There was a time, not so very long ago, when I desperately tried to employ the distraction technique, but now it seems it is me who is being distracted.
I don't mean that little girl is trying to prevent me having a tantrum. Although, I do have a certain amount of respect for the mother in the advert who throws herself on floor in a full on kicking fit. (I can't remember what the advert is for though. Oh, yes I am a marketeers dream.)
Nope, My little Girl has begun developing an arsenal of tactics for delaying all sorts of things.
Bedtime, for example, started to be delayed by the invention of new songs:
' I have new song mummy, I just sing my new song'. These can be ditties on any topic but often feature poo.
Or, she withholds her good nights 'I didn't say good night to you mummy'.
Other distraction techniques are:
'I have a question for you mummy'
'just want to show you something mummy' - normally said as she wildly casts around for something completely not worthy of showing.
I'm not sure what it says about me, but I think she is better at this than I am.
This morning little girl decided to bypass the 'but you have to go to nursery as I'm going to work' argument by announcing from the very word go, yes even while still in her bed, that she was 'going to work with mummy today'.
Inside this gave me a big smile, nearly as big as when she sings 'you are my sunshine' to me. But it also bought a little panic...
Panic one: oh no not another stressful evening or her and her daddy as he tries to take her home to his for the night.
But, the biggest panic was OMG no peaceful day in the office drinking hot coffee, talking to adults and not hearing 'mummy, mummy, mummy, mummy I talking to you' every three minutes.
In the end I spent the day buried in eye hurting spreadsheets, she played with friends and went to the park with her father.
I have just had supper with a lovely lovely friend whose lovely lovely other half always meets her from the train station after dark. I've always wanted to be the kind of girl that boys felt protective like that towards. But I'm guessing that girls like that don't suffer the embarrassments I have in last week.
Last Tuesday I was merrily wending my down Chancery Lane, when a polite 'excuse me' alerted me to the fact that my skirt was tucked in my tights. At least I was wearing knickers.
Then on Thursday as I was heading up in the lift to my office in St Pauls I noticed the care label on my dress. Oh yes, you guessed it: I had commuted, via nursery, with my dress on inside out.
This morning as I strolled over Blackfriars Bridge a gust of wind blew the full skirt of my yellow dress up in a Marilyn Monroe fashion; but unlike Marilyn I did flash my orange knickers to the world.
Yes, it's ok knights no need to polish your armour.
You know sometimes things just happen how you picture them? well I had a bit of that on Monday.
Little girl had been looking forward to seeing her best friend and, to be honest, I was in desperate need of a bit of a chat, so we sent a breakfast invitation text and hooray it seemed like a plan.
But then those things happen that happen when us free thinking, living breathing, independent human beings get together, things didn't go to plan.
The little girls couldn't agree where to sit so I ended up heaving chairs about - aggravating my back.
Little girl changed her usual order to be the same as her friends but then didn't like it.
(It's such a hard stage to navigate when you yourself are still in the trying to be an individual and your child just wants to be like her friends, time to teach her the 'the same but different' me thinks)
Yes, I did get her her usual plain croissant because I knew she was hungry, yeh yeh bad mummy. I know.
Nice comic sharing occurred ahh I thought.
Then there was a little girl putting a leaf in the arm of her friends chair debacle. Debacle because in the way that only three year olds can muster, her friend didn't want a leaf on her chair, friend drama'd and little girl persisted.
I took little girl outside to convince her to desist. Then we sat on our own and little girl ate some breakfast and went over to apologise, she returned upset that she hadn't had an apology back - I wasn't there but I think she just didn't hear.
We re-united. But, then I had promised that if little girl ate breakfast we could go. More chaos over wether all going, catching up etc... Little girls that it is.
In this confusion Little Girl decided to look through her magnifying glass to see her friend bigger, it wasn't close up, but more drama and more persistence ensued.
And I got cross, cross with both of them, actually at this point it was probably the drama that was getting to me. Yeh Bad Mummy again. I said, quite fiercely, to both of them (yep bad mummy again again) they obviously didn't want to play together so took my little girl away.
All she kept asking was where's her friend was. Poor little girl loves with all her heart. But, while I didn't feel the drama was justified what could I do?
There were reunited later and played nicely in the park, but it was awkward. I had sent a text apologising for getting cross with both of them, I did explain to little girl that if, whatever her intentions, her behaviour upsets someone she she should just walk away or stop.
But, I can't help feeling that these two have developed this pattern and I think little girl is going to get her heart broken.
The rest of our day?
Was fab. Little girl took herself off for thirty minutes 'rest'.
Then we made this stepping stone - oh yes you can have a bejewelled stepping stone.
We gardened, we shared a sun lounger and chatted and all felt right in the world.