It would be great to do a daily blog of the holidays to record a summer of fun, exciting activities and endless sunny days. It would be great but I think it would also take me away from those activities themselves: and, of course, it is not all fun and sunny days either.
But day one, of forty six (not that I have counted), is worthy of comment. For reasons I am not going to go into here it was a no TV/ computer time day for the boys, who had not got as much sleep as they needed the night before (yes the two things are related) and we quickly realised that we were faced with two grumpy boys and a whole (mainly rainy) day to fill without the electronic child care to fall back on.
At this point the liberal middle class voice inside me is screaming out “tell them that actually the boys do not watch all that much”, so there you are. But sometimes it is easier to just let them sit in front of the TV, although we never suggest it, we never usually have to.
Anyway, I digress, despite early fears it turned into a really good day as we got to play lots of games, built things, did experiments, did finger and feet painting, the boys played nicely, and we even timed a visit to the park just right between a heavy rain shower and a massive thunder storm (which we watched excitedly from an upstairs window).
I am not going to pretend that it was all plain sailing, there were the usual niggles and petty annoyances, but when I sat down at the end of it it felt like it had been a rich experience. And, as I am writing this, as so often happen in such cases, the blindingly obvious hits me: the more I genuinely engage the more and better the boys respond.
And perhaps, on a different level, as I was saying in my last post, it is about letting go. In this case letting go of the smaller things: allowing the boys to get messy (we can always clean up), allowing them to dictate the pace and shape of the day (it is invariably fun), playing those games you really did not want to play (our inner child is in there somewhere), and being a bit less uptight about what they can and cannot do (others are not judge us like we think they are, and so what if they were?).
I am sure that not all of the next forty five days are going to be like this, and I am sure that I am not going to be as ‘up for it’ everyday, but it felt like a good start.