Travelling with children

Life has been rather hectic recently in the Neat Freak household what with work deadlines, ongoing pre-schooler maladies and holiday preparations.

Hubby and I decided we couldn’t face the airport this year. Not after Mini-me ruined the return journeys of at least six surrounding rows of passengers on our last flight home.

After all who doesn’t enjoy being poked in the head and regaled with the entire score of Annie whilst in the air?!

And let’s face it the parental walk of shame through baggage claim is just not fun.

Instead we decided to dot several short UK-based breaks throughout the year in the hope that this would leave us more ‘refreshed’, save money and perhaps we’d get lucky and coincide one with the nation’s only week of summer weather.

Wishful thinking springs to mind eh!

What never ceases to amaze me as a parent of almost four years now is the fact that sub-consciously I think some small part of us still sees holidays through rose-tinted glasses as they used to be.

You know when you could read an entire book, enjoy a meal out without trashing a restaurant or terrorising your fellow diners and when you actually returned home relaxed and fully rejuvenated.

Heading off for a break with kids is, after all, in many ways just more of the same but in a different location.

You’re still up several times a night, you still spend the day running a fine line between nurse and waitress – mopping brows, rubbing bruised knees and furnishing meals and endless snacks – and you still have to endlessly clean up after your offspring.

Such as when Blue-eyed boy vomited up his entire guts all over the car at the very moment we turned into the drive of our recent cottage break.

Nothing like making a good first impression is there?! I mean they’d never seen a guest give a car seat a bath before…

Don’t get me wrong, holidays now are amazing for different reasons. Such as making wonderful memories with your children, having time to really enjoy with them (hopefully) without any pesky work worries and seeing their eyes widen with joy as they eat an ice-cream, build sandcastles or play with their kite on the beach.

But, as I prepare to unpack for four people after packing up for four in what seemed like the blink-of-an-eye ago, I wonder whether next time the suitcase comes out of the wardrobe I’ll be anticipating a break from the norm with realistic expectations…

Probably not!

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