Not clever and popular, but still perfect

It went well yesterday with Katie's teacher. While she didn't tell me that Katie is popular and bright, she did demonstrate that she really knows my child. I find this immensely reassuring. If Miss Fry had told me that Katie was doing well, I would have left happy but a little unsettled, worrying if I'd just been appeased. Instead I was told that Katie could work more on her writing, could improve on building blocks, and is finally coming out of her isolationist and exclusive relationship with another little girl. That all sounds like my Katie. She can read forever, so we decided she didn't need any more work on that. Her writing is fairly limited, only being expressed in letters between herself and the aforementioned friend. (This has since escalated to giving barrettes and hair ribbons, which I think is the path to many tears and must be stopped.)

We discussed how much I miss Katie during the day and how happy she is at school. Miss Fry floated the idea of my taking Katie out early on Fridays. I think this is a great plan, but it won't work this week or next. After that it's two weeks of holiday, so we may start it mid-April. Then again, maybe not. It seems weird to start something like this so late in the year. Back on the first hand, some of my fondest memories from childhood were when my mom would take off a Monday just to spend time with me. That rocked.

While I was chatting to her teacher, Katie went to afterschool club. I found her covered in Marmite and orange juice colouring in a picture of Barbie(tm). She'd had a great time and I'd managed to get her out early enough to not have to pay. Woohoo! Just as we were leaving school I got a call from Andrew saying he would be home late. (Actually, he asked if he could stay late, which is the most awesome thing a husband can do.) I didn't fancy a difficult evening juggling the girls, dinner, and hairwash night on my own, so I asked Katie if she wouldn't rather go to a restaurant. She said, "Yes, as long as it's Pizza Express!" A girl after my own heart.

We headed back past the school and into the Village. The skies got suddenly very dark and threatening, so I convinced Katie to run. A hundred yards from the restaurant and the heavens opened. We were soaked before we reached the door. Katie, bless her, my super big girl, went ahead inside and got us a table! The waitstaff could see us through the wall o' windows, so they were very obliging. I then got Buffy strapped into a high chair and went back outside to collapse the buggy and bring it inside. All in the driving wind and rain. Katie entertained Buffy. My wonderful girls continued to be absolutely perfect. Katie ate her food without complaint. Buffy munched on a spoon and sometimes threw it on the floor. Katie found this hilarious and picked it up every time. I would wipe off the spoon, give it to Buffy, and the cycle would repeat.

There were no tears, no tantrums. Whenever I needed Katie to listen to me, she did so without hestitation. It was a PERFECT dining experience. The girls were so adorable and funny. I had such a wonderful meal. It was idyllic. It makes me want to do it again every day, but I know not to be greedy. It's sheer dumb luck that we weren't the screaming terrors in the corner. We certainly have been *that* family on occasion. This time just went perfectly. I am so happy and bursting with maternal pride. Seriously, they were so good Buffy's nose wasn't even dripping!

Sometimes the heavens do align and we remember why we pined for motherhood for all those decades.