Summer Holidays

Mark Parenting, Uncategorised 3 Comments

time you enjoy wasting isnt wasted timeThe impending summer holidays mark the end of what may have been the longest and most protracted gardening leave on record.

Who knew being a full-time stay-at-home dad came with a twelve month notice period? Not Janet, that’s for sure.

That’s not to say the last twelve months have been wasted. Within the window of school runs I’ve managed to finish the first year of my degree, helped out at the boys’ school one day a week, honed my house-husbandry skills to a (relatively) acceptable level and only occasionally taken an afternoon nap.

Wow, Janet’s right, that does sound remarkably like the lifestyle of someone retired. It also explains why, when asked what I’d like for my birthday, all I could think of was a tabard with a front pocket to hold my clothes pegs. I really do need to reassess my life choices.

But with the boys now settled and flourishing at school, and with the confidence that I can study in the evenings and at weekends without falling behind, it’s time to *gulp* get a full-time job. You know, one of those proper ones. Outside of the house. That pays actual money. With adult interaction, and *shudder* responsibility!?

And it’s for that reason I’m determined to make the most of the next six weeks, because if I have any regrets from the previous year it’s that I haven’t always appreciated how lucky I am to spend so much time with the kids. Not just during the school holidays, but the memorably mundane moments too.

swinging on barsLike swinging on the bars we pass on the way to school every day and counting snails on the way home. Guessing what Luca ate for his lunch and the vegetables Sonny didn’t. Running round the house playing bad guys and explaining for the umpteenth time why they have to change out of their uniforms before they so much as look at the spaghetti bolognese I’ve made for dinner.

Moments of monotony that at the time seem so trivial, yet with hindsight make for some of the happiest of memories.

So when I was asked what my summer mantra would be as part of Post-it Brand’s ‘Make it Happen‘ campaign, it only seemed apt to go with,

time you enjoy wasting isn’t wasted time‘.

Because if they’d rather continue their cushion fight than go the library, then that’s what we’ll do. If they want to chase each other round the house with pants on their head rather than use the play-doh they’d asked me to get out only minutes earlier, so be it. And if they want to watch videos on YouTube of some stranger playing the same game they could be playing themselves, then I’ll put down my phone and watch it with them.

This is to be their summer holidays in the truest sense. A planning committee of two for which I’m but a facilitator. Well, apart from the two week Mini Olympians holiday club I’ve already booked them on. Oh c’mon, six weeks is a LONG time!

As part of the ‘Make it Happen’ campaign I was also asked back in March to set myself a few goals (which you can read here). Well what do you know, I’ve only gone and achieved them. I know, I’m as surprised as you are!

The first was to redesign my blog. It’s still a work in progress and a little rough around the edges, but not nearly as rough as the coding that lay behind my last one.

So many emergency fixes and workarounds had I inflicted on it that Google was refusing to accept it as a website let alone one with content. I was never more than one errant line of code away from a terminal crash, and by the end even the error logs opened with ‘WTF?’, and ended with a shrug of the shoulders emoticon.

The second, and by far the most daunting, was to find the bottom of the washing basket. I’ll not lie, that proved far harder than I’d imagined, particularly as Janet kept insisting that she and the boys wear clean clothes. How was that helping?

But, at 2:40pm on Wednesday 8th July 2015, with head bowed, a minutes silence was observed for those dirty socks lost in the great battle of washing mountain. I’d achieved the impossible. The war on wearing things twice won. The washing basket, empty.

What? That small pile of clothes hidden in the corner of the bathroom? Nope, no idea what you’re talking about.

Now, I did mention in the last post that if I achieved both of the above I might try persuading the boys to take some of their pictures off the dining room wall. It’s with regret that not only have I not achieved this, but the contagion has now spread into the front room. What can you do? No seriously, that’s not a rhetorical question, what can I do because I’m about to lose my halls, stairs and landing to the artistically challenged!

For more information on the Post-it Brand’s ‘Make It Happen’ campaign, visit, or search social media for #makeithappen @PostItUK.

This is a sponsored post. All words and opinions are honest and my own.

Comments 3

  1. A tabard with a front pocket to hold the pegs?
    I’ve been a housewife for, erm, a few years and I have never thought of that. Genius. I’m ordering one. Ta.
    Enjoy your time with your boys because all too soon they will develop facial hair and attitudes. Oh, and they will nick your Lynx, your car and what’s left of your sanity. 🙂

    1. Post

      Thanks, I will do.
      It seems that everyone assumed my request for a tabard was a joke? Who would joke about a tabard? If you do find a good one let me know. It appears I’m going to have to buy one myself.

      1. A tabard is no joking matter.
        I’ve had a few tabards in my time (remember, I was a cleaner) but while the pocket was stuffed with all manner of stuff – dusters, bog roll holders, fluffy Polo mints etc – I never thought to put my pegs in it.
        Maybe Santa will bring you one for Christmas?

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