Posted by: crustynomad | May 4, 2008

Being a parent: All the fun of the unfair

I haven’t posted much on here of late but I’m not having a normal time at the moment. The term ‘even keel’ may present itself in about three weeks if I’m lucky once ‘stuff’ is out of the way.

I felt I had to write about yesterday though because it highlights what many parents are going through at this time.

It’s a bank holiday weekend here and the weather was supposed to be at its best on the first day.

Before we could go anywhere – and this sounds barmy – we had to buy a new pair of shoes for our eldest as she’d lost one. Hopefully the missing one will turn up before she goes back to school on Tuesday or else we’ll need to buy another pair. Grrrr!

We went to a huge Tescos and because eldest had been bought something, the younger two wanted something as well. This I refused cue strops aplenty but they can’t have gifts every time we go into a shop – they get spoilt enough as it is.

That was £5 and I bought a cheap T-Shirt for me as I needed one too. That was only £3 so not too bad. It was this point we decided to go to the coast, sunny Hunstanton, to be specific so with Petrol it was another £25 which considering it’s roughly £5 a gallon now won’t last us too long.

As a timesaver we did a drivethru at McDs which ended up at another £13 so before we’d left the city I’d spent £46. 😦

The trip took an hour or so and once we arrived we parked up – parking £2.70 – we headed to a funfair…or should that be unfair? Even the most basic games were £2 a throw so with 3 children that’s £6 to keep them amused for 20 seconds for some useless tat that they don’t really want.

We did this once – hook-a-duck – and the items were clearly rubbish and 10 minutes later 2 of my 3 wanted to change what they had.

We played on a wild west shooting game for £3 which wasn’t too bad but they didn’t win anything thing so wasn’t a massive hit.

There was a grand crazy golf game which was set on a pirate island but for the five of us would’ve cost £18 which I find very difficult to justify but it means my children are disappointed again.

On the beach we had fun running around which goes to show you don’t have to pay through the nose for expensive games to be happy. Then it was time for ice creams, with a flake of course, amounting to a further £3.60. This took money spent for the day up to £61.30 and I was spent up.

Before going back to the car the children had more fin on a free park and assault course. I swer they were happier when activities cost nothing.

We all wanted a drink by now so we went to another Tesco and I managed to get a few bargains to snack on to keep them going till we got home. That was about £2.50.

Back home Jo wanted some nice crusty bread to go with some chicken for a light tea but ended up getting ‘a few more bits’ taking her purchasing to £5. An expensive baguette if you ask me.

So there you have it. Even with being a killjoy I’d managed to spend nearly £70 and they want to do the same again today. We will have fun but we will go for a little adventure somewhere nearby with a park and take a pack lunch with us so it won’t cost the earth. It’s all about how you sell the activity to your children.

A bit of planning – something we didn’t have yesterday – and you can save quite a bit of money. In fact, you can read some other tips on saving while on vacation on another page on this blog.

Have fun! 😀

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