It's stripey tights and pink ugg boot weather. However, the children are still content to wear short sleeved uniforms and summer PJs most of the time. It is unlikely there will be any stylish layering of clothes under puffy, hooded parkas accessorised with a jaunty scarf and gloves for my offspring even at the peak of winter. They run around so much and get so hot and bothered, that they simply start peeling clothes off and dumping them in stray puddles for 'some-one' to pick-up later.
Little Wanna still wanders from the car park to the swimming pool in her swimmers and thongs, I'm abashed to say. It is undoubtedly starting to dawn on them that it's getting a trifle chilly outside on these late autumn evenings, especially with damp hair and no jacket, but they scoot fast and know that the car is warm inside. Off they race like mad things on a survivor challenge, with bare limbs waving about, and leap into their seats, buckle up and settle in for a toasty reading of Adults Only by Morris Glietzman or Beware of the Storybook Wolf read by Hugh Laurie, during the half-hour drive home.
It will officially be winter next week and the start of the birthday bonanza period in our house punctuated by Term 2 holidays. This means we will have to wrangle with the idea of a home party or two or three. This does not come naturally to me. I am, sadly, not a capable party planner mother who can assemble immaculate table spreads, with crafty banners and pom-pom balls suspended from the ceiling, nor can I devise clever, thematic games which keep every child completely entranced and well-behaved. It invariably ends up a schmozzle.
The "Children's Birthday Party" as a Western social construct is interesting phenomena loaded with emotion, driven by commercial interests and replete with complex protocols. It induces in me a state of high anxiety. Like pink ugg boots and swimmers in winter, I expect we will find our own style and work out some sort of celebration which will leave happy memories without having to resort to a fun parlour or other effortless, but slightly impersonal, outsourced party service. This is my June challenge.