1. Close the door behind them, grab a coffee and listen to the wonderful sound of… NOTHINGNESS! No t/v, no computer, no video games, no screaming, no tantrums, no arguing, no whining, no constant requests for food, no mates knocking on the door every five minutes…
2. Safe in the knowledge that the floor will not get littered for at least a few hours, put all the toys away and rediscover your carpet. NB. This is not always a good thing…
3. Phone someone. Anyone. It doesn’t matter whom – just revel in the fact that the phone is free and that you can talk on it without getting interrupted.
4. Do your supermarket shop, treat yourself to a bar of chocolate and eat it all to yourself, without hiding it in your bag or down your t-shirt. Return home, beaming, and pat yourself, Asda style, counting how much money you’ve saved from not having the kids with you asking for stuff.
5. Sit on the sofa. This is a novelty as it has been filled with all the kids in the street – and their cousins – all summer.
6. While on the sofa, pick up the small oblong thing with buttons on and point it at the telly. This is called a ‘remote control’, and is what the kids have been using to hide ‘Loose Women’ and the News during the holidays. You could also use this opportunity to retune the Digi box, locking CBBC/CBeebies/CITV…
7. Check your offspring’s Myspace/Bebo account (you do know their password, right?). Remove all offensive material, and replace their ‘cool pic’ with a photo of them as a baby. Leave them a message stating that if they ever allow language like that on there again, the photos will get increasingly embarrassing. Replace the weird rapper dude video with one of Bucks Fizz and sign your message ‘Kool Momma’.
8. Look in all your hiding places in the kitchen for lost chocolate bars. Check the use by dates before eating them anyway.
9. Open the fridge. Surprise yourself that all the food you bought that morning is still there.
10. Feel no guilt whatsoever that you haven’t missed them when they all come trouping back in, leaving their school bags/shoes/jumpers wherever they happen to land.
And if you are one of those weird mothers who do actually miss their kids when they’re at school, take two bags of crisps, place them on the lounge carpet and jump on them. Empty a jigsaw puzzle and a box of lego on top, throw on a few pairs of pyjamas, some socks and several odd shoes and mix with a cup of soil from the garden. Open five DVD’s, mix them up and leave them strewn on the sofa, together with as many video controllers as you can find.
There. That should make it feel more like a home again.
“Rachel Clark is An English Mum from a small town in the South of England. She enjoys writing about anything that pops into her head, and is happy if she makes other people smile. She doesn’t know why she is writing about herself in the third person, but feels very honoured to be contributing to the British Parent Bloggers site.
More of her quirky writing and poems can be found at www.anenglishmum.com“