My twins start Grade One in the fall, which officially catapults them out of the category of preschoolers. I’m not sure what they’re called now. Schoolers doesn’t quite have the same categorical recognition. And the term Grade Schoolers is awkward. I’m going for kids. Just plain kids.
Since my kids are beyond preschool, I now feel I’m an expert on this age group, not unlike a person who’s kicked a bad habit and shares her secrets with a megaphone.
So here it is, my one piece of advice for every adult who will ever come in contact with a preschooler: make sure you have a favourite colour.
I made the mistake of going into this parenting thing without one. To me, a colour was a colour. In the same way a table was a table, a sidewalk a sidewalk.
“Mommy, what’s your favourite colour?” my preschool twins would ask twelve times each day.
At first I tried honesty.
“I don’t have one,” I’d say.
Then my kids would beg, cajole, and repeat.
I held my ground for a long time. I didn’t have a favourite colour. And there was a reason for this.
About 20 years ago, I went to a Color Me Beautiful party. If you don’t know what this is, one woman fastens a white cape over you, velcros it tightly around your neck, and then drapes a series of colour wheels around her victim while her disciples ooh and aaah. Like in any cult, these women share their testimonials. I listened to tales of how one woman’s life was changed when she found out she was a “Fall.” Two other peons cooed about how they switched wardrobes after realizing one of them was a “Spring” with a Winter wardrobe and the other a “Winter” with a Spring wardrobe. Clearly, a middle class crisis.
When these women did my colours, however, there were no oohs and aahs. There was silence. We really can’t tell, they admitted, draping colour wheel after colour wheel around my neck. None of them looked good. This has never happened, the Grand Poobah said.
Then they did my makeup anyway and sent me home looking like a tart. A frosted one. Maybe this explains my makeup crisis.
I get the shivers just thinking about it.
No wonder I can’t deal with the “What’s your favourite colour?” question.
I have yet to utter, “They all suck.”
Instead, I adopted a “favourite” colour.
It reminds me of spring leaves, I say. And if you live in Canada, this colour is hope. Given my experience with colour wheels, hope is as good as it gets.
And so, I reiterate: make sure you have a favourite colour. If you don’t, you will never pass muster with any 4 or 5-year-old.
Any comments from Springs or Summers?