Written by Alexia Rowley
I write this as I sit on the plane ,back from our first family holiday since my second child was born.
Several things have struck me about holidays with little ones. Things I knew, but never really knew before, if that makes sense.
- Airports are not the same with children… Putting aside my 2-year-old falling over at Gatwick and having a lump the side of a golf ball appearing on her forehead (which lasted for the whole holiday). Or the suitcase that fell on her in the check-in gate at Larnaca airport…. There is no more meandering around the shops, having a quick alcoholic beverage, talking about the excitement of the holiday and how brown we might get. There is soft play!!! At the airport!
- Holidays are not relaxing, sleep filled, lazy affairs. Neither are they opportunities to sight see and visit all those undiscovered places.
They are however filled with ice cream, promises of ice cream and honouring lunchtime naps to avoid meltdowns.
- There are no night time meals out followed by a few drinks, safe in the knowledge that tomorrow we can lie in as long as we wish. There are early evening meals and back in the apartment in time for the children’s bedtime as tomorrow will be a very, very early start.
The things I took for granted about holiday before children…
- Planes. My daughter was sooo excited about the idea of going on an aeroplane. It was truly lovely to see. The build-up, the airport day, the actual stepping into the plane. “We’re flying” she kept saying. I forgot just how amazing that is!
- Ice cream. I have touched on this, but who knew that everyday little people could be just so thrilled at the prospect of the days Ice cream. I love ice cream as much as the next person but her excitement was infectious. We will miss daily ice cream.
- Being part of first times. This is by far the best thing about holidays with little ones and something pre children I never appreciated. Watching my baby son at the beach for the first time. Watching his gorgeous face when he dipped his toe in the clear sea. Watching my daughter’s delight at the game she played endlessly of picking up wet sand and putting it in the sea, never tiring of it. Watching them try new foods (admittedly after trying flavours my daughter just wanted to eat chips, but at least she tried). Sharing these are memories that we will always have.
Holidays are certainly very different with little ones in more ways than I was expecting.