Summer is here and I’m prepared

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I’m sure the teachers will all be enjoying their ‘well-earned’ rest over the next eight weeks – but spare a thought for the parents.

Eight weeks is a long time to keep children occupied, particularly given the vagaries of the Scottish climate.

You can hardly plan anything even 24 hours in advance as it changes so quickly.

When my two were young it wouldn’t have been the much-anticipated and long-promised picnic was held in the middle of the living floor while the rain beats against the windows.

And hands up how many parents have found themselves sitting in the cinema watching the latest Disney cartoon while the tar melted on the roads outside!

I’ve certainly been through all that ... and a generation later I’m experiencing it all again with Emma’s pair.

I always try and help her out as much as I can, taking days off during the school holidays to entertain my darling grandchildren.

I love it but it’s certainly hard work.

And I think the older you get, you may have more patience with children but whether you’ve got the energy is a different matter.

It wouldn’t be the first time she has collected them from mine and, whisper it, even before dinner, I’ve found myself flopped on the couch clutching a little glass of something before I’ve got the energy to cook.

And talking of couches, parents are always being encouraged to stop their children turning into the proverbial couch potatoes, sitting watching TV or playing computer games all day – and in some cases, most of the night.

Yes, there are free events and activities on locally and across the country but there are always added costs of getting there, as well as buying food and drinks for hungry children.

I really feel for those on low incomes and take my hat off to them, I really don’t know how they do it.

Probably because they have to say no to their children on more occasions than they want to.

Yes, I know that it’s important we don’t hand everything on a plate to our children and grandchildren, but we all like to allow them to experience as many opportunities as possible.

So I’ve got myself well stocked up with (healthy) drinks and snacks, lots of colouring and story books and a growing list of child-friendly events on across Central Scotland.

I may be prepared for the school summer holidays but come back to me in two months to find out if I’ve survived!