WE HAD a little trial run of the blubbing that will no doubt occur when Ben takes his first step into school this week.

We tried on his uniform to check it fitted OK, cue mistyeyed staring of parents, hands flapping in front of face and cooing, and that was just his dad!

“Oh, he looks so grown up,” I gushed. There he stood in his shiny new shoes, with his shiny new shirt and jumper and grey shorts, all he needed was a satchel and a packed lunch box and the picture would be complete.

I doubt he really understood why his parents were going all goey over what was just a change of clothing but it really did mark a massive step in his life.

I wondered whether he would ever remember, nevermind appreciate, the carefree days of indoor play centres, endless picnics and play dates with his pals, before it all becomes about SATs tests, homework and exams.

I know reception year is hardly going to be taxing for him but nevertheless it is the start of his journey into formal education and the setting out on his path to who knows what.

Currently he is set on being a racing car driver or someone that catches dinosaurs, which I don’t believe there are any BTEC courses on currently.

Before he actually gets into class though we have the home visit to look forward to. I say look forward to, the house is clearly going to have to have a major overhaul if we are to impress. I was contemplating arranging to meet at a coffee shop instead but apparently that is not in the spirit of a home visit.

At least my appointment is relatively early in the morning so there will not be much time for the kids to wreak havoc and destroy the carefully arranged family photos and flower arrangements. An Ambi-Pur to cover the smell of Katie’s nappies and I think that should do it.

Granted Ben will wonder where all his toys have gone and why it is that the carpet is a different shade to normal but if we get those questions out of the way before the teacher arrives I think we may be able to pull off the right impression.

I did catch myself debating whether a homemade cake might be going a step too far.

I don’t want her to think I am some sort of suck up and there is a risk of food poisoning so on balance I might buy in a muffin or two.

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