I am a mother to three tearaways, my toddler daughter has no sense of fear and can be found launching herself in muddy puddles after jumping from the nearest wall. My seven year old twins like nothing more than racing around the countryside, starting fights with imaginary pirates, hunting for poisonous worms in the undergrowth and scaling trees to search the terrain for enemies lurking nearby.
My life is messy, the kids are continuously covered head to toe in paint, dirt, and with whatever they had for dinner, and whilst the wild look is great for photos, it is not the way I want to present the kids when going out to eat or visiting friends.
Weekends for us are spent exploring, on day trips to safari parks, zoos, national trust estates or simply the local woods and park. Usually when we are worn out from our adventures we all collapse into the car and laziness overcomes me and I point the driver/husband in the direction of the nearest pub to avoid having to cook for five when we get home.
Therefore packing for a day out is like preparing for battle.
We cannot leave home without a change of clothes for all three kids, puddle jumping is wet work and often requires a full costume change. Nappies are a must for the toddler, alongside snacks, picnic, drink bottles, diabetic kit for my eldest daughter, and of course our trusty wipes.
Where would we be without wipes?
Within seconds of leaping out of the car and chasing her older siblings to explore my delightful little daughter usually tumbles to the ground. Unconcerned by her fall she runs towards me holding out palms smeared in mud. I am ready, pack of wipes in hand I catch her before she imprints upon me and clear the dirt from her fingers.
Picnic time arrives and my eldest daughter uses the wipes to clean her hands before testing her blood sugar levels, my other two give their fingers and cheeks a quick once over before diving into the sandwich barrel. Bits of jam sandwich attach to my sons cheeks, cheese spread decorates my toddler’s nose and my eldest daughter looks on in disdain at her food smeared siblings.
Post meal, the wipes arrive to save the day, removing food from faces and restoring normal colour into cheeks. The wipes hide the evidence of chocolate buttons for dessert and cover the ice cream they had as an additional extra treat. A nappy change means the wipes stay out a while longer and then we set off and play again.
The picnic bag goes under the buggy and the football is retrieved, a misplaced kick sends the pushchair careering into nearest puddle and the handle is scattered with splashes of mucky water from the overspill. A quick wipe round and beauty is bestowed upon the buggy once more!
The day starts to prepare for night and supper time starts to stir in our tummies and we head out in the car in search for somewhere to sit and have tea. I reach into my bag and wipe off the glare of the day before hurriedly re applying makeup. Each child is given a wipe to tidy themselves up, to make them ‘presentable’ for tea.
Wipes: Never leave home without them!