This weekend marked yet another opportunity for me to celebrate what’s turning into quite the protracted 40th birthday! As if my amazing trip to Melbourne wasn’t enough, I also had the pleasure of a gorgeous night of tapas and bubbles with a bunch of my besties. After some initial anxiety about where (or even whether) to celebrate, and concerns about who should or shouldn’t be invited (I do sometimes wish I lived in Downton Abbey, where everyone simply knows the protocol) I finished up partying like Prince Harry on rec leave and surrounding myself with more bubbles than a Hollywood hot tub. The notion of a set number of ‘standard drinks’ went out the window about 30 minutes in. I was pretty much in free fall after that.
Now, I rather like a quiet glass of New Zealand’s finest with dinner, but being a responsible family woman these days I really don’t indulge very often. I’m not at all accustomed to negotiating a full day at home with three children and a hangover. This morning I pulled up dustier than a drover’s drink bottle (in drought season). My wonderfully understanding husband and I tag-teamed the day’s responsibilities, but there’s little one can really do about the fact that kids (on a rainy day, what’s more!) need entertaining. Here are some of the ideas I came up with…
Top 5 rainy day games for kids (of hungover parents)
1. Hospital emergency
Oh no! There’s been a terrible accident and the busy staff at Charming A & E have a patient (reclining on the couch taking small sips of black coffee) who needs bandaging (feet only), cold packs, gentle massage and quiet voices. This patient may or may not be in a coma, rendering her speechless and unresponsive.
In this nifty reimagining of the classic tale, Cinders and her sisters (male siblings included) don their aprons and get busy ensuring their cruel stepmother (reclining on the couch taking small sips of black coffee) has her every need satisfied. While I’d stop short of any actual cruelty, I have no problem with the princess posse sweeping floors and washing windows in the name of ‘creative play’.
3. Library Stocktake
It’s time for the annual stocktake at Charming Regional Library. The General Manager is examining the paperwork (while reclining on the couch taking small sips of black coffee) and all other staff are required to participate in rehousing the collection. Books must be pulled off the shelf, all dust jackets matched with their hard covers and all components of box sets returned to their rightful positions. Books must then be returned to the shelves – spines out and in height order (you can go all out and make them alphabetise if they’re old enough!).
4. Treasure hunt
Arrrr! There’re pirates in town. And what do pirates love most? Trrrreasure! The pirates have spotted a mermaid (who’s reclining on the couch taking small sips of black coffee) and she has given them a list of things to find at the bottom of the sea. A few easy finds are good to get the ball rolling (a silver fork, a red Lego brick) but be sure to offer a few decent challenges or your pirates will be bouncing back to your tranquil spot on the rock as if they’re on a bungy rope.
5. Don’t poke the bear
We’re going on a bear hunt! Somewhere in the lounge room is a big, scary bear (reclining on the couch taking small sips of black coffee) and if you get too close the bear will growl! You can play any other game you like as long as you don’t raise your voice and you absolutely, positively DO NOT poke the bear. (I don’t think this one requires a great stretch of the imagination somehow).
What are your tips for being a responsible parent after a night of irresponsible drinking? Got any rainy day game suggestions?
This Charming Mum would like to point out that she does not condone overindulgence in the devil’s drink, but as she is about to turn 40 she reserves the right to paaaartay like it’s 1999 (when she would have been 26 and probably still just gone to work the next morning).