Are you having a lovely half term? Mine is going splendidly, thank you. Isn’t it great? All these free hours and days, and all these children with simply nothing to do. La la la.
I am drowning, not waving. Such a cruel thing to do a mother: February half term. Even the words sound mean. I have barely recovered from the horrors of Christmas; the bad clothes I was given are still in the gift wrap in the back of the car, no chance of a refund now. January turned out to be more of a drinkathon than a dry-athlon, so I have the complexion of a lizard. I’ve been stoically frugal – no self-gifting for weeks – and am now so sick of my winter wardrobe, I am going to punch myself in the lizard-face the next time I see myself in that jumper. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I am not now, and probably never will be, the type of woman who goes skiing – I don’t even know where half of those skiing places are, with their is-it-Switzerland-is-it-France names, full of Xs and Zs. And I have battled through the disappointment of Valentine’s Day (post received: one leaflet from Relate). I think I’ve endured quite enough recently, thank you very much. And now you want me to look after the kids all week, in the cold, AND MAKE PANCAKES?
So anyway, here we all are, having a lovely time. And just to confirm – since so many people do seem to ask, as if going skiing is a thing that comes pre-printed on the calendar like Christmas or Labor Day (US) – we are not going skiing. We’re not doing anything much to be honest, mainly because I am generally not paying attention to anything, and so this half term holiday, like all the other half term holidays, has come as a bit of a surprise to me.
I was just getting into the swing of the 6.30am starts, the Cubs on Monday, ballet on Tuesday stuff. And now out of nowhere I have to stop and have fun and make pancakes. So I haven’t arranged any childcare, and am trying to work at the kitchen table, while the children hone their social skills on devices of varying sizes and shout their food orders, with a large helping of entitlement on the side, from rooms that I am not in.
Still, we don’t need no fancy skiing holidays to have fun do we, kids? We can do cool stuff at home, like baking. Yay, woo-hoo, baking. Betty got some cookie cutters in her stocking for Christmas (gender stereotyping out of control) and I have been promising ever since, to make biscuits with her. So, two months later, we finally made farmyard biscuits, the ones in the awful children’s cookbook, where every recipe involves cheese and has 25 steps. It took at least three hours longer than was necessary, but I think you’ll agree it was worth the effort:
Who wants to go skiing? I ask you.
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