Before I begin, let it be known in my defence that whilst this is an everyday moment, it is not a moment that happens every day. Just every day that has the word “tomato” featuring somewhere in the lunch menu. Furthermore, and just so that my health visitor doesn’t call social services the moment I press publish, H is mere millimetres out of shot in these photos.
Baby led weaning is a very wonderful thing, and as well as being a perfect fit to both my girls’ eating personalities, it’s hilarious to watch. But clean and tidy it is not. Well, lets just say that this wasn’t exactly a one off. Elma throws herself into lunch with spectacular enthusiasm, and who am I to deny her on the grounds of cleanliness.
Despite being in the thick of a second round at baby led weaning, I have utterly failed to develop the skills necessary to successfully and completely remove pasta sauce from a very wrigglish little girl using only baby wipes. No matter how closely I stare at her skin I inevitably spend the afternoon coming across little tomatoey tide lines behind an ear, in the crook of her elbow, or adding that auburn tint to delicate eyebrows.
There’s really only one solution: a proper wash.
But it’s a bit too much to have a full on bath in the middle of the day, especially as if Kitty’s around she’ll want to jump in too, and on the few occasions that I tried sitting her in her bath seat and hosing her off with the shower she mostly looked bemused, then worried, and then a little lost and in need of a big cuddle.
And so it is, that I admit to you all, that on really really messy days, Elma is gently lifted from her highchair, carried upstairs, stripped of all and sundry, and gently placed into the bathroom sink.
She fits perfectly. The curved side of the basin supports her back, and there’s just enough room for two plump legs and ten tiny toes to stretch across to the other side. She sits there quite contentedly, splashing her hand through the stream of water as I rinse everything in reach free from her lunch, before being bundled up in her towel, cuddled dry and dressed for milk and nap time.
One of these days she’s not going to fit any more and I can only hope that that particular growth spurt will also herald the arrival of tidier eating, or perhaps the invention of a new super-bib or something, although I suspect that when the day comes I will rather miss my dayglo baby and her bathroom sink splosh wash.