I consider myself to be extremely fortunate…despite living in the South West when I conceived Monty (I’m a brummy really), the stars aligned to enable me to not only transfer my job, my husband and my life back to Birmingham, without much of a hitch (we’ll ignore the two houses that fell through on the way) – why did we move? Well, my mum had just returned and the Christmas before Monty was born, I was about 4 months pregnant, she announced that she would be happy to look after him 4 days a week to enable me to go back to work.
Monty is now 2 and has enjoyed this arrangement with ‘Ganny’ for the last 18 months; they go to different playgroups 3 days a week, the farm park, swimming, rides on buses/trains, the shops, the playground, the sea life centre, dance class; my mum has chickens, cats and Guinea pigs, a climbing frame in her back garden, a sandpit, her front room is bursting at the seams with toys for him to play with. They do craft, practice numbers, the alphabet, play with cars, buses, figures…she has bikes and trikes and things that light up, spin round and flash and vibrate…he has a cousin 9 weeks younger than him with special needs who he gets the privilege of spending every Monday with. On a Thursday, he gets a day with his mummy, where visit his other little friends, his ‘gandad’, we go shopping, play in the park, visit National Trust properties, the museum, library etc
Yet the question I am asked constantly is ‘when is Monty going to nursery?’
To make it clear, I don’t have anything against nurseries, they do a fantastic job and the staff dote on other people’s children…but given the above arrangement, why would I choose to send Monty to a nursery if I didn’t have to?
My point real is that there is more than one way to ‘skin a cat’. Monty is one of the most well-rounded, caring, kind, talkative, active, intelligent kids I know (OK I am slightly biased as his mother). He is socially very able, loved being with other children and interacts with ease. Monty learns every day through experiences, he gets to go places and see things, he has the unconditional love of ‘Ganny’, who now also has a thriving social life on the High Street from all the baby groups the two of them attend. The bond between them is special, he adores her, he feels safe with her and he loved going to spend time with her – there are no tears when we leave him, just excitement of ten adventures the next day will hold…