If you follow me on Instagram then you may have seen my stories about our recent ‘break’ away. Little did I know exactly what that ‘break’ meant!
Next week my Nan turns 80! (Sorry if that was supposed to be a secret Nan. Just kidding she obviously isn’t on the internet, she still picks up the remote half of the time she wants to call someone). With such a big milestone birthday on the cards we planned a big family get away. Everyone came together, all her kids, grandkids and even great grandkids! Her brother and his wife came as a surprise too and we had so many other nice little surprises (including a birthday message from Ant and Dec which I think could have been her favourite).
Lots of the family went up and stayed in the hotel both the Friday and Saturday night but Clayton had to work until 11:30 both nights so I decided that we would only go for the main night, Saturday. We happened to be staying in a hotel a few minutes from Clayton’s job so we all travelled up Saturday morning – he went to work and the boys and I met everyone at the hotel.
And after about 30 minutes it all started to go wrong. Obviously, Aidan has his own challenges coupled with trying to keep the two of them confined to the lobby and bar while we waited for our room to be ready was a struggle. A trip to the toy shop across the road meant I was €50 worse off but I would be able to get them into the room and ready for the meal single-handedly – right? Wrong! It meant fighting over toys that on any other day would not interest them, tantrums when the television didn’t have Peppa and just general annoyance at being stuck in a hotel room. (All very valid arguments when you’re 1 and 3)
Eventually, after many many tears, I got them dressed. My Mam offered to take them to her room while I got ready for dinner. Shit! I still had a meal to get through. One with about 30 members of my family (who are all obviously very unjudgemental but still you know the pressure you feel when there is anybody else around and your kids are feral!). At that point I would have just walked out the door and home.. except I had no way to get home. It was an hours drive away and guess what I don’t drive!
I somehow managed to get myself ready and then I produced the holy grail of child distractions – their tablets! (Electronic not medicinal – I don’t know why I always feel the need to clarify that?) Aidan happily sat in his buggy at this point because he was already pretty exhausted from his 6 am wake-up and day-long tantrum. And Finn was delighted to be the centre of attention. Based on how the day had been going and as far as dinner with children goes it actually went ok overall. They didn’t eat the dinner instead they ate the stash of snacks I brought with me – but they were content and quiet. SUCCESS!
And my good streak didn’t stop there. Oh no! I managed to get the two of them asleep in their strollers after two short walks in the corridors. “Hey, this wasn’t so bad after all”
They’re both wide awake. Its 1 am, Aidan is screeching on the top of his lungs to “go in the car”. Finn’s eyeballs are practically on his knees but he won’t give in to just close them. We spent 3 hours trying to get them back to sleep to no avail so at 4 am we packed up the car and headed home. Thankfully they fell asleep in the car and by some sort of miracle, or the universe cutting me some slack, we transferred them to bed still asleep! I have honestly never been so happy to see my bed in my whole life.
That night Clayton and I vowed to wait at least 6 years before even considering spending a night in a hotel again!