The notion of summer conjures up leisurely images of relaxing on a pool side lounger, a book in hand and a cool drink within arm’s reach.
Like a lot of things in life, once you enter the realm of parent-dom, that notion has an expiry date. I do cling to the hope that we will return to this glorious state once the toddlers are no longer toddlers, but that is a bittersweet thought and I don’t dwell on it too much.
Any holidays we have embarked upon optimistically with small babies, toddlers and pre-schoolers have been true tests of patience and made us realise the grass is greener at home for the moment. In fact, I even discussed this in a newspaper article written by Office Mum. With rose-tinted sunglasses firmly in place we jetted off to the Canary Islands not once, but twice, with babies. I like to relive my mistakes it would appear. My babies did not like the heat, the pool, the change to their daily routine and the days were pretty much spent tag-teaming indoors with the baby and outdoors at the pool with the 5 year old (where she was 5 of course).
With the little boy being quite a spirited and energetic child (to put a positive spin on it) we were unanimous in the decision that this year we stay put. We do have a few nights in a family friendly hotel in Cork planned in the next while so clearly we haven’t completely given into pessimism!
However the hankering for some adult down time still persists. So when it seemed every male in a 5 mile radius was packing his tri-colour flag and setting off to France for the Euros, I encouraged the hubby to go too. He was a bit taken aback, but the seed was planted. Discussions were held with would-be travel companions and then late one night a text message pinged in from a friend “The missus gave me the green light!”, and off they went.
In return, I booked a 4 night break to the sun with a friend, which is still looming in the distance. It’s win-win, neither of us are gone for more than 4 nights so it’s manageable when you’re the one at home with the munchkins but long enough when you’re away to really relax into it. He came home worse for wear but with memories of good time to buoy him along. And then he started to realise I still had my trip to look forward to… So now himself and a couple of mates are off to Madrid to a match later on in the year for a couple of nights. Which means I am free to peruse other opportunities should they cross my path.
I am very much looking forward to a time when we can holiday properly as a family again, and also when the two of us might enjoy a long weekend break away together but for now the kiddies just aren’t the sort that are easily left so this works for us, for now. Having something to look forward to (or impatiently cross the days off in the calendar..) makes me a more pleasant person to be around, so while this arrangement isn’t for everyone, don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. We all do need a break, whether we want to admit it or not. And I sure as hell am going to make the most of mine.
Any ideas where I can go next???
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