Sometimes Hampton Gets Caught Being A Dragon

I am trying to gather things for a craft party NG is attending at the weekend when NW walks through the door. “There’s a strange boy at nursery,” I say to my husband, who has had a busy day, followed by a two and a half hour commute.  “I think NG likes him. I need to speak to Jackie Paper.”

He puts his bag down, kisses me and gets a glass of water. “What?”

Jackie is the owner of the nursery and a very fair lady. I know if I told her that a boy named Hampton (I’ve never been entirely sure about surnames as first names, though Ryan as in Gosling is the obvious exception) has been insisting and then convincing the others that dragons exist, she would listen sympathetically. I fill NW in.

“It doesn’t sound too terrible to me,” he says. “Dragons are fun, aren’t they?”

Here be dragons.

“But I think NG has a little crush on him. Apparently he encourages all the children to believe that dragons are as common as, I don’t know … cats … and then gets them to pretend to be MAGIC dragons that can do things like fly, and cast spells and … um, shape shift. She actually said, ‘sometimes Hampton gets caught being a dragon’ like it was the best thing ever.” I gaze at him with a mix of fear and awe. “I mean, I’m not sure I want her first little boyfriend to be into, you know, magic, as in non-existent, fake stuff. Artificial. Made up.”

NW looks at me steadily. “I think you’re overreacting just a bit. And anyway, Dragons are made up.”

“Exactly,” I say, failing to find any ribbon or glue in the places they usually are. “NG is already confused about whether or not crisp packets can talk. Dragons and toddler boyfriends are complications we don’t really need.” I actually wring my hands.

NW sighs. “She’s not even three yet; I really don’t think we need to worry about her being corrupted by a boy her own age, even if he is into fire breathing.” He can see I’m not convinced. “OK. What else can she do at nursery that keeps her entertained?”

I have a think. The only thing NG ever really tells me she enjoys after her one day a week at nursery is eating raisins. And Pyjama Drama; she likes that. Oh, and gardening. “She likes watching things grow!” I exclaim. There is an allotment 15 minutes’ walk away and, “on Wednesdays, now it’s spring, her class walks in a line to look at the mud, which will – every key worker hopes fervently – eventually sprout things.”

“So it’s ok to walk in a crocodile but not be a dragon?” NW quips.

“That’s not actually funny in any way,” I say. “The garden is amazing for children, though. It’s full of spinny things and streamers and things they can hit to take their frustrations out and make noise.” I think of the Duchess of Cambridge and wonder aloud to NW whether or not she will bring George along to the Magic Garden she’s opening this week at Hampton Court.

“Oh yes,” he says. “I read about that. I think it’s got a dragon in it.”

“Oh,” I say.

“You still look worried,” he says, pouring a glass of wine and handing it to me.

I sigh. “It’s just this boy thing with Hampton. I know it’s stupid because she’s only two still and it means nothing but I’ve just realised there will be a day when we’ll have to deal with boyfriends. Or girlfriends. Whatever … and ‘those’ feelings with her.”

“Yep,” he says.

“And when that time comes, I know we’ll cope with it. It’s scary because it’ll be unchartered territory for all of us … but I suppose it’ll be fine.”

“Sort of … ‘Here be dragons’, you mean?”

“Very good,” I say and reach up to the cupboard over the sink because she is only two still and for tomorrow I need some string and sealing wax and other fancy stuff.



Characters are abbreviated as follows:

NW – not William (husband and father)

NG – not George (daughter, sister and two and three quarter year old)

NC – not Charlotte (son, brother and seven month old)

NL – not Lupo (a Labrador)

Right Royal Mother is a FINALIST for ‘Best New Blog’ in the 2016 MAD Blog Awards – the UK’s biggest and most exciting awards for parent blogs. Just six out of 8,000 blogs are selected, so I am over the moon about it. If you like RRM, I would LOVE you to give ‘ordinary royalty’ your vote!


A Mum Track Mind


  1. May 3, 2016 / 7:05 am

    Being a parent – so much to worry about! No friends, odd friends, imaginary friends – we have been there. #TwinklyTuesday

    • May 3, 2016 / 7:26 am

      Oh I know. And I didn’t think I’d have to worry about boys for a LOOONG time! #twinklyTuesday

  2. May 3, 2016 / 7:20 am

    You, my lovely, tell a story oh so well! You really are an insanely good writer and I just adore reading your posts. #chucklemums

    • May 3, 2016 / 7:27 am

      Thank you Rach – that is incredibly lovely of you! xx #chucklemums

  3. May 3, 2016 / 8:01 am

    Oh I remember these feelings and then ‘boom’ boyfriend is staying every weekend – OK not quite as quick as that but it feels like it! I love NG’s little fascination with the Dragon Boy – it could be worse! #chucklemums

  4. May 3, 2016 / 8:41 am

    Oh goodness I definitely don’t want to think about these things . Shame two-year-olds don’t have facebook or you could check him out, do a wee stalk. You just know that’s going to be the case when they’re 15… Thanks for joining #chucklemums!

  5. May 3, 2016 / 10:23 am

    Hampton sounds brilliant and exactly the sort of person I would like to be friends with! Thanks for linking lovely #chucklemums

  6. May 3, 2016 / 3:06 pm

    ‘Dragons and toddler boyfriends are complications we don’t really need’ – hahaha! Quite right!!! My toddler is taken with two boys at nursery no less – can’t stop talking about them! I have investigated further and been informed that they are the two loveliest boys there; great. However she has also befriended a little girl – they both ran towards me at the end of the day, holding hands and laughing in a…manic way. A manic, crazy, naughty way. And then they both emptied pots of glitter on the floor, followed by more worrying laughter. So with us the boyfriend(s!!) are not a problem, but the girlfriend might be… Good luck with the dragon breather. #chucklemums

    • May 3, 2016 / 7:08 pm

      Amazing!! NG also has two girlfriends who are very naughty and she tells me about what they have done as we walk home and always, somehow, manages to paint herself in a very favourable light. I’m not sure I believe it!! Good luck with your girl crew … maybe I should be thankful for the dragon breather 🙂 #chucklemums

  7. May 4, 2016 / 4:01 pm

    Ah brilliant, love this! So much to worry about as a parent, even when they’re a young age…fantastic writing as ever xxx #bloggerclubuk

  8. May 4, 2016 / 7:14 pm

    Aw I suppose NG is starting to choose her own friends now. At least Hampton is into dragons and not drugs! #BloggerClubUK

    • May 4, 2016 / 8:41 pm

      Yes, I think so … thanks for persevering with the comments; very much appreciated! 🙂 #bloggerclubuk

  9. May 4, 2016 / 7:22 pm

    Dragons are better than Voldemort! At least he isn’t convincing them to steal anything from nursery. When I decided to become a mummy I entered into the land of constant worry. There is always something else that gets thrown at us isn’t there! 🙂 #bloggerclubuk

    • May 4, 2016 / 8:40 pm

      There definitely is … I didn’t think it would be so all-consuming! #bloggerclubuk

  10. May 5, 2016 / 10:18 am

    We haven’t really had the boy thing yet, although there’s a boy at school who adores BB and hangs off her every word! #coolmumclub

  11. May 7, 2016 / 11:47 am

    As a child I used to play with an imaginary dragon inspired by the Disney movie Pete’s Dragon. I think it is good to hear they are interacting. Dragons sound much more creative than Mummies and Daddies. #fortheloveofBLOG

    • May 7, 2016 / 2:43 pm

      It does, doesn’t it? I’m not really bothered to be honest; he seems like a lovely boy and yes, I agree – much more imaginative than Bing, say! #fortheloveofBLOG

  12. May 7, 2016 / 7:46 pm

    Oh crumbs, there is so much to worry about isn’t there!? Hopefully if the crush is still on Hampton in 14 years time, he’ll have moved on from dragons. Now, on to the important question… what or who has give her the idea that crisp packets can talk? #fortheloveofBlOG

  13. May 8, 2016 / 2:11 pm

    This definitely shows a lot of creativity & a wonderful imagination! I don’t want to think about the boyfriend / girlfriend phase yet – that will add a lot of complication to life!! Thanks so much for sharing with #bloggerclubuk & best of luck to you in the MADs x

  14. May 10, 2016 / 6:59 am

    I’m already thinking about these days, what sort of friends my little one will make – will they be nice to her etc…It’s quite nice that you’ve only got dragons to worry about for now, much better than her being a teenager and worrying about boys. Thanks so much for joining our party at #fortheloveofBLOG, hope you can join us next week. Claire x

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