Mouldy Sandwiches?

Elsa is a nightmare when it comes to bringing her lunchbox home from school. She insists on sandwiches any day when there isn’t a roast dinner and nearly always leaves her lunchbox at school for days on end. (So much for free school meals!)

Anyway as usual, she left her lunchbox at school over the last half term holiday. For some reason, she always gets up to put her empty drink carton in the bin at school but leaves her leftover food in the box to bring home.

On the first day back to school, I accidentally gave Elsa’s lunchbox to Anna when she went into her classroom. I realised straightaway and told Elsa to go to Anna’s classroom to get it but for some reason she refused. I then told Anna’s teacher what had happened and she promised to take the lunchbox to Elsa’s classroom.

So far, so good. No big deal, I hear you thinking.

So you can imagine my surprise that night when Elsa came home and asked why she had been given mouldy sandwiches for her lunch and an empty box of raisons?! She told me that she had told the dinner lady what was in her lunchbox and had to be given a school dinner instead. She said she couldn’t believe what she had been given to eat!

I told her that I had made sure her lunchbox was taken to her classroom that morning. Her reply, “Oh yeah, I remember the teacher bringing it in.” I said to her why on earth would I give her mouldy sandwiches and an empty raison box???  What was she thinking? What sort of a mother did she think I was? Why would I ever do something like that?

I then reminded her that she has a habit of leaving her old lunchboxes on the lunch trolley and had obviously picked up the old one. Her reply, “Oh yeah, I must have done that.” I then made her promise to tell the dinner lady about the mix up the next day. I didn’t want to imagine what the dinner lady must have been thinking!

The following day, Elsa told me that she had explained that she had picked up an old lunchbox  to the dinner lady, who said that she had thought that was what had happened. Thank heavens for that. There was me thinking I was going to be down on some sort of bad mother register for sending my child to school with mouldy food.

Elsa still forgets to bring her lunchbox home some days but she has been warned that if she doesn’t start remembering, she won’t get any sandwiches in the future and will be forced to eat mountains of beans and fish varieties (fingers/cakes/goujons) which she hates. A pretty good incentive I think as I have tried school dinners recently but that’s a post for another day…

I swear not…

This is something I did not think I would have to deal with yet. Remember Elsa is 7 and Anna is 4. It is not something I thought I would have to deal with from Anna first either as she is the youngest.

The issue is swearing. Seriously, at these ages, it is unbelievable. Last week Elsa came running upstairs saying “Mom, Anna is swearing, Anna is swearing. She is in the conservatory repeating “effing” hell!” Anna came upstairs and carried on swearing with a big smile on her face.

(NB they were pronouncing the “F” word as if it rhymed with rocking).

I explained to her that such language was unacceptable and it was adult language so until she became an adult, she was not allowed to use it. I asked her where she had heard it and she said from her dad. Conveniently he was away on a trip at the time but I had great pleasure messaging him to let him know what bad habits our kids were picking up from him.

When he got home and confronted Anna, she denied everything of course and I haven’t heard about her using any more bad language but I dread to thing what she’s saying in the playground!

When the kids were babies, we agreed on a word to use instead of swearing so that they didn’t pick up any bad language. This worked really well for years. When we needed to express ourselves, we used the word “moo”. As in “what the moo” and “for moos sake” and my own favourite, “oh my moo!” Overtime the “moo” talk has fallen by the wayside and the real swear words do slip out occasionally. I think now is the time to re-introduce “moo” back into the family vocabulary and encourage Anna to use the phrase “mooing hell” when she needs to blow off some steam! Hopefully she will take this on board and save me some embarrassment at the next parents’ evening!

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