It’s been two weeks since my last diary entry. Two weeks since school closed for the year and the dreaded H word began. Holidays.
Don’t get me wrong, I love holidays, I used to eagerly count the days wishing for its arrival like my kids wish for Santa to arrive, with lots of pressies in tow. Or chocolate or ice cream, or chocolate ice cream with sprinkles. (They nag… er I mean count down pretty much everything to do with presents or sugar, preferable both). Visions of rest, relaxation and reading, and sunny lazy days poolside dragged my tired, depleted mind through that last mental block of the year end frenzy.
But that was BC. A time Before Children.
Let’s take a moment and be honest here. Firstly the fine print.
I love my children dearly, they are my everything and I absolutely love spending time with them.
But, its hard work.
And at this time of year the “Working-Mom-Juggle” becomes a Circ du soleil headline show. With schools closed, random holiday clubs, and playdates are booked, I kiss goodbye the sturdy, safe structure of routine and try my best to embrace the chaos. No more school run, gym workout, work, collection of kids, home, dinner, bedtime. Now every morning I wake up thinking which kid is doing what or going where, usually at all different times, sometimes several times in a day. The logistics involved in having the kids occupied just so that I can get a couple of hours of work done would rival the likes of a covert army ops mission into enemy territory. In fact, I’m pretty sure I could run a JSE listed company with my eyes closed at this rate (Obviously this is no way any reference to any currently disgraced CEO’s, #Justsaying).
Just humour for me a minute here…
A simple example of a CEO CV (MOM CV notes added):
- Informing and advising Board members
(kids and husband – No you can’t have a sleepover it’s a weekday – Jay the plumber is coming on Thursday)
- Managing the company’s
Household resources – Switching from 2-ply to 1-ply in the kids’ bathroom – My en-suite still has the good stuff )
- Stakeholder management
(Managing the ever-changing needs of the Kids, Hubby, friends, extended family, Ngcebo!)
- Recommending an annual budget
(No PS4 dude, sorry it’s not in the annual budget, and tonight kids we are having spagbol again. Let’s say yay for leftovers)
- Implementing strategic plans
(If we organise a playdate for Aiden and then drop Ava at Mom’s then we can have 2 hours maybe? Always charge the iPads before a road trip)
– Kids, do as I say and not as I do.
- Organisational skills
– As above, party planning, playdates, socials
- Analytical thinking
– School holiday club will cost be R100 per day, however the Gym Kids club is free
- Strategic planning – Plan a short holiday break AFTER the free holiday club dates – see how clever I was there?
- Time management
– Doing 8 hours of work in 4 – ask me how 🙂
- The ability to work under pressure
– “Mom can we go to the shops and get Top Trump Cards now” x 100 – nagged in my ear whilst compiling emails, and organising playdates on Whatsapp, and holding the dog back from attacking the monkeys in the yard. It can be done people.
- Communication abilities
– I can ask the kids to turn the TV down in 3 different languages, at 6 different volumes – one so high only dogs can hear me, all while standing on my head. Try it. I read that P!nk says she sings better upside down too.
- Supervisory skills
– I have eyes at the back of my head, and ears as sharp as a bat. I know the sound of Lego being dumped on the floor or hot chocolate sneakily being make for 6 friends.
I am available with 15 year’s notice (Stll in current role), I have no annual leave and my salary expectations are extremely high.
I digressed a little there, so holidays….
Two weeks into the holidays and with a little under two weeks to go until Christmas, I am at the precipice where I want to and should have been…..all sorted, ready and prepared ahead of time for the festive season. Which means I should have sorted out the gifts, the Christmas day lunch menu, got the house in order etc etc all before this Friday, because as we all know too well, the world as we know it ends on the 16th December each year.
Alas, this has not gone to plan and next week is fast approaching where I will inevitably end up joining the rest of the masses who couldn’t get their act together and are now frantically rushing around the shops which, a week out from Christmas, have probably packed away the crackers and are stocking Valentine’s Day goodies.
I was hoping for a nice December festive season “wind down”, however it appears to be more and more prevalent each year that the “wind down” is more of a “wind up”. Urgent work calls, last minute issues, people that I have not heard from all year are suddenly coming out the woodwork with random requests. Really? Now? I am pretty sure they are just trying to clear their inbox, like the rest of us, and finding reasons to keep me chained to my laptop and phone until the world ends.
Please, I beg, everyone go on leave now. I am done, finished, kaput. I am suffering from Festive Frenzy Frazzle and am desperately dragging myself to the finish line, the big “H”.
Ahh…Holidays – That joyous time of year where I have to look after my own kids 24/7 (and by that I mean it feels like they are awake all 24 hours of the day) , clean my own house 24/7 (and by that I mean really clean, like clean the cleaning appliances) and cook 24/7, (and by that I mean feed the masses at least 3 times a day. I could possibly get away with twice a day – 6 times a day for Ngcebo)
And to think there I was this morning complaining about packing a lunch box. Little did I know.
But, for now, the thoughts of me on a sun lounger, book in one hand, glass of champagne in the other overlooking a crystal clear pool is the only thing that is going to get me to Friday morning.
The Holiday season, perfectly sorted.