Surviving the six week holidays….

I’ve really struggled to blog since we returned home from our Summer holiday, partly due to the hell of still working my way through the mountain of laundry, the inevitable post-holiday exhaustion and the fact that the children have been absolute terrors. And partly due to the fact that I have been dealing with some personal issues, some really difficult health problems, and I’ve struggled massively with the knowledge that, as honest as I try to be in my blog, I’m not quite ready to share that with you all just yet, I guess that time will come.

There have been several times when I have sat down to blog, when I have been hit by a bolt of inspiration or shared a moment that I was desperate to document, and within moments of sneaking away into the office, it would start. The children’s daily mission to send me absolutely bat sh*t crazy, screaming hysterically as though they had broken every single bone in their body, only for me to go running into the lounge to find them battering each other around the head with Baby Annabelle, spilling their juice across my brand new cream carpets, or simply smearing themselves with the closest thing to hand. And I’ve realised that while the children are home, without my safety net of school or nursery to give me just one moments peace, blogging really has had to take a back seat over the Summer.

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And in all honesty, we haven’t actually done a lot for the most part of the holidays. After the disaster involving our car, I endured eighteen long days of hell, completely housebound, as my back wasn’t up to even attempting to push the double buggy and there was no way in the world I was going to risk taking these four on public transport!! On the days when the weather was kind to us we played in the garden, ate copious amounts of ice cream, splashed in the paddling pool and ignored the angry shouts of the old witch next door telling the children to “Be quiet!” every two minutes.

On the days when the weather wasn’t so kind, of which there were many, we resorted to baking, to watching movies in our pyjamas, to Cbeebies, edible bribes, and when all else failed and I really did get desperate….the dreaded Playdoh!!!

Anyone with four children will agree when I tell you it’s hard every single day with a large family, and yet being house bound over the Summer holidays is definitely one of the hardest challenges I have faced as a parent. As much as I joke about the horrors of it all, towards the end it really did start to get me down and more than once I found myself wishing the time away so that the children would be back at school and nursery. It was at times like that when I felt like a terrible parent, the kind of parent that I always swore I would never be, and I would desperately try to claw back my sanity, hold on to every moment and remind myself that actually, these days are so precious, that in no time at all the days of having three at home would be over. And with that thought, and the days where by some sweet miracle they all fell asleep in the warmth of the conservatory, it got me through.

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Last weekend we had a much needed break with the wedding of two of our best friends where Gaz had the honour of being the best man. With him on the top table and nobody reminding me that I can’t handle my drink, I make no apologies for the fact that I got absolutely steaming drunk, even if it did result in more than a few embarrassing tumbles on the dance floor! We actually had an amazing day, with some of our favourite people, and if ever there was a time when we needed that boost it was absolutely now!!

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With the return of the car, and of Lewis who has been with his Dad alternate weeks over the summer, we have been able to get out and about this week and enjoy the return of the warmer weather. We have built sandcastles on the beach, rode donkeys along the shore, eaten ice creams on the promenade and all of a sudden life doesn’t seem so tough. Time as a family always reminds me of what is important, not to sweat the small stuff and that together, we will get through just about anything. And as hard as this month has been in some ways, in others we have been truly blessed.

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I doubt that there is a parent on the planet who hasn’t found the Summer holidays difficult at times, who hasn’t cursed the fact that they can’t even use the bathroom in peace, who hasn’t despaired at the state of the house or the fact that the children can’t seem to play nicely for more than two minutes before one of them is throttling the other. Who hasn’t made countless fake phone calls to their other halves while shouting, “What’s that? There’s big trouble when you get home?”, who hasn’t slammed shut the windows in order to scream at their kids without the neighbours eavesdropping, who hasn’t gone to bed each night thinking please, dear God, let tomorrow be a better day. And that doesn’t make us terrible parents, it simply makes us human. Because as much as us adults tend to focus on the hard times, in all honesty we have done some really lovely, exciting and fun things together. Looking at it that way, the Summer of 2016 will be one that we all look back on fondly.

I read a really lovely quote today that summed up the holidays perfectly. It said,

“We didn’t realise we were making memories, we just knew we were having fun.”

And I think that right now, more than ever, that is just about the most we can hope for.

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13 Comments

  1. September 1, 2016 / 3:21 pm

    Oh Laura, you make me want to both laugh and cry with you! I’m sorry to hear you have had personal and health issues, I have health problems too and it really does compound the effect of the kids being determined to drive you bat sh*t crazy! I guess I just feel heartened that someone else is going through it, especially someone whose family look so perfect and beautiful. That those tender moments are countered with smearing themselves with yoghurt and hitting each other around the head with toys, makes me feel a tad better when mine are about to tip the trampoline over because they are wrestling on it. Again. So thanks for sharing this, and hope it all gets better soon! #EatSleepBlogRT

  2. September 1, 2016 / 6:56 pm

    Ah hun it sounds really tough having 4 to look after, but you couldn’t tell from the pictures you were having a bad time. I really hope that you are okay though. It’ll be the end of the holidays before you know it, and the children will be back at school. I hope that find your blogging mojo again it’s difficult when it disappears. Thanks for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

    • Laura Dove
      September 4, 2016 / 6:14 pm

      Thank you, I’m hoping that this week we can get back to normal and I can get back into the swing of things! The kids had an amazing holiday, even on the days when I didn’t! xx

  3. September 2, 2016 / 8:05 pm

    Sorry to hear that you are having personal and health issues – I hope everything gets sorted for you soon THe school holidays are definitely a trial for all parents. You are right though that in the years to come we will all look back with fond memories and forget all about the days we shouted! #EatSleepBlogRT

    • Laura Dove
      September 4, 2016 / 6:13 pm

      Thank you. School holidays are just exhausting more than anything, I feel like I need a holiday now just to recover! xx

  4. September 3, 2016 / 11:53 am

    Oh bless you! I hope you’re ok lovely! I found it hard with three, never mind four.

    Thank you for linking up with #justanotherlinky

    • Laura Dove
      September 4, 2016 / 6:12 pm

      We survived it, that’s the main thing! It’s hard work though isn’t it? xx

  5. September 4, 2016 / 6:27 pm

    Oh I can completly relate to this post Laura. Having two little ones home over summer together has been so hard at times, I dont even know how you begin to do it with four! All of those thoughts and emotions youve described Ive been through at some point which has made me feel so guilty fo wishing away the time and days. But like you said, we are only human and im sure its pretty normal too 🙂 Thanks for sharing this on #MarvMondays. Emilyq

    • Laura Dove
      September 5, 2016 / 7:04 pm

      Thank you Emily. It’s so good to know that others struggle in the holidays. It’s very easy to paint a picture of having a blast through the summer but actually, even on the days when we have an amazing time together, they are ALWAYS hard work! There’s never a moment when I have been able to relax or just sit back and enjoy the moment, I’ve been running after one of them or frantically buttering sandwiches for a picnic or extracting sand from some bodily orifice. It’s all good fun, of course I wouldn’t change it, but I’m more than ready to get back into a routine now and have a rest before October half term comes around!! xx

  6. September 5, 2016 / 9:13 pm

    I would so have to agree with you that the summer time has been hard this year. I don’t remember it being this hard last year but last fall was also the first time I had all of them in some kind of schooling even if only a few hours a day. I too have been dealing with a lot of personal issues…mostly my marriage which I am quite certain is not going to last another year but I am trying my hardest to get that idea out of my head. When you said that you haven’t blogged about something yet because you aren’t ready…I can totally relate to that as I too haven’t been completely honest about what’s going on in my life. I think mostly because I don’t want people who I associate with in this small ass town reading about it and then talking about it behind my back. I hope you are ok and if you ever need to reach out please don’t hesitate to message me on Facebook or email me domesticatedmomster@gmail.com and I also use What’s App. Thank you for linking up with #momsterslink and remember … One moment at a time.

    • Laura Dove
      September 8, 2016 / 8:30 am

      Oh Trista, I’m so sorry to hear that. Life is tough isn’t it? I hope that if it’s what you want, you can work through it and get your marriage back on track. You have always sounded so happy together, I guess things can change. I really struggle with having to stay silent about a major part of my life right now, my parents are away for another few weeks and it would be wrong of me to be sharing something so personal when I haven’t spoken to my own parents about it. I have always prided myself on being honest in my blog and yet I’m sure I’ll know when I’m ready! Thank you for that, I will be in touch. xxx

  7. October 10, 2016 / 8:25 am

    You’ve survived so I guess that makes you a hero, doesn’t it? Hehe X

    • Laura Dove
      October 10, 2016 / 9:37 am

      I guess it does!! xx

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