For the last nine million years, or however long it is we’ve had children, TheBloke (TM) and I have alternated weekend lie-ins. I get a lie-in on the Saturday, TheBloke (TM) takes the Sunday.
For those of you without children, “lie-in” here is a figurative concept, lasting no longer than 8.15 a.m., otherwise there will be resentment and possibly bloodshed. It is also usually attempted against a background of tantrums and/or impromptu music groups featuring a recorder.
The parent who has not been allocated the lie-in gets up with the children, makes them breakfast whilst half-asleep, answers twenty-two questions about which is our second-favourite character in Alvin and the Chipmunks, then eventually after the three-course breakfast demanded by the children, collapses in front of the TV once completing UN-style negotiations over which TV programme is deemed acceptable by both children.
Well, a few weeks ago, a friend came to stay, bringing her children for a sleepover with ours. In the morning, her children happily played on their tablets, until about 9.30 a.m., at which time she came downstairs looking showered, refreshed and happy.
THIS IS A GAME CHANGER.
Neither of our children is a tiny tot who will expire from a later breakfast. Both of them are perfectly capable of operating their tablets. Generally, they don’t try to kill each other.
So now on weekend mornings, YoungestGirl waits until her Gro-Clock has gone off, and then after a mandatory toilet visit, pops into EldestGirl’s room, whilst she plays with her Kindle Fire Kids, learning phonics and numbers, and EldestGirl watches unutterable crap of adults opening children’s toys on YouTube Kids on my ancient iPad.
They have headphones. Headphones are mandatory.
TheBloke (TM) and I both get a lie-in until 8.15 which frankly, getting this twice a week feels like I’ve spent a month at a luxury retreat.
When we do emerge from our duveted chrysallis a full hour later than usual, we are slightly more awake, slightly more willing to name our second-favourite Chipmunk (Eleanor is the correct answer, by the way), and slightly more willing to be almost-adequate parents for the rest of the day.
And if CookieSwirlC is available for babysitting at other times, I’m totally up for that.