Sunday, November 03, 2013

Nursery

Due to Rachel's 103°F fever, Andrew and Rachel stayed home from church today. Using your powers of deduction you probably know this means I went to church with Miriam and Benjamin, alone. I spent an hour trying to keep them reverent quiet during sacrament meeting. Our bishop issued a bit of advice that parents try to keep their children's feet off the floor and I was a bit skeptical of this advice (since the bishop hasn't had to deal with an unruly toddler in over a decade) until a friend wrote a blog post extolling the very same advice—and she's right in the thick of the young-parent gig herself—so I thought I'd give it a go.

Miriam was fine (though I did let her colour kneeling down on the floor rather than sitting on her seat (because I believe children can listen and colour at the same time)) aside from the few time she decided to snatch toys from Benjamin (eliciting some shrill cries from him). Benjamin, though, was a handful!

He's too little to be very self-sufficient in any quiet activity. He can't colour without help. He can't be trusted to flip quietly through the hymn book. He can't even be handed a board book (because he'll likely toss it at the people in front of us). This means that I have to constantly be guiding his activities, which takes my attention away from the speakers.

We did our best this week, though I must admit that I did let him wander up and down the bench a few times while I relaxed and listened to what was being said. Next week is sure to go better...maybe.

Next week is our primary presentation. Once a year the primary children (ages three through eleven) put on a program for the rest of the congregation. They sing songs and each say a little part. It's fairly adorable, though it's quite the circus getting it ready!


We've been practicing for it the past few weeks rather than splitting the kids up for sharing time and primary classes. That means we have all sixty-some-odd children sitting in the same room together for two hours. Did I mention it's a circus?

With Andrew out of town and then sick at home with Rachel, I've been stuck wrangling Benjamin for the last two hours of church. Our primary president also has a baby she's stuck holding. That leaves only two able-bodied presidency members to direct the whole circus. It's been...chaotic. But I think we'll pull it off. These things always go better the day of than they do during any of the rehearsals (perhaps because their parents are all watching them so they daren't misbehave).

Our nursery is so huge that the dedicated nursery room is too small to contain them all, so only half the nursery is in the nursery while the other half meets in what we call the "overflow" on Sundays (but any other day of the week would just be part of the Cultural Hall). We had to kick the nursery out of the overflow, however, because we can't fit our entire primary in the primary room all at once. So we met in the overflow for practice while the nursery was held in the primary room. Got it?

Well, I had to go into the primary room to get a few things from the closet and I took Benjamin with me because I was the dedicated baby-wrangler. This turned out to be a very good thing because when Benjamin saw all the toys out and noticed some of his little friends playing with them, he jumped right in and started playing, too. So the nursery leader—bless her heart!—said I could just leave him in there.

He's seventeen months old today. He'll officially be in nursery when he's eighteen months old.

Some kids make the transition from hanging out with their parents to hanging out in nursery relatively smoothly. Others take it kind of hard. I think Benjamin will be alright because he was there during snack time and thought that was pretty awesome.

I didn't leave him in there the whole time, but I did appreciate not having to lug him around with me while I took attendance and met with the financial clerk and set out snacks for the (three classes of) Sunbeams and did a million other things.

It hardly seems possible that it's time for Benjamin to go into nursery, but at the same time I'm sure both Andrew and I will breathe a huge sigh of relief when we drop him off on December 8th!

1 comment:

  1. I was just wondering why he didn't go to nursery and then you answered my question. I've never heard of waiting until a child is 18 months old. Is this a Mormon tradition or just something they do in your ward? I can imagine it's hard getting much out of the preaching while having to watch a toddler. A few weeks ago a young child sat near us in church and she loved me for some reason and kept walking to me wanting to play. I hardly listened to the sermon since I was engrossed in Pria's cute face.

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