Friday, 24 July 2015

Holiday guilt

Today marks the end of the first week of the school summer holidays. One down and six to go and already I'm feeling guilty because we haven't done very much. This is the last summer before my baby boy (no longer even vaguely a baby at almost five years old) starts school and the school holidays is all we have. This is the summer I planned to make the most of before he's away from me five days a week. And already I feel like I've failed.

We've had a quiet week. We've walked that tentative line between our days being relaxing and boring. And there's the guilt again. Our days should surely be filled with days out and craft projects. Seven weeks of full-on fun. Again, of course, social media has a lot to answer for - a picture painted of everyone else having a sparkling summer full of activity-packed days complete with Instagrammed photos to show for it. 

We've had just one 'day out' this week and it consisted of approximately two hours in Reading. Of course, with the train journey there and back and the walk to/from the railway station, it felt like a full day even though it wasn't. The train journey's always part of the fun for X though. We managed dinosaur mini golf, an ice cream and a ride for X on a pretend train before getting back on the real one to go home. 

Other than Reading, we've been at home (or at least in our small home town) all week. Two trips to the park, two coffee shop visits, one swimming lesson, a lot of playing with Lego and more chocolate and television than 'good' parents are probably meant to allow. Not to mention me distracting myself with my iPhone whilst the TV has been on instead of using the time to scrub the floors or make a lentil casserole or whatever Good Mothers are supposed to do. And, to top it off, zero craft activities carried out so far - unless we're allowed to include drawing a pooing caterpillar? 

But is it such a bad thing? For starters, does my child need to be entertained with craft activities and days out everyday? He doesn't mind not being out all the time. In fact he's enjoyed just playing with his toys. I might have been bored by the tenth game of Snap, but he wasn't. It's just me who thinks we should be doing more, not my child. Furthermore, we have six more weeks left until school starts. Six. There are plenty of days left for adventure and days out. And there's plenty I plan to do with my boy in those days ahead. But not all of the days; maybe not even most of the days. Whilst play dates and visits to a number of attractions (including re-use of that Legoland pass) are definitely on the cards, so too are more days of relaxing at home and playing with toys. And today we're baking cookies! Not to tick off the boxes on a Pinterest ideas board, but because X wants to make them. It may be the only vaguely crafty activity we do all summer - and that's ok too. 

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