The big visit… when your kids and grandkids make the trip home for Christmas and move in for a few weeks over the festive season. The prospect of it can stir up a real mixed bag of emotions from excitement and anticipation to anxiety and feeling exhausted before they’ve even arrived! Planning and preparation is the key, so here are a few tips to help you get organised in order to make the holiday, and their stay, smoother and more enjoyable…
- Getting the house ready is something you can do well in advance. Making up spare rooms, changing bed linen, cleaning and dusting. Don’t do it all in one go, a little at a time won’t leave you feeling dead on your feet.
- Try to find out in advance what food they might need, especially the kids and don’t forget to factor in snacks for when energy levels dip. Probably not a bad idea to add a few essentials to the list, like wipes, nappies or formula and babyfood. After a long trip, facing the supermarket queues is probably the last thing they’ll be up for.
- If you need to organise baby equipment, do that well in advance too. Borrowing or renting travel cots, high chairs or child car seats is better than forking out for new stuff. The advantage of renting is that you can have it all delivered to your house and set up for you before your family arrives, and same for picking up, so it is a handy option (even though we’re biased!).
- If your grandkids are young, try to baby /child-proof your house as best you can. Here are a few tips from BabyCentre. It might be an idea to pack away your precious ornaments, crystal glasses or any breakables for that matter! Make sure you put the bottles of lotions and potions in bathroom on top shelves away from the grasp of little hands.
- If your children have lived abroad for a long time, do a bit of research into child-friendly activities and events. The Discover Ireland website has a Christmas activities page that’s worth checking out. There’s usually lots going on over Christmas for the little ones and there’s also the added advantage of taking the opportunity to relax while they’re out!!
- And if you plan to do a bit of babysitting to allow for the odd night out (or weekend away) to give mum and dad a break, put some thought into how you’ll entertain the grandkids…card making, colouring, play dough, painting, walks in the park etc. It’ll pay off when you’re in the throws of it.
And if you’ve queries about hiring equipment, or need advice on the essentials versus what you can manage without, just get in touch either by email or phone.