I can hear 21 year old Viki and Kris crying somewhere in the corner of my mind when they find out life changed dramatically. No more kid-free, sunbathing, cocktail drinking holidays for a while.
We have just returned from our happy holiday to the Lake District, where it rained, and it was chilly, most of the week. We had the car packed up to high heaven it was actually surprising Adam even fitted in as well and off we drove to England. It was a weird concept for me to go ‘on holiday’ this year since I’m not at work so it doesn’t feel like a holiday for me. And the fact that I was just basically moving my every day life with Adam to an unknown location to deal with him there instead of at home. I had to remind myself though that it was time for us to be a family of 3, just us, to bond and all that jazz.
The journey was, thankfully, pain-free. I had been a bit anxious about keeping Adam in his car seat for 3 and a half hours. Where were we going to stop and when? When would I make up his next bottle? And so on….but I needn’t have worried because he slept most of the way and got a wee half an hour stretch at Gretna and then we were there 50 minutes later. Pain-free.
The self catering cottage we were staying at was gorgeous and we were very pleased with our selection. Travel cot, baby bath and high chair had been provided which was great and very much appreciated. And it was spotless. The less I say about the state in which we left it in the better to be honest. I don’t think we masked the baby sick patches all over the carpet from Adam’s new crawling attempts and bouncing up and down. Sorry Cottage Owner, we are so very sorry.
I have to admit to feeling a little bereaved of my Perfect Prep machine from the get-go. For any one who formula feeds….just get one….you know you want to! My bag was full every day of the flask of boiling water and formula pots and bottles. Bibs for the the total drool-fest that is Adam and muslins to stop the sick from getting absolutely everywhere. So much STUFF! Not to mention my snazzy yellow rain mac and other various rain protection equipment which was very much needed for the wettest week in July Britain’s had for 70 years (or something like that).
I had a sudden appreciation for my own parents whilst we were away because I realised how much work and brain power is required to try to find things to do when you can’t just go down to the pool all day and run back and forward to the all inclusive bar. So respect to Mum and Dad for all those holidays! Those day trips did not just happen by accident it seems…you actually have to decide where to go and figure out how to get there. With minimal phone reception and 3G and no wifi. And even more respect to Mum and Dad because they did it without mobile phones and they had actual maps…WTF?! We figured it out though, and we had a private pool in the grounds of where we were staying so we had an hour each day in that as well which was a lovely added bonus. So Adam got to keep up his Turtle Tots lessons run by the School of Mum and Dad before we go back next week to his classes. Its actually upsetting to me now that Adam won’t even remember any of it, but I think we gave him a load of experiences to boost the brain cells!
I was also anxious about Adam not settling in a new environment but I really shouldn’t have. He was as good as gold. Went to bed at the same time and slept all night as usual. No hassle. I feel very lucky! We kept his routine the same and ate in our cottage every night before doing his normal bath and bedtime. And it worked.
I thought I was going to be depressed when the reality sunk in that I wasn’t going to get my sunshine and tanning fix but actually I think I’m ok with it now. It took me back to all of our caravan holidays when I was young. We didn’t go abroad until I was 12 so I am no stranger to a caravan. But those are all the holidays I have vivid memories of. Mum, Dad, my brother and me still laugh at the stupid and funny things that happened to us on those holidays. And I still remember all the things we seen and done. And then it really made me realise that there’s so much more to a holiday than the sunshine and a sun lounger. We made some family memories. I’m so excited by that because I’m almost 30 and my brother is 25 and if we can still laugh at him running down a sand dune and face planting in Cornwall then who knows what Adam will pick up over the years. So the generally conclusion is that we’ll do it all again next year, even though I don’t feel in any way relaxed like I usually do after a holiday, I think it’s fair to say if we had went abroad I would be significantly more stressed than I was. At least we stuck to the status quo and that seemed about right.
So if you’re considering it then I just say go for it! Pack the car of everything you own and get on the road. Totally worth it for the precious family moments.