Freelancing during the summer hols with kids

Happy Summer Hols, Peeps!

Oh come on now, they ARE happy. Even if we are all frantically scrambling to figure out what to do with the kiddies while we work.

A few weeks ago I spoke about the ‘Feast and Famine’ problem faced by freelancers. At the time I was experiencing a famine. Now, OF COURSE, the three boys are on holiday and my services are suddenly in hot demand. I’ve had to recruit a few friends to mother my kids during the week while I rush off to work.

In my previous life as an artist, I was unyieldingly selfish with my summer hols. I simply refused to work, locking up the business for a month or more and heading off to the beach with the kids. Of course they were younger then, and more needy. My business was also very seasonal, crazy between September and Christmas and then peaking again in February and March. I could afford to take the summer off, it was dead quiet anyway.

Now that I’m a starving writer side-lining as a temp, I’m finding the summer a busier time. For the next few weeks, I’ll be out all day working. Just as the weather is improving, too, drat! So I had a few meetings with my minions dear children to clarify my expectations.

  • One teenager is in charge of ensuring the bathroom adheres to a certain standard of hygiene.
  • The other teenager is in charge of the kitchen.
  • Everyone will take turns cooking.
  • The ten-year-old, being too young to stay home without a grownup, will spend his days with various friends, even though this is totally unfair and I am the worst mother ever.
  • If there is any fighting over the TV, PS3 or computer, I’ll hide all of the plugs and cables and disconnect the internet. So they need to sort it out amicably or suffer. Definitely, worst mother ever.

We’ve got great neighbours, friends nearby, and even favourite cousins and aunties who are coming to stay. One aunty is visiting now, teaching the boys new card games and lazing on the sofa with them. Their dad is coming to visit in a few weeks too, the highlight of the holiday. So it won’t be too bad.

We’ll make use of the long evenings for after-work beach picnics, and the weekends will be fabulous. It’ll be fine. Fingers crossed!

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