Day in the life of a stay at home parent when the kids are finally at school

I recently wrote a blog based on my experiences with being at work when both my kiddies were finally at school.

Because I was working part time, I had a few days a fortnight where I was at home. So the following is based loosely on my first day at home when both kids were finally at school.

Car Trip

Image via Giphy

They’re gone! They’re BOTH gone! The house is so empty!

The house is so empty…

Right! This is the perfect time to do housework uninterrupted.

This is so lame. You crave an interruption. Where’s a wailing kid when you need one?

Actually, why should you need an excuse to not do housework? You’ve been working 24/7 for the past 7 years. Put your feet up sista!

Well, after you’ve finished putting away the Lego.

Bestie rings. Goody, a chance for uninterrupted adult conversation!

“Hey, can I ask you something important?” she says breathlessly. Excellent! This is the opportunity you’ve been waiting for. You take a deep breath and get ready to give a scathing assessment of her latest beau.

She continues. “Thing is, I’m super busy at work this week, so can you be at my house tomorrow to let the plumber in? Says he’s coming sometime between 9am and 3pm. The kids will be at school, right?”

Hmmph. Just because you’re not in paid employment, doesn’t mean your time isn’t valuable.

“Well, I’m actually busy tomorrow,” you mumble, searching for a plausible-sounding excuse. “I have to, erm, pay bills.” Hope she doesn’t remember that you direct debit everything and even if you didn’t, this isn’t the 1950s and paying bills is no longer an hours-long endeavour.

Feel guilty. Ring her back almost immediately and agree to wait for the plumber, as long as you can watch her Netflix. Besides, you’ve got the perfect pass-out from housework all of tomorrow (even if the plumber ends up coming at 9.01am).

Bear watching tv

You cue up that French noir film you’ve been meaning to see for ages, and get excited at the prospect of not having to share your pack of chips or eat them while hiding in the laundry like a fugitive.

You’ve eaten the whole pack in 5 minutes flat without realising.

Ok you’re kinda a bit bored. You’re not used to this uninterrupted me-time.

You can’t figure this movie out. Has your brain gone mushy?

Maybe you should just watch something that you can easily follow, like Peppa Pig.

Realise that you were that close to actually putting on Peppa Pig.

Perhaps a cryptic crossword is a good idea. Aren’t they meant to be good for the brain?

Type “how to do cryptic crosswords” into search engine.

The phone rings.

Uh oh. Is that the school’s number?

Continue to stare at the phone with mounting panic. It rings out. Oh well, they’ll ring back straight away if it’s important.

Get back to the couch and resume your movie.

Can’t concentrate. Maybe you should just ring the number back.

Pressing the call button, heart racing, palms sweaty… wow, this is way worse than that time in high school you rang what’s-his-face to ask him out to skating.

Oh phew, it’s just an automated library message telling you that your books are overdue.

Remember that before kids, you NEVER had a library fine.


A photo of my overdue books. Just kidding, they were Danielle Steel novels. 

Resume watching movie.

Bored again.

Rack brains. Think. What did the kids do when they were home all day? Tried to kill each other, but there is no one else around right now so that’s out of the question.

Continue your online education on cryptic crosswords.

Get distracted and go down a few rabbit holes.

An article catches your attention – about how school drop-off zones are a “hotbed of sexual intrigue”. Hooked, you read on, while vaguely wondering how you got here from “cryptic crosswords”.

According to the article. some parents use the schoolyard as an opportunity to flirt with teachers or other parents.

Briefly contemplate dressing better for the upcoming pick up (hee) than you did for the morning’s drop off. Not that it’s difficult to improve on pyjamas.

Shake your head. What were you thinking? It’s a stupid idea for a number of reasons:

  • You’re too lazy for an affair.
  • The timing is rotten. It’s a mere few months till winter and you want to start growing out your body hair.
  • Actually you’re quite fond of your hubby.
  • Despite progress in gender equality, female parents outnumber male parents about 20-1 in the schoolyard. You’ve seen women clamour over the most ordinary-looking dads because of their novelty value.  So the stats are heavily skewed towards your husband if he ever decided to ‘play’ this game – and you can’t let him win, can you?

Opt for a luxurious bubble bath.

Is this meant to be relaxing? You’ve already dropped your book in the water several times. And candles are not so ambient in broad daylight. Probably helps to get rid of the rubber duckies too.


Image: Facebook/girlslifestories

What about video games! Let’s see what all this Minecraft fuss is about. Surely you can the beat a 7 year old’s high score?

How do you even turn this thing on?

Ok, it’s on.

Oh, looks easy. Just like Tetris!

Nothing like Tetris.

Pick up time. You actually feel ready to see the kids again.

Arrive at the school. A whole bunch of mums are talking and laughing. Realise that what you’re lacking are some school mum friends.

Hmm how to break into these tight-looking groups?

Spot a mum who is hovering ever-so-slightly outside a bigger group and decide to zero in on her. Isolate from the herd and all that.


Start to wander over then suddenly notice you’d forgotten to wear a bra. Hunch over and slink back to your corner.

Kids are surprised by how happy you are to see them. You’ve missed them!

They immediately start fighting in the back seat. Sigh. Only 18 hours till they’re back at school. Can’t wait.