Wednesday, December 31, 2008

All I want is a couple days off

Today’s pack-up day. We normally leave at 8 in the morning and drive straight through, but we’re heading out a little late today so I can get the kids all situated for their week without us.

(I’ll pause a moment and let that sink in.)

If you could see me right now you’d see me grinning ear to ear whilst doing a happy dance.

This is the second year in a row we’ve given the kids one-way plane tickets in their stockings, a present they think is for them but let me assure you it is most definitely for me. They get extra time with both sets of grandparents and I get time to not answer questions or monitor bedtime or make lunch.

The only hitch this year is Sean is off during my no-kid escapade. Don’t get me wrong; I love my husband very, very much and I enjoy any time we get to spend together. However, last year I had every day to myself because Sean was at work. I spent as much time as I wanted on my photo albums and reading and, well, doing nothing, which I justified by scurrying around the house right before Sean got home, wiping the countertops with a Clorox wipe in a lame attempt at cleaning, then lighting candles so the house smelled like I cleaned, all while a Stouffer’s entrée was heating up in the oven. It was a good, good week.

(Before anyone tells me I don’t need to defend my reading and scrapbooking and general laziness one week a year: I know I don’t. But there’s a part of me that thinks I do. I pacify her with a jug of Clorox wipes and do my best to ignore her.)

So this week we’ll be together. I’ve set a few general ground rules that should help. Number one: I’m not ironing, so Sean can’t wear anything that needs to be ironed unless, of course, he wants to do it himself. Number two: I am not answering any questions beyond, “How are you?” to which I will reply, “Fabulous.” This week I am plum out of answers. And finally, number three: I am not fixing lunch for anyone but myself. I recently heard from a family friend whose husband just retired. She sent him back to work part-time because, as she said, “I said in sickness and in health but not for lunch.” I totally understand.

So tomorrow begins our kid-free couple of days. I feel certain they will be wonderfully relaxing and rejuvenating as long as the iron and the oven remain in the off position, that is.