This post is about how my eldest son was almost a duck in the school play. Almost. He was so close. A baseball cap was transformed into a duck's face, web feet cut out, feather boa in place. Unfortunately, when the big day came around, my would-be duck came home with a temperature of 39ºC, doubled over with tummy pains. So that was it. Duck fame aspirations over. The almost-duck didn't seem remotely bothered to miss the big event, but I've traipsed the shops for the last month or so to find all the necessary items. So, dammit, I'm making him dress up today for a picture. (Will post here if he complies).
(OK, so I cheated... This picture was posted 6 months later, due to a complete refusal on behalf of my eldest to even try on the duck costume! Luckily, my youngest was happy to wear it for Halloween. He didn't think much of the tickly feathers though...)
This duck outfit marks a coming-of-age moment for me. It's the first school costume I've made. As I sewed the feathers on, I felt an invisible connection with my mother. My mum had a fantastic repertoire of dressing-up costumes that she would whip up for school festivals or birthday parties. My brothers and I won many a fancy dress prize thanks to Mum's deftness with the needle. Sadly, it's not a trait I've inherited.
Times have changed since the 70s. My mum would never have been thinking as her needle worked away, "I could just glue this" or "It would have been cheaper and easier to buy this at the Chinese shop down the road" or "This is the first and last time I do this by hand." So let's raise a glass to mothers everywhere for all those special things they did (and were probably never thanked for). Cheers Mum. I love you.