I don’t know about you, but my kids are knackered!
I said to them both this morning ‘we just need to get through this week, then you get a break’.
My six year old can never decide what he wants for breakfast, he hates getting dressed, he forgets to brush his hair…but this morning it all felt like it was ten times harder. He loves school, he loves after school care and today he wanted none of it!
My 12 year old is pretty good at getting himself ready and off to school, but I can see tiredness in his eyes, there’s a little bit of the sparkle gone, he’s a little glazed over and its pretty clear he needs a rest.
Why are they so tired?
We already know the answer to that. Its go go go every day, even the weekends are packed with sports and outings and activities. For us its footy practice or soccer practice (which I always end up calling footy as well and it gets me in trouble Every. Single. Time. But it is footy in the UK right?).
Its swimming and play dates and the rare sit down meal at the dinner table – a meal I have managed to cook.
But today, this week, I really feel like its time for a rest.
Are you feeling it too? If your children are throwing almighty tantrums, or falling in a heap on the floor, crying for no reason, then I imagine we are all in the same boat.
Its end of term exhaustion, its not their fault and they need a break. The only thing you can do to help them is validate their feelings, give them lots of cuddles and get them to bed early.
Never fear, the holidays are here
The thing I love about the school holidays is the not worrying about if there’s a clean school uniform ready each day. My son is in Year 6 and has a special ‘Year 6 shirt’ and he wants to wear it EVERY DAY, but he’s also a bit stinky these days so I have to wash it EVERY DAY! The asking them what they want for lunch, recess, crunch and sip, then making the lunch and getting out the door before 9:00am so I can start work at a reasonable time. All these things that make life busy and i have to say, I enjoy it when I don’t have to do them.
(Please note: I know working parents still have to do this for kids in the holidays, going to vacation care or to friends places, so I know I’m super lucky to have my own business and be able to work around the holidays. I hope working parents who need to keep working do get some respite during the holidays. Its OK to take a day off and still send them to vacation care if you’re exhausted. I like to call these days mental health days and they are absolutely essential to mum life).
So what’s on?
On the other hand I’m also planning activities for the holidays like the party planner I once was. Not because I have to be busy, but because I am determined not to have the kids playing on their devices all holidays.
Our holidays usually look something like this………..
On the first Monday we have a day of rest, the kids can play on screens and devices for as long as I think their little brains can take it. Then for the rest of the week I plan sports activities, play dates, walking trips (we love walking in the National Park down near Wattamolla, there are some gorgeous hikes and we love bird spotting, animal spotting and flower spotting) but only in the morning. I like to get home in the afternoon watch a movie, read and relax.
Sometimes I also take my boys on a mini break, just to get away from homelife and have a little adventure. These holidays I’m not sure we will make it away, but we will see, I love a bit of spontaneity too.
This way I think the kids get exercise, outdoor time AND enough relaxation to re-charge their batteries. After all, they have waaaaaay more energy to burn than us parents and still need to do that somehow in the holidays, but they also get to give their minds a rest and to be less regimented in routine.
One other non-negotiable for my kids in the holidays (while they are still young) is their bedtime. They may get to stay up later on the weekends and for special occasions, but I find keeping to their usual bedtime helps to get them back to the school routine more easily after the holidays and they are not needing to catch up on sleep when they go back to school.
I’d love to hear what other parents do during the holidays with or for their kids, to help them wind down and relax. I hope you all get some downtime, reading, relaxing, exercising in the fresh air. We are halfway through the year and there are many more adventures to come, so take the time for you these holidays and may the force be with you 🙂