Emma Hollingworth: Green with envy over outdoor fun

Molly Smith, with Tilly and Elsie Fisher at the Teddy Bear's Picnic and fun day at Cragg Vale Park, Cragg Vale
Molly Smith, with Tilly and Elsie Fisher at the Teddy Bear's Picnic and fun day at Cragg Vale Park, Cragg Vale
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I was green with envy last week.

Monday mornings are usually the most hectic rush in our house as everyone blearily has to get up and get on with their working week.

Three kids have to be dragged unwillingly from their beds and shoved into starchy uniforms and clothes before forcing down a bowl of cereal then being marched complainingly to school.

But last week it was only me who had to rush around in those early hours when even the sun is still in bed, yawning lazily from behind the moon.

Distant rumblings of snoring were heard from behind various doors as my family took pleasure in the fact it was the half term holidays by sleeping like lions in their beds.

At first I carefully tiptoed around the house, edging the shower on so it made the least noise possible and thoughtfully closing the door before putting on the bathroom light so no eyes were hurt by the light.

On day one I opened all the curtains, cleared up, unstacked the dishwasher and even got breakfast stuff ready and laid out everyone’s clothes before creeping out of the front door, leaving everyone still happily in the land of nod.

But my sunny mood soon wore off as I trudged back home weighed down with more work that needed doing the moment I walked through the door.

Much as I liked hearing that everyone had had a “marvellous” day playing outdoors and eating picnics in the park (despite the weather!) I definitely felt a pang of jealousy.

And when the other half tried to tell me how tired he felt running around after the offspring all day I am afraid I didn’t have much sympathy ready to give him.

The bubble of niceness had definitely burst the next day as my aching body was rudely dragged into being awake with the shrillness of the alarm clock.

I grumpily threw back the covers and stomped into the bathroom, sparing no thought to the other half trying to keep asleep and ignore my mood.

Each year we sit down with our diaries and try and split the holidays fairly to make sure each of us has time at home with the offspring, to avoid the hideous cost of childcare – which is extraordinary when you have three children.

At the time it seems the one who has to deal with the children has the rough end of the stick, but in hindsight this is much more pleasant.

Who wouldn’t want to play dens in the woods in Firth Park or go underground in the county’s only mining museum with children eager to explore?

Sheffield City Council is actively encouraging children to get out and about this half term and beyond, by awarding points on special children’s Passports to Learning.

The Sheffield Children’s University (CU) recognises and celebrates the importance of out of school hours learning.

There are many linked activities across the city which kids can do to achieve points on their passports like karate, dance, cookery and forest school.

One point is awarded to every hour doing an activity and these hours are converted in to bronze, silver and gold awards.

For more information visit: https://www.sheffield.gov.uk/education/information-for-parentscarers/at-school/sheffield-childrens-university.html