The house has been very very very quiet this week. Shhhh. Even the tapping of my keyboard is echoing loudly. It’s a sure sign that school has started, term two is underway, and our house’s two noisiest occupants are not here for most of the day. Ahhhh.
I prepared them on Sunday night that they would probably have to write a story at school the next day: what I did on my holidays. Don’t you always have to do that on your first day back? Or has the curriculum changed in the thirty years since I’ve been to primary school?
I talked them through what we’d done over the past two weeks, just as a helpful reminder. Is it just me who thinks it’s a tad annoying when you do a host of fabulous fun-packed, well-enjoyed, life-enhancing activities over the holidays, and then find out they’ve written three hundred words on the one night they were allowed to stay up late and watch the football on TV?
Considering we’ve been lucky enough to have some pretty awesome holidays in the last few years – including a month campervanning around Western Australia and a fortnight living it up in California – I think it speaks volumes that one of my best holidays is probably the one that we just had.
Where was it? Well, we didn’t actually go away. It was just a week off work during the school holidays. And what made it so good? Oh, so many things.
No school and no work which meant no work email, no stress, no rushing, no packing school lunch boxes, no washing school uniforms, no tantrums over putting on socks, no having to remember sports gear on that day or band stuff on this day, no rushing out the door and halfway down the street only to find the school bags are still sitting in the hall inside the front door, no trying to answer emails with one hand while cooking dinner with the other, no… well, I think you get the idea.
Added to that the fact we didn’t go away, so no need to organise a holiday, no trawling the internet for accommodation, no packing bags, no having to find the camping stuff in the depths of the shed, no having to pack everything all back where it came from at the end of the holiday and no need to do the guzillion loads of washing that going away always seems to necessitate when you get home.
But the absolute best bit? The best bit was the afternoon naps. Is there anything more holiday-like than lying down on the couch for a sneaky siesta after lunch? And now the kids will sit there and read quietly for an hour I don’t even have to convince them they need to nap too. In fact, I am now officially the only one left in our house who still regularly needs an afternoon nap.
Of course, I’m only joking. Not about needing a nap – that’s serious – but about the best bit of the holiday.
The best thing about the holiday really was spending relaxed time with the kids. A la Enid Blyton we named ourselves the Terrific Trio, upgraded to the Fantabulous Four when my husband was home. Ah, by jolly hockey sticks, it was fun.
Visits to the park, the gardens, the skatepark, the beach. Hanging out with family and friends and cousins. The sunshine, the glorious Autumn weather with clear blue skies, without the paranoid need to reapply sunscreen every two hours. What a beautiful fun holiday to remember and appreciate. I was actually even quite sad to drop the poppets back at school on Monday morning.
So there’s my back to school essay. Turns out the kids didn’t even have to do one. I guess the curriculum has moved on after all.
“I do love the beginning of the hols,’ said Julian. “They always seem to stretch out ahead for ages and ages.” “They go so nice and slowly at first,’ said Anne, his little sister. “Then they start to gallop.” Five Go Off In A Caravan