Think schoolies was bad? Read what this family of five got up to on their holiday.

A family holiday may sound idyllic.

A Family Holiday. Sounds idyllic doesn’t it?  In my mind’s eye I could just picture us – my husband having a quiet chuckle watching our three children bury each other in the sand as they laughed with glorious gay abandon. There I would be, rocking a pants suit looking JUST like Jennifer Hawkins, laying quietly beside him on the rolling sand hill, sipping a Mai Tai.

Reality Check.

For a start, I don’t own and therefore will never rock a pantsuit, secondly, my children cannot physically come into contact with each other without it degenerating into some kind of UFC smack down. So this was a dream – at best.

 Just as an FYI, you should know that this post is sponsored by Telstra. But all opinions expressed by the author are 100% authentic and written in her own words.

See the thing is, I wanted to take a few days out from the very long school holiday stretch and keep the kids entertained but accommodation costs being what they were during this time, I knew we could only afford a short stretch. We’d only really taken holidays that were 3 days in duration and we have been so close to our own home, that we may as well just have just hooked up Foxtel, ordered some overpriced takeout and gotten someone to come in each day and turn down our beds, hospital corner style.

This time around, we still stayed rather close to home but we had to take a boat to our destination. Sounds exotic doesn’t it?  Well sure, if your idea of wallaby poo putt-putt is exotic, then yeah, I guess we were living the dream. Here’s how my family holiday ‘disaster’ unfolded.

After being there for half a day, in our wisdom, we (myself and my girlfriend) traded time with our husbands. They went surfing and when they returned, we in turn, swapped a couple of hours in the afternoon sun lounging in the Bali Hut, overlooking the lapping water and sipping champagne. Do you hear what I’m saying, we went drinking, the men were in charge. So, I guess you can understand how bad I felt when we sauntered back into our room, quite merry, confronted with this:

The budding Tony Hawke

Apparently my son thought he was Tony Hawke. He had tried to ride the much coveted skateboard down a concrete path and the concrete path had decided otherwise.


There was blood. There were tears . The kids were flipping out and did I mention there was a whole lotta blood?  Luckily the men handled it well and we could all see the funny side by the end of the night. Did I say all?  Well perhaps Sam was less ecstatic.

That was on day one.

Day two saw the children’s feet get cut up by the glass “jewels” that outlined the dolphin at the bottom of the pool. Two of the children also had an unfortunate head butting incident on the pool slide that meant the tooth fairy made an impromptu visit to the island with much fanfare. Add to that, the fact that it was preferable to sleep outside on the balcony having the blood sucked out of us by ten thousand mosquitoes, than sweat it out in the air-conditioner-less room and I think you’re getting the gist.

But of course it’s on checkout where the real pain begins. Being on holidays, no matter where you are, it’s all about getting loose and if available, racking it up on the room charge. And didn’t we rack it up. Breakfast, lunch and dinner, we ate like kings. Of course there was no alternative, they did kind of have the market cornered, but we were like the Titantic, we were unstoppable.

The men’s idea of holiday parenting

Hello two thousand dollar room charge for three days’ worth of meals and overpriced alcohol.  

After we repaid our national debt, we were allowed to leave the island and get back on the boat that afternoon. We dodged the wallaby poo, dragged our luggage through the soft sand and loaded 5 very tired and irritable children onto the boat.  

By the end, I was simply exhausted, surely there was an easier, less expensive way to keep the kids entertained over the school holidays? One that didn’t involve blood loss and the Tooth Fairy?


 Do you have a family holiday disaster story to share?

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