We made it out despite the sickness and actually discovered something really fun in the process.
Blatantly when a doctor says go get rechecked in two days’ time they know there is going to be something up. I can only assume it is because they are so hesitant to give out antibiotics nowadays that that is why they did not give them to E on Sunday. She only had a mild ear infection (2/5 according to the doc) but M (who fell ill a few days earlier) was up at the top of the scale. He is now looking really chirpy after the right medication while E has been looking paler and really down. Today I got confirmation that my poorly little girl was now a 5/5.
After some antibiotics and more ibuprofen I asked E what she would like to do? Her response was to go “see Daddy for lunch pleEease”. How could I refuse? We packed up the troop and headed off to Manor for lunch.
While we were having our lunch I noticed that today was the day for one of their children’s activity afternoons. Most Wednesday’s from 2pm until 4pm the Centre Manor Marin organises something for all parents who are stuck for an activity for their kids (in Neuchâtel there is no school on Wednesday Afternoons). Today the event was entitled “Viens créer ton mini jardin” (Come create your mini garden). I thought that sounds like fun so we drove around Marin a couple of times so that M had a little nap and would be bearable and then headed back in time for the session that was just starting.
The lovely ladies (animatrice) running the event explained how we were going to paint plant pots and then get to plant a selection of spring flowers in them. The children were shown how to hold their plant pot upside down on one hand while painting it with the other (well, that didn’t really work) and how to use one paintbrush per colour and that they would have to take turns for each colour. I was suprised at how well the later worked. Each child went mad with their one colour until they got bored and then waited patiently to swap with someone else. There was a range of ages from another 2 1/2 year old to a couple of 12 year old girls but they all interacted well together the older ones helping the younger ones.
This is probably very Swiss and trusting but a lot the mothers left their children to play under the guidance of the animatrice going to get on with their shopping and checking in from time to time but myself and the mother of the other 2 year old stuck around to help (not that the kids wanted it).
While we were waiting for the paint to dry the animatrice set up games of charades or grandmother’s footsteps for the children to play. E was a bit to young for these still and asked me to get her a snack so we had our tea slightly early and she sat with her bread roll and piece of chocolate and watched the older children acting out being an elephant or a dog.
By the time she had finished her tea her pot was dry so we took it over to the queue for getting our flowers. E got to choose what coloured flowers she would like to fill her’s with and the result was very impressive. A very proud little girl left the shopping centre happily clutching onto her creation.
It was actually a place I could see myself meeting other mothers and making some new friends as towards the end it became a bit of a gathering. I can’t believe it was totally free either. We will definitely be back another afternoon and I can’t wait for M to be able to join in too.