family · Humour · Parenting · Poem · Rhyme

Doing Holidays With The Small Humans…

Image shows a silhouette of a family on their holidays, on a pier at sunset.

Remember your holidays just as a two?
The blissful idea of nothing to do?

The sleepy siestas and cocktails at noon,
As you bathed in the sun to a tropical tune?

The crisp hotel sheets and delicious menus,
Relaxed pace of life and spectacular views?

All of those things that once floated your boat…

… Forget it.
It’s over.

You’re now a Redcoat.

5.30 am and your first day begins,
As you’re greeted by offspring with chaotic grins.

With complete disrespect for both neighbours and hour,
They’re set for adventure and charged to full power.

With no option to snooze and invoke Paw Patrol,
You reluctantly take on parental control.

The hoteliers now dictate when they can eat,
So they whine “Is it breakfast time yet?” on repeat.

You tug on your blazer and paint on your face.
You are going for gold in the parenting race,

It is 5.45. You’re all up and you’re dressed.
So you reach for the toy bag and hope for the best.

The toy bag you let the kids back by themselves,
Into which they swept all of the toot from their shelves.

Half a toy train and a mountain of tat?
Good luck passing 22 seconds with that!

Don’t panic, you’ve got this, you’re Redcoat-prepared!
You’ve a rucksack of stickers and pens to be shared…

… And so it continues.
All throughout the day.
As the small folk dictate your events in their way.

From one “fun activity” on to the next,
You shall bounce.
Filled with caffeine and desperate to rest.

From soft-play to swimming to playgrounds and swings.
Your sugar-fuelled charges demand “All the things!!

You slide through the day with no hope of a break,
Whilst ever your tiny employer’s awake.

Like a weary old donkey you drag that back-pack,
Always primed to wipe hands or dispense a light snack.

Your senses are heightened on scarlet alert,
To prevent the small clumsies from getting too hurt.

As they launch themselves head first upon hard tiled floors,
Chance their luck by the pool, trap their fingers in doors…

You’re never off duty.
No drinks and no swears.
Your ‘vacay’ agenda revolves around theirs.

But unlike the Redcoats, we do it for free!
We pay for the privilege in fact, happily!?

And we have to admit that it isn’t all bad.
In fact some of these hols are the best that we’ve had!

The countdown of sleeps and their excited smile,
Are all that’s required to make trips worth our while.

We can we wait til we’re home to crack open the wine.
Once we’ve got them to bed at their usual time.

We all toast to the memories and how the time’s flown.

And start planning the next one before they’re full grown.


This post originally featured on the fabulous Meet Other Mums blog page, for whom I am proud to be a regular blogger.

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100 thoughts on “Doing Holidays With The Small Humans…

  1. Fab! So very true! This is basically our first holiday we took last year with a 1yr old and a 2yr old and I have to say it was a different kind of hell. I waved goodbye to my beach/relaxing/chilled out holidays I used to enjoy before children and had a swift sharp shock of what it is like with 2 young toddlers. We swore we would never do it again until they were both out of nappies and old enough to be bribed properly. It’s a bit like child birth after a while the bad memories fade away and you think… We could do that again…. so next year will be our first holiday away since then, it will be our honeymoon and first time on a plane but the boys will be 4 and 3 so hopefully it will be a bit easier…. Nicky xx #DreamTeam

    1. I definitely think it has to be easier with a three and four year old. We’re planning our first overseas holiday next year when ours are 3 and 5 so I’m on the same lines as you. Here’s hoping eh? Honeymoon sounds amazing though! Where are you heading to? Xx

  2. Sounds sooooooo knackering! Going to need a holiday to recover from holiday but totally agree! We had a beach trip the other day and all my mummy wanted to do was sit down. In 6 hours she managed 15mins!!!! *huff* Oh well, we’ll be sad when the kids aren’t around and are stroppy teenagers not wanting our attention x #DreamTeam

  3. So much love for this! We are yet to experience what I would call a ‘proper’ holiday abroad with The Little but I can imagine it to be not quite the same as pre-Baby Lighty!! Just popping back from #DreamTeam xxx

    1. To be fair we haven’t tried a holiday abroad yet Mrs L but I’ve gathered this little bit of experience from our latest hols in the UK. I think we might try it next year. It’ll be fun right? ?? Thank you lovely xx

  4. Ha yep this is so true. Holidays are definitely different with kids. Although as our little girl gets older it’s nice seeing her get excited about going on a plane, even when it is 3am and all I want to do is go back to sleep!! #dreamteam

  5. Yup, that sounds about right! The days of having a leisurely holiday with your partner on the beach are long gone – but there’s something wonderful about all the chaos in a way. Still , a bit of a holiday lie-in would be greatly appreciated. #DreamTeam

  6. I just love this. The end is true as well, they’re some of the best we’ve had but ‘never being off duty’ is the drawback. Unless you book one with childcare or as some may say grandparents #DreamTeam

  7. Aaaw lovely ending. I think, on paper, none-parents must wonder why on earth we bother going on “holiday” when it’s so unrestful, but it’s the happy smiles and giddy kids that really makes it! #dreamteam

  8. #dreamteam we’re never happy lol, we moan we want kids, we miss the holidays we used to have…they grow up and we miss the family holidays lol. guess we need to live in the moment. loved the line about being a red coat – so true!

  9. Ah memories of when holidays were about us! They are the boss wherever you go! However I’m looking forward to these type of holidays where the kids are enjoying it, going nuts and enthusiastic. When they’re happy, I’m happy. Although it will be nice to go on a grown up holiday again! Cocktails by the pool are a very appealing prospect x #dreamteam

    1. I have a very distant memory of a swim up bar saved in my imagination. At least we know the cocktails will still be there when the little ones are all grown up, and we’ll be sobbing into them wishing that we could be chasing them in circles around the toddler pool again won’t we hehe x

  10. I managed to get away in January to Port Douglas with a few girlfriends and although completely blissful, all I could think was I wish the kids were here they would love this pool! What has happened to ME!!!!!

    1. Haha I know what you mean. We holiday in Center Parcs a lot and always dream of all the lovely spa days and evenings out we’d have as just grown ups. Of course in reality we would just end up spending all our time pointing at the playgrounds and slides and saying “oh but the kids would love that!” ? x

  11. I never experienced any of this as a kid. We got taken camping and canoeing. We ran feral as a pack and only came in for food – to whoever’s mummy was around. Wonder if I will be able to give it a go with the little one? Not sure it’s my cup of tea. #dreamteam

  12. aww this is so so gorgeous. I laughed at the opening line and then some more at the Redcoats but by the end it was all the warm squishy gorgeousness of memories! Love! #DreamTeam

  13. Perfect description of holidays with little ones! I love the part about letting them pack a bag by themselves. We do that and then wonder why we didn’t secretly unpack and repack it! x

    1. I always intend to monitor and then do a bit of stealth repacking myself but then in the chaos of packing I kind of forget that bit and kick myself when they reveal their hoard of pinecones and empty washing up liquid bottles that have been lovingly packed. ?? x

  14. That to me is a perfect description of my holiday to Butlins with my three year old. To be honest, it describes pretty much any holiday with children. The looks of pure joy on their faces makes it completely worth it though #dreamteam

  15. I so miss those lazy mornings, a chilled coffee at breakfast, in a nice cafe on a nice square somewhere hot, a boozy lunch and late nights. Oh, how life has changed! But all the same it’s kinda fun having the little ones in tow, and now they are getting older, the lie-ins are starting to come back! #dreamteam

  16. It’s exactly this! I always feel like I need a holiday, after a holiday. But seeing all the smiles and excitement is everything isn’t it. Wouldn’t have it any other way. Loving the redcoats references haha! #dreamteam xx

  17. The last time my eldest trapped her finger in the door she needed an operation! I really don’t want to see any more accidents here. #DreamTeam

  18. This would be hilarious if it wasn’t so true! I’m away with the kids right now and I feel exhausted, only three days in!! I’d love to say we are having a relaxing time but it’s such hard work, the kids might be having the best holiday ever but I’m ready for a break!!

  19. Hehe, always need a holiday after a holiday with kids!
    We’re going on a cruise with the kids after being on the same cruise without kids! It’s going to be SO different!! Ha!

  20. im dreading going on a proper holiday with Ben. I thought his a few days in wales was bad enough but more than a week would just be insane… id need a holiday to recover from a holiday! #dreamteam

  21. I felt exhausted just reading this! Tell me it’s easier with one under one? I think I could get by with a few swears? And just make sure I don’t teach her to walk before we go! Haha you’re making me thankful I accidentally booked a 4 day break alone with my sister next month… #dreamteam

  22. I need another holiday after the stress of a holiday. I went away 4 nights a few months back without kids and it was so relaxing, The memory is now my happy place to escape to when life gets too stressful #dreamteam

  23. Love ‘Redcoat’ -so apt! Your poem really rmeinded me of the earlier years (have tweens now) so life is a little easier but certainly not at the point where they do theor own thing! We’ll look back on this with rose tinted glasses when we cab’t get ours to lift their heads from their phones!!! Great poem – as always xxxxxx

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