I don't go to Ibiza often. In fact, I've only been once before, when I was 30, pre kids. But when a friend of mine invited me on a girls' holiday to the White Isle this August, I was seriously tempted. How lovely to spend four days drinking cocktails in the sun all day, dancing to David Guetta all night, and not taking responsibility for anyone or anything except my own alcohol tolerance.
But hold on a minute! my sensible side said: with a four-day drinking session comes one almighty hangover. Add that to post-party childcare (nearly as bad as post-partum childcare) and is it really worth it? Also, the Boden-wearing angel on my shoulder added, going away for four days would mean leaving the kids with the infinitely competent, but not infinitely patient Pink House Husband - was that really fair? And (more relevantly) how grumpy would he be upon my return? And finally: the cost. Ibiza may be many things, but it is certainly not cheap. After my champagne days of debauchery, would we have enough left in the coffers for the kiddies' school shoes, or would they have to be educated barefoot?
Reader, I'll cut to the chase: I went to Ibiza with my girlfriends, and partied four whole nights and days away. And then I returned to the small Pink House Dwellers and got on with my life. I'm not going to lie: the second part of this wasn't easy. HOWEVER, it was a lot easier than it could have been, as I had preplanned for such a potentially nightmarish scenario. Furthermore, were I to attempt such a holiday again (Pink House Husband says this is unlikely pre-2026), then part 2 'the return home' would be even easier, as I have learned how to be a mum-clubber, without having the kids taken by social services. Winner.
And so, for the benefit of any child-owner who wishes to go 'out-out', here are my 3 Rules of Post-Party Parenting:
1) Pre-book your bloke's own weekend away
The key here is to get in early. Find out how your man would dearly love to spend a weekend (better hope it's cheap), then get it BOOKED and IN THE DIARY. Ideally, this will be achieved a good month or so in advance of your party holiday. Booking early will make him extra grateful; he hasn't yet suffered - or even really considered - the circumstances under which such an enjoyable weekend is being proffered. Don't remind him. He then has plenty time to daydream about his upcoming weekend of mountain biking in the mud. When you return, broken, from your much less wholesome holiday, it is crucial that, at the earliest opportunity, you remind him of the untold manly joys he will soon experience, that you - yes YOU! - have enabled. Then remove yourself from his - and the kids' - presence for 24 hours, pronto. See rule 2...
2) Arrange an extra day's childcare
You might know you're coming back from Beefa on Wednesday afternoon, but no-one else has to if you follow these simple steps:
- Set your Out of Office so the world believes you'll return from rescuing the near-extinct lesser-striped lemur (if we're toying with the truth we might as well go all the way) on Friday (Friday is the best day, as then there's just one working day until the weekend when you can rest and...oh no, I forgot; we're parents)
- Book some heavy-duty (10+ hours) childcare which involves the kids being away from the house the whole of the following day, ideally including dinner time (we are blessed with an incredibly patient nanny, but you could try understanding grandparents, caring friends, or anyone over the age of 16)
- Go to bed immediately
3) Invest in THE most luxurious bedlinen
You are going to spend the entire day and night in bed, so make sure this is the BEST day/night in bed you've ever had (throbbing head and desire to vom notwithstanding). How? By investing in what can only be described as the most deliciously luxurious bedlinen known to parentkind. The luxe linen to which I refer is by Josephine Home, a refined brand that knows a thing or five about how to help you get an amazing night's (or day's) sleep; JH has supplied its super-soft sheets (made to measure in Europe) to actual Hollywood A-listers (my lips are sealed) and some of the most demanding hotel groups in the world, including the Mandarin Oriental and Soho House.
Plus, while you sleep, your bed looks like the ones in those whooshy-curtains bedrooms you see in House & Garden magazine - just with you in it, comatose.
I received my silkily gorgeous (100% Egyptian 500 thread count cotton) Josephine Home sheets, duvet cover and pillow cases in time for my post-Ibiza day off. And I'm only slightly exaggerating when I say they saved my life/relationship upon my return. In my inevitable hungover state, slipping between these fresh, cool sheets was like drinking a large glass of elderflower pimped with aspirin and Berocca. And there I stayed for the next 20 hours. And it was - despite aforementioned hangover symptoms - rather lovely.
The added bonus is these bedsheets will continue to feel amazing even when you no longer feel like shit, so it's a double investment (saving money! the kids CAN have shoes after all!). AND your partner will get to enjoy them too (if he's still speaking to/sleeping with you) so they've practically paid for themselves already. Plus, even if you haven't been partying in Ibiza, having small people is the best way to make you appreciate your pit, so make sure the limited time you spend in it, is quality time. A bit like your relationship with your partner - although let's not carry that particular metaphor too far; I'm no longer writing for more! magazine...
Anyway. Get the damn sheets and go to bloody Ibiza, is my advice. My Josephine Home duvet cover, sheet and pillowcases are from the Soft & Silky Classic Silver range. I chose the Lavender trim, but was very tempted by the white-with-Navy and white-with-Silver options. Maybe for my next holiday...
Thanks to Josephine Home for sending The Pink House such beautiful bedlinen to review. As always, all views are my own; if I don't like it, I won't write about it.
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