The week including Passover and Easter was spring break for many of us here in the Northeast. Our family didn’t have any extravagant plans but, I always relish a simple break from the routine…. especially the respite from making lunches! The days flew by quickly — too quickly — and suddenly it was back to school, back to business, back to reality. Just a few days in, I was TIRED. Ten days later, I don’t how I’m going to make it to Memorial Day, our next day off which feels eons away. That week the kids were off from school was simple, easy, more relaxed and oddly enough, even more productive in some ways — I was able to sort through hand-me-downs and pay bills in the pre-dawn hours while the little ones snoozed. I realize that doesn’t quite sound like a vacation but there was a sense of self-satisfaction that came with making a dent in my monumental to-do list; there was mental clarity in knowing things were organized and tidy; there was a sense of relief when the clock struck 7:00 and I didn’t have grab grumbly kids out of their warm cozy beds.
Here are my Top 5 signs you’re not on vacation anymore — any you’d add?
- I never thought I’d be glad for a school break because it meant I’d have time to put the laundry away but, it’s true. Then, our clean clothes were in drawers; now they are in baskets. And there they will likely stay until they get worn, washed and put back in the basket. If they get washed at all. There’s a good chance our clothes won’t see the inside of a drawer until the next school break. Good thing for all those hand-me-downs!
- Dinner is planned before breakfast is consumed. During the vacation week, we just rolled with it. One night we had pizza and “make your own sundae” night. Another, we made a last minute decision to take the crew out for Mexican. Now, it’s back to defrosting meat before the coffee pot even perks up for the day. It’s hard enough to face my own thighs some mornings but chicken thighs before sunrise can be a tough way to start the day!
- Bedtime is at 8:00. Sharp! While the kids were off from school, we hung out well past their usual bedtimes. There was extra “kid TV”, movie night and a strong likelihood to honor the requests for “one more book!” Now, it’s a 50 yard dash to the bunk beds as soon as the sun starts to drop in the warm spring sky. “Brush your teeth! Go to the bathroom! Go to bed! NOW! Good night!!” And the door is shut, the lights are out, and the work begins — house work, office work, all the things that we let slide while they were on vacation. I have to say, I’m missing the “kid TV” and “one more book!”
- Activities and Sports and Playdates oh my! It feels like someone shot the starting gun at about 6AM on April 1st, which was their first day back in school. It was also the day that lacrosse, baseball, soccer and everything other spring activity you can imagine started in full swing, leaving me to wonder if perhaps I am the April Fool? What are we doing?! Racing here, racing there, grab your helmet, where are your cleats, get your water bottle, and on and on. Truth be told, they seem to thrive on it but I am already ready for a vacation!
- Rise and Shine has reverted to Rise and Whine. Need I say more?
We spent the greater part of that week off close to home (and 48 hours in Philly, which I will share highlights of at a later date!) and still the transition back to our regular routine was a tough one. I imagine it would have been even tougher had we actually really taken a vacation and returned with piles of laundry — see? With five kids, it’s really all about the laundry! Speaking of which, I need to go do some!