We all love having our children home for the long school holidays to spend time with them. They deserve a long break after incredibly hard at their school work. However, much as I enjoy having them home, things can quickly get crazy for all of us if we don’t have a clear set of rules that we can all abide by to help us survive being around each other for that extended amount of time.
These are some rules that help us maintain the peace in our home over the long school holidays:
Family rules for surviving the school holidays
1. Be Kind
We need to watch our words and actions towards each other. Spending time together is great fun but there are bound to be squabbles between the children and even the parents. We must be mindful of being kind and respectful towards each other.
2. Pick up
Parents can go a bit crazy when there is more than the usual chaos of toys and legos lying around. Or maybe that’s just us! To prevent us scolding the kids and feeling resentful at the mess we’ve made a rule that they pack away all their toys and stationery before bedtime.
The same rule also applies to play dates. We don’t mind when chaos ensues during their playtime but all the friends need to help with pack up before they leave.
2. The kitchen is not open 24/7
Since I started writing this post I’ve made four toasted cheese sandwiches, a pot of vegetable soup, crackers and a tuna salad and countless mugs of tea. It’s enough to tire any mom!
Groceries are super expensive and it seems that most of my time over the school holidays are spent in the kitchen preparing meals and snacks. I’m trying as much as possible to keep the children sticking to meal times. In between meals they can eat fruit, have a glass of water or a yogurt. They will not starve!
2. We are not made of cash
In the past I planned many outings to fill up the holidays. Going back to work and school after the holidays was the first time I got to relax. This school holidays we’re trying something different. We are enjoying a stay-cation with activities and outings that cost money only on select days.
I hate using money as a reason for us not doing everything that the kids what to do but the reality is that it is too expensive for us to take them everywhere we’d like to. I make sure that I’m informed of local events happening around the city like at our local library, expos, shows, etc that are enjoyable for the kids but not that expensive and suggest these as alternatives.
5. Don’t tell me you’re bored
School days are very scheduled. It’s good for them to unwind and just relax over the school holidays and there is nothing wrong with that. Some days my son plays alone for hours on the floor with all his toys or listening to music. He finds it very relaxing, as it should be!
There really is no good reason for our children to be bored. They have plenty of toys to play with, tons of lego and puzzles, stationery to draw with, movies to watch, the freedom to take a walk for some fresh air and if all else fails we will happily give them a chore to fill the time. They are very aware of this so our children never ever complain of boredom!
By the end of the school holidays we would like them to go back to school feeling refreshed but we’d also like to still have warm and fuzzy feelings towards them. These rules will ensure that we all make it through the school holidays! What are some of your guidelines for surviving the holidays with the kids?