Monday, 25 July 2011

The Summer Holidays!

I am so relieved that the summer holidays are here! I am really looking forward to them.  I'm looking forward to slower starts and spending time with my boys. My husband has 2 weeks off and we will be spending some quality time with one another.  However I've not always felt like this.  A few years ago I hated the thought of the summer holidays...

When I just had children under 5 the prospect of 6 or sometimes 8 weeks with no scheduled activities I found really daunting.  Those with older children would be off on active pursuits with their families and I found I was just left with nothing to do.  The toddler groups would be finished and there would seem to be endless activities on for school children but nothing for those with younger children.  The break of the holidays didn't really feel like a break but a time of isolation.  Everyone seemed to being going away on great holidays together and we just didn't have the money.  Every time I took the children out, the places would be packed and I would worry about my younger children getting knocked over by the bigger children or that I would loose them in the crowds.  It was nice to have friends over but you do go a bit stir crazy if you don't leave the house!

However at the end of the school holidays it was never as bad as I thought it was going to be, we did manage to leave the house and we did enjoy those days.  I found quieter times of the day to go out and enjoy activities, I found children's centres that opened during the holidays.  After doing some research I did find suitable things for us to do as a family with children under 5 and the time passed quickly.  I tried not to resent the fact that everything stopped for the holidays but make the most of the season.
During our holidays now, I don't have everyday planned out nor do we have this amazing budget to afford all these wonderful activities on offer.  I asked my children what they would like to do over the holidays and they want to play lego!

When they finish school, they are really tired so bedtime starts in our house from 6pm onwards (there is 4 of them to get ready, so takes a while). This means their dinner is at 4.30pm.  There isn't a lot of time for them just to be lost in play. The holidays is the time the children re-discover all their toys.  I also find this a good time to clear though them and start thinking about Birthdays/Christmas.  In our family this is when most of the birthdays fall so I tend to get everything planned out now, in terms of presents/toys.

The first week does seem to be about the older ones re-establishing the pecking order, as the younger ones are used to having the daytime to themselves but we get through the bickering and balance does get restored.  They do get on but when tempers start to flare its time to go out, bike riding, walking, football anything to burn off energy.  I have also learnt to have babysitters so I can plan an activity with just one child or the older children.  Giving them each special time also helps calm them down and appreciate one another.

I find that with school life, my children can be slack on our family values so this is a good time to re-establish boundaries etc.  We go through our values in the morning during bible time but the days themselves, present lots of training opportunities and reminders for when they are actually faced with the problems.  I just pray for the grace to train rather than getting caught up in the fighting.

I am looking forward to these holidays and if you're struggling with them, pray for a heart for this season or take comfort knowing that this is a short season and normality will soon return.

No comments:

Post a Comment