So it’s February vacation for the kids in Massachusetts. My son is thrilled and surprisingly I am too. However, I consider myself very lucky when it comes to my part-time job and scheduling. I work 20 hours a week, I have a flexible schedule and I have some vacation/sick time. Last year was a struggle, as I used almost all of my vacation days due to snow cancellations and a roof collapse at my son’s school (EEK!) before the month of February even ended. So this winter has been fantastic and since I haven’t used any vacation days, I decided to use one for this week, which knocks 5 hours off and gives me a little flexibility for the week.
My husband mainly works nights and conveniently works in the same city as me, so we can do the child transfer very easily and I am actually able to work a later day because I am picking him up closer to work. Not only that, but it means, I don’t have to have the daily morning struggles of getting my son dressed or making sure he brushes his teeth in the morning! If my husband has to go in early, or can’t get coverage, I have a wonderful friend that offers to help me from time to time, and I also have a wonderful child care provider that I can use if I am in a bind. So this truly is like a vacation week for me, but not necessarily the case for others.
I know the stay at home moms have to struggle with entertaining their kids for the week. They take them to all the main attractions such as movies, museums and indoor play spaces. Each one of these are jam packed and crawling with children and the moms have to suffer because it’s either that or have the children at home saying they are bored. Even if you do plan an activity, they will say they are bored as soon as you get home, or even at times, on the way home. The moms get out of their normal routine and don’t get the things done that they normally would and usually end up spending a lot of money these weeks. Some of the lucky ones set up play dates or live in a neighborhood that they can send the kids outside to play, but ultimately, I believe that they look forward to getting back to the day to day routine.
What about the full-time moms? Well there are a lot of options these days, which is actually quite nice because they didn’t have as many options when I was a kid. I know that the Y offers week long vacation camps, there are also after school programs that offer their own vacation camp, some of the lucky one’s have parents, or in-laws nearby to help out and then there is always daycare or a nanny, but either way, you get thrown out of your day to day routine and you have to pay for most of the extra coverage, whichever you may choose.
So vacation week is nearly over, and although I am a little sad, I know that there will be another one in April. How was your vacation week? Do you consider the time the kids are in school your own vacation? What did you do to keep your kids occupied, and if you work, where did your children spend their vacation week?