Here is my checklist for my top ten pre-holiday jobs:
1: Get up to date with the laundry and then make everyone wear the same final outfit for the last three days before the holiday! Dirtying out those clothes means minimum dirty washing left at home...because you know that you'll be bringing home two suitcases full of clothes that will need to be laundered!
2: Use up all the perishable food in your house. The week before holidays is the time for creating inventive concoctions made from all the fresh food that is left in your kitchen. Wasting it is not an option for me, so it's a time for getting creative. No one wants to return home from their holidays to find a sack of festering potatoes or a fridge full of slimy salad...so use it up!
3: Empty and clean all the bins. Returning home to a stench filled house because of some unmentionable object lurking in an unemptied bin is not a nice welcome home!
4: Set up your Sky Planner with all those TV shows you are going to miss. Yes I know this is shallow, but if I forget to set up The Bachelor (with Spencer from Made in Chelsea) to record, I will actually cry.
5: Get your pets to have their own holiday with the neighbours! Spinky the hamster loves a change of scenery and enjoys the being spoiled for a week by a family who still see her as a novelty when we are away.
6: Don't forget all your paperwork....copies of insurance documents, driving licences, passports, tickets, maps etc. etc. Get a nice big folder and put everything safely in one place!
7: Make a list of things to take. With the uncertainty of the current weather system in Europe this means remembering wellies, waterproofs, sunblock and sunglasses to cover all eventualities. Writing lists will mean you won't forget something essential. Travel Sickness Tablets and Sea bands are top of my 'Do Not Forget' list!!
8: Tell the neighbours you are away so they can keep an eye on things for you. Make sure they have your contact details. A bit of peace of mind is priceless.
9: Take a rucksack full of favourite toys, comics and snacks to placate toddlers who do not relish the prospect of travelling for hours and have no concept of the delayed gratification of getting to somewhere nice at the other end. Buy some new and exciting bits and bobs in the hope that they will distract said toddler for at least a few hours before the onset of a tantrum!
10: Prepare for your arrival home before you leave....make the beds, clean the loos and make everything tidy. Make sure you have a bottle of Cravendale in the fridge that will last unopened for a few weeks and a loaf of bread in the freezer so that whatever time you get back you can have a cup of coffee and a slice of toast to tide you over!
This is my entry for the Come Home to a Cuppa Linky Challenge, sponsored by Cravendale.