Now that the children are older, they are significantly less embarrassing. It has been really quite a while since any of the children deposited a poo in the wrong place, or pulled down my skirt at a drinks reception. Such good behaviour has significantly reduced my opportunities for story-telling, but does at least mean I can now go out in public without fear of humiliation.
Or so I thought.
I took the children to our favourite cafe at the weekend, for a slap-up lunch of something-with-chips. As we waited for our food, the children began discussing their toys.
‘I love my teddy,’ Evie said. ‘I’m going to marry him.’
Bit weird, but I let it go. She’s only five, after all.
‘That makes Teddy my boyfriend,’ she giggled. ‘I like to cuddle my boyfriend.’
‘Right,’ I said, thinking it might be a good idea to change the subject, and getting a horrible flash of how life will be when they’re teenagers.
Never one to be left out of a conversation, Georgie took up the theme. ‘My boyfriend is Squirrel Nutkin,’ she said. ‘I love my boyfriend Nutkin’.
I knew what she was going to say just a split second too late to stop her. You see, Georgie doesn’t just cuddle her squirrel…
‘I suck my boyfriend,’ she said loudly. ‘I suck him all night long.’
Utterly horrified, my mouth opened and closed, but no sound came out.
‘Suck, suck, suck, suck suck!’ Georgie sang out.
Had a pin dropped at that moment, it would have clattered onto the floor like a dropped tea tray.
The silence was broken by a woman tutting at the next table. I didn’t dare look round.
Josh tapped me on the arm, looking a little uncertain. ‘I sleep with Elephant,’ he said. ‘But I don’t want to marry him.’
‘Very wise,’ I said. ‘Now, who’s for a milkshake?’