My green and thrifty projects this week are mostly things I meant to do, but didn't quite - make the last of the basil into pesto. Pick the last apples and rhubarb to stew. Make sourdough, sew on buttons, freeze some warrigal greens before the weather does it for me. What actually happened was school holidays.
Ah, school holidays. Over the Easter break we have done.. nothing. A whole lot of lovely, lovely, thrifty nothing. This is how our days unfold. I get up at dawn and go to the gym. When I get home I hop back into bed (in my gym clothes. Yes, I am a slattern), and read my book. When I get up the children may be playing cards. When I have finished my shower I may find children on my bed playing their flutes (why on MY bed girls? Go away). They may be cooking brownies, inviting friends over, cooking cupcakes, watching movies, painting eggs, painting over last year's canvasses (there goes their eminently collectable juvenilia..), learning canasta, playing spoons, watching endless ABC3, getting to Level 132 of the fruit game. Posy learns how to lay and light a fire. She does this every day, except she prefers not to go out in the rain and get muddy.. 'Look, the rain is letting up Mummy. You and The Girl should have enough time to go and get wood now before it rains again..'
The entire dining table disappears under painting detritus. Posy and her friend are painting an entire farm. They paint the backdrop, then paint all the individual elements and animals on separate pieces of paper, then cut them out to stick on the back drop.. then lose interest. Rosy is painting sunsets. The Girl is painting still lifes for her Year 12 art study.
There are sleep overs. The whole downstairs family room is turned into a giant fort with all the sheets, mattresses, cushions and blankets in the house. A teddy club is formed. Sleeping bags disappear into the fort where the 'sleep over' (ha) commences. There is hilarious dancing to loud music. There is home made pizza for dinner, and home made waffles for breakfast with whipped cream and this divine chocolate sauce. There are marshmallows toasted on the fire. Small girls disappear into the outside cubby between rain showers to spy on the boys next door (the ones they despise and loathe). The girls pull out the stash of Grandma Hazel's fabulous costume jewelry, and load themselves down with pearls and marvellous 70s clip-on ear rings. Then they get out all their beads and make their own jewelry. I happen to know what several mothers are getting for Mother's Day this year.
The absolute favourite and best thing to do in school holidays though, is to wear pyjamas all day and use an old foam mattress to slide down the stairs.
Let me warn you though - cheap and thrifty fun in the school holidays can be made to sound idyllic in a blog post, but mainly creates a whole house of mess. There is also a fair amount of yelling (both parents and children), some crying (ditto), door slamming, food embedded in soft furnishings, and similar prices to pay for cheerful mayhem. It is not for the faint hearted. Tell me about your black-belt parenting school holiday experiences..
Tired, but determinedly cheerful mother of four. One grown up son (The Boy), one grown up daughter (The Girl), two girls at home, Rosy (17) and Posy (13). Trying to buy a little less, make a little more, live a little lighter, not mess up the children too much.. and now extra frugal adventures with Partner Paul..