We don’t have a Costume Department.
And schools seem to think that inside every home, there’s a Costume Department.
Arabella is performing her Group Performance and her Individual Performance in front of the Board of Studies on Friday. This is a very nerve-wracking experience and will make for a stressful week where we will tiptoe lightly around her and do our best to not make any sudden noises. But in the meantime, she needs two costumes. In one performance she is playing a male and needs a suit. Knowing I don’t have a room set aside for costumes, I suggested she wear her father’s trousers.
‘Don’t be silly mum, they’re too big, I can’t wear those’.
‘Well what does the school expect, that mother’s breed daughters the size of their fathers? Of course they don’t fit but why would I have a male business suit that fits you in my wardrobe?’
‘Mum, this is serious, I have to bring in the costumes tomorrow. The teacher needs to see what we’re all wearing’.
‘So it’s 8.30 at night, you’ve only just told me and I now need to think of who I know that’s a tall willowy male with stick legs and no bottom with a spare suit’.
‘Archie has a suit doesn’t he?’
‘Yes, but Archie has taken his one and only suit to his mate’s place for their rehearsal because tomorrow the two of them are performing Sinatra songs so he needs his suit for that performance’.
‘What about the neighbours?’
‘I’m not going door knocking at this hour of the night asking for suits.’
‘Well what shirt am I going to wear? I need a white button-up shirt. Do you have one?’
‘When have you ever known me to work in an office? Of course I don’t have a white shirt’. What about a pair of my black pants and…’
‘That won’t look right’.
‘And you could wear it with your white blouse that…’
‘That blouse doesn’t have a top button and I’m wearing a tie’.
‘Whose tie? Where are you getting a tie? Do you have a tie?’
‘Archie gave me one of his old school ties’.
‘Well Archie wore white shirts to school. We must have one of those somewhere. Check in the ironing pile’.
‘What about the jodhpurs?’ Jodhpurs? I was reeling. In Arabella’s other performance she is riding a horse out on a fox hunt.
‘Mum, I need jodhpurs’.
‘When have you ever seen anyone in this family on a horse? Of course there’s no jodhpurs’.
‘I can wear the same white shirt and I’ll take off the tie because I need a cravat. Does dad have a cravat?’
‘A cravat? He’s not Matt Preston‘.
‘The script says I’m wearing a cravat. Do you have a scarf? I could make a scarf look like a cravat’. I found a scarf and gave it to her.
‘That won’t do, mum. It’s too long. Look how bulky it is down my shirt’.
‘Well you’re wearing a jacket, put the bulk of it down your back’.
We were both exasperated. Arabella is challenging but resourceful. While her own mother was unable to help with any of the things she needed, others came to her rescue. A friend has a brother who’s on the small and thin side and he loaned her his suit. She borrowed a white shirt from another friend’s mother. A friend of hers is in the school’s Equestrian Team and she let Arabella wear her boots, jodhpurs and riding jacket. She found she had a scarf of her own that she could use as a cravat. Thank goodness for community!
Meanwhile, Archie has performance assessments this week. He needs some props. If you can imagine it, my Props Department is smaller than my Costume Department. Here we go again.
But I do feel for Arabella. The people on the Board of Studies are scary creatures and performing in front of them is not pleasant. I made her a delicious dessert.
Strawberry Gelato with Chantilly Cream
This is not really a recipe. The strawberry gelato I made was from the Queen Make at Home Gelato range that is simple and easy to make. In the last part of the churning process I added some finely chopped strawberries. I served the gelato with some smashed strawberries mixed with a little icing sugar, a splash of lemon juice and some finely chopped mint. I topped the gelato with Chantilly cream, some strawberries and a sprig of fresh mint. Arabella loved it!
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