stopping to “shake her booty” (her signature move – a pose similar to downward dog while simultaneously shaking her booty in the air. Video depiction is included below).  My daughter was able to run freely through the forest animals/indiscernible scribbles multiple times as my mom was unable to maneuver herself out of the deflated tire in a timely manner.  In the midst of the chaos, my dad, who is prone to overheating, is sweating bullets in the tiny, hot room and walking back and forth between inside and outside.  After the painting debacle (during which my mom made the executive decision to strip my child down to her diaper, further enhancing the “booty shaking” move), the sweet, but sinister teacher decides that now is a good time to move on the next project.  She proceeds to give each child flour.  FLOUR.  And then mix it with WATER.  Ahhh, yes.  Fluffy white flour mixed with water makes a concoction that (we would later learn) adheres to the body for an uncanny length of time and causes happy-go-lucky toddlers to screech in terror.  My poor daughter jammed her hands into the mixture, as any toddler would, and upon realising it was stuck to her hands, started screaming.  My mom is hurriedly trying to grab my flailing child and wipe it off her hands to prevent a full-blown meltdown.  At this point in the story, I paused to ask my dad what he’s been doing during this fiasco, aside from walking back and forth to get cool air.  “Laughing at your mom”.  Ah, yes.  As would I, dad.  As would I.  To make a long story short, they futilely went through an entire container of baby wipes and still left the building with my daughter looking like a smurf and my mom caked in paint and a concrete-like substance.  And sadly, this is the only picture I got during the entire incident.  Why yes, thanks for asking – my coffee experience was divine, despite my name being spelled wrong!


In other news, be on the lookout for my upcoming YouTube video entitled, “How to Make Toddler Friendly Super Glue Using Only Flour and Water!”


1 Comment

  • Reply Peggy Beery April 27, 2016 at 1:31 am

    Heather—-You have a gift of gab—this is tooo funny ! Love it ! Keep the adventures coming our way. This is a hoot !!! Peggy Warnock Berry

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