I remember when the things I took home from a summer holiday included a tan, a few souvenirs, a taste for sangria, a satisfying stack of well-read novels, and a Europop earworm.  


Those were the days, and boy are they loooooong gone. Post parenthood you get to bring home over-tired children and a shit load of holiday washing. In fact you’ll be tied (or sellotaped) to the bloody washing machine for perhaps the rest of your natural life.

So after the epic pack-a-thon, here’s the full list of our collective take-homes from a week in the sun.

Big Small Person

  • An unprecedented tolerance for water on the face
  • Complete (over)confidence in jumping into the pool
  • A vehement conviction that dipping one’s face into the surface of the pool constitutes ‘swimming under water’
  • Rampant desire for a swimming pool in the garden at home
  • Absolute certainty that 21.30 is the ‘new’ bedtime
  • Doubt in the omnipotence of the sacred Glo Clock (Noooooooo!!!!!!!!!!)
  • Nut-brown knees
  • An aversion to socks, or footwear that doesn’t make a flip flop sound when you walk
  • A new hat
  • A fan, purse, mini dream-catcher and various other tat for amusement and parental peace purposes
  • A strong predilection for the consumption of chicken nuggets, chips and ice cream at every single fucking meal.

Overall thoughts:

Holidays are brilliant!!!!!


Small Small Person

  • A deep set and unshakeable belief that anyone other than Mummy is UP TO NO GOOD and BODES ILL FOR BABIES
  • A runny tummy
  • Sleep regression
  • An aversion to all types of food, including former favourites
  • Newfound hatred of inserting one’s body in bodies of water OF ANY TYPE
  • New flirtation skills, reserved only for foreign waiters
  • A mild concussion having thrown itself off the bed onto the ceramic floor in a temper tantrum
  • An unhealthy obsession with the Big Small Person’s flip flops.

Overall thoughts:

No. Produce Mummy now or suffer the consequences.



  • A nice, even tan after hours in the pool with the Big Small Person
  • Top ‘fun parent’ status
  • A deteriorated relationship with the Small Small Person, who is broken
  • Two books read cover to cover
  • Fitness levels kept up with daily jogs or swims.

Overall thoughts:

Meh. Not enough booze or sex.



  • A limpet baby
  • A feral pre-schooler
  • Chronic sleep deprivation
  • Alabaster/cornbeef skin, having spent holiday inside or in the shade
  • A deteriorated relationship with the Big Small Person, having barely seen it for a week
  • Bottom ‘boring pool-side parent’ status
  • Zero books read
  • An extra 15lbs
  • Something of a grudge against Dadonthenetheredge
  • Backache, from constantly holding limpet baby
  • Nipple ache, as primary point of limpet attachment
  • Expertise as wiggling the same damn three toys in new and exciting ways in desperate attempt to distract limpet baby from limpetism
  • A disinclination for human contact having been ‘touched out’ by limpet baby
  • Homicidal hatred of the four baby books that came on holiday (yes, including Fox’s Socks)
  • Ongoing heart palpitations, having watched suddenly un-sticky un-limpity baby fall straight off the bed
  • Intimate knowledge of the symptoms of concussion and cerebral contusions following extensive and obsessive internet research
  • Astronomic data roaming charges (see above)
  • Sparkly new neurosis around ‘secondary drowning’ (look it up and join me!)
  • A fervent appreciation of routine
  • Overwhelming gratitude for alternative sources of childcare
  • A mountain of fucking holiday washing
  • A gazillion and three midge bites (approx)
  • A possible drink problem
  • A strong desire never to leave the Nether Edge ever, ever again.

Overall thoughts:

Never again. Pass the wine.


I could go on, but I’ve got far too much washing to do – and then leave languishing in unsorted piles for the rest of eternity.

Toodle pip.