The Sprogs go back to school today. I was really excited about it a week ago, but this morning I’m feeling sad. It’s like childbirth – I’ve already forgotten the pain and I want another one, as soon as possible. We had fun, the Sprogs and I. Sprog 1, bless her, told my friend the best part of the holidays was spending time with me (rather than being sent to vacation care, but I’m glossing over that bit). All the annoying bits about school are haunting me too. Starting with the bill for their school supplies – SIX whiteboard markers at $4 a pop, SIX glue sticks, textas (“not connector” – WHY not connector??? We have a house full of connector textas, but noooooo, I have to buy a whole new set of not-connector textas for some reason), tissues, liquid soap, two blue pens, two red pens, 3 HB pencils etc etc. Last night, while making their school lunches, I started having flashbacks about the 412 school lunches I made last year (and all that mashed cheesestik I had to scrape out of the lunchbags first). Then there’s the other stuff I’ll have to do: remember to wash their one sport shirt (not fish it out of the dirty clothes basket and sponge it off), take them to school, pick them up again, canteen duty, reading in class. reading at night, homework, band practice, gymnastics … School holidays were sooooo much simpler. We lay around watching TV every morning. I made lunch when it was lunchtime, or I bought it. The kids wore what they liked, sometimes even their pyjamas, for the whole day. Sure, I over-scheduled the middle bit, but things eased off towards the end. We even spent a few days at home without any social engagements (mainly due to cancellations by others, but still) or me wanting to kill the Sprogs. It was quite lovely, or at least, not terrible. I wonder what next Christmas will bring? Will I ever get a chance to spend six weeks with my kids again? Whether I have a job or not, I think the days of them wanting to spend their holidays with their mum will end pretty soon. They’ll be off, doing their own thing, with their friends … But I am not going to beat myself up about whether I made the most of the school holidays. Well, not much.