As a stay at home mum, I often find myself answering questions about what I do all day. Mostly from people who think I spend all my days at Costa, catching up on box-sets or scrolling through Instagram. Alright, so the last one is partly true, but there are a ton of other things that need to get done and often not enough hours in the day.
It feels like the summer has only just arrived and already people are telling me how lucky I am to be home in the sun while they have to work. Now, I’m not saying that’s not true. The last summer I was at work I was heavily pregnant and sitting in an office with broken air-con and no-one willing to move desks to let the pregnant lady sit next to the one and only 25 year old fan. Believe me, I fully appreciate my summers now, but there are a few ways it doesn’t quite live up to what I thought it would be:
1. Expectation: It’s sunny, everyone else is working and you get the park to yourselves to soak up the sun.
Reality: Your toddler hates sun cream, hates sun hats and absolutely NEEDS to wear his wellies on the hottest day of the year. In the rush to get out before the sun goes in you forgot the picnic and drinks. Five minutes into the trip and feeling dehydrated, you realise maybe it’s easier just to stay at home?
2. Expectation: It’s easier to entertain the kids for free without being cooped up in the house all day.
Reality: Your kids don’t actually want to leave the house as that’s where the TV/WiFi is…
3. Expectation: The sun is shining and it’s the perfect time to crack this potty training thing in the garden.
Reality: A heatwave is definitely not the time to try and get a stubborn, wilful toddler to do something he doesn’t want to do. The heat has turned him feral and he’s just run faster than Usain Bolt into the house mid-poo. You spend the next half an hour scrubbing your carpets and wondering if it’s really so bad if he’s still in nappies when he goes to secondary school.
4. Expectation: Now’s your chance to finally get a tan!
Reality: You’re so concerned with making sure the kids drink enough water, have sun cream on and get some shade that you forget about yourself. Burn yourself to a crisp on day one and retreat inside for the rest of the summer.
5. Expectation: Your house will finally be clean while the kids play outside!
Reality: You realise you’ve finally become an adult after getting FAR too excited about the prospect of getting clothes washed, dried and put away on the same day. After a couple of days of frantic cleaning while everyone enjoys the sun, you realise it’s short lived and the house will be a mess 10 minutes after the kids come in anyway. You decide to give up on the housework and use ‘supervising the kids’ as an excuse to soak up the sun with a G&T in the garden. After all it’s your summer too right? And at least the washing basket is empty….
You can find more from Tightwad Mama on her blog tightwadmama.com