Getting ready for holiday in our house is a nightmare. Although I’m sure it’s the same for many people, it’s hard for me to explain just how hard my husband works – and therefore how little he’s around to help with things.
He gets up at 6, goes to work at 7, comes home at 7 and often goes back to work at 7.45 until about 10 and then carries on working in front of the TV until about midnight. Or sometimes he goes back to the office from 7.45 until midnight. Sometimes he’s travelling and gets home about midnight. Once or twice a month he stays away overnight.
In the run-up to a holiday, he ramps it up even more. If that’s even possible. He doesn’t give himself the odd night off. It’s full-on work right until departure.
Which leaves me somewhat on my own preparing for holiday. And getting ready for our recent holiday in Padstow was worse than ever. We set off on a Friday and I worked Monday to Wednesday. I had the three kids at home, of course. My husband was working away Wednesday and Thursday – yes, he was away until the DAY BEFORE WE WENT ON HOLIDAY. Oh, and our house is on the market and we’ve got to keep it clean and tidy – no piles of clothes and toiletries collecting on the bedroom floor, no open, half full suitcases lying around and no clothes horses full of damp washing hanging around. We had viewings on the Wednesday AND Thursday – and one on Saturday while we were away, so we had to leave the house immaculate when we set off on holiday too.
It’s all a tall order for a Mummy to deal with single-handedly. I’m good at organising the kids and remembering what we need to take, but it’s very time-consuming and I’m not so good at putting things in the suitcase.
But I wasn’t alone! Because I’ve got Mummy’s little helper!
Every time we go on holiday, my daughter begs to be allowed to pack the suitcase. But, as Daddy normally does it at midnight, she doesn’t get the chance. But this time I left her to it. Because she absolutely loves it. She’s so organised.
She started off by getting her own clothes out – a pile of shorts, Tshirts, cardigans, leggings, pyjamas and dresses. She counted them all up carefully and matched them up into outfits to be sure she had enough. Then she folded them into careful little piles and packed them beautifully. Far more beautifully than I could do – or her Daddy.
Then she started on mine. She called me to inform me I hadn’t got any pants. She knew exactly what I needed and how much of it.
She got her brothers’ clothes out of the wardrobe, tutting slightly at them for their lack of interest in packing, but mainly just loving organising them. She’s amazing – she’s the only person who can tell whose clothes are whose most of the time.
I think Daddy might find himself out a job now – and I’m sure he will be quite pleased. With all the pressure of getting ready for holiday, Mummy’s little helper took a real weight off my shoulders.