So while I continue to mull over our empire expansion (convert the shed/buy a VW camper van/stick a yurt somewhere?) I am immediately distracted by the arrival of the school holidays. The six weeks starts so well, driving back slowly through the village after school’s out, children hanging from the car windows whooping and waving their half melted ice creams and then bounding headlong into the neighbour’s paddling pool fully uniformed. And we are still celebrating at supper with fully loaded burgers and summer gifts of old tennis racquets when the conversation comes around to Where We Will Be Going On Our Holidays. Which of course we won’t be. And I assumed they had realised that because, well, we have a B&B and August is like the primest time ever. So we heard all about where some of their friends were going and it was a bit eye popping (Galapagos Islands, Cuba, Portofino) which made me wonder if it was only us hit by this recession and actually the rest of the South West is bobbing around in piles of cash? But that’s not the point. The point is I had to face the three of them over the kitchen table and tell them there would be no holiday as we were responsible for other people’s holidays. Which is actually rather important and means we need to be at home and available but also fairly quiet in the garden. It was never going to be well received but in hindsight I could have delivered the news better. Maybe by immediately serving up a gigantic chocolate cake with maltesers stuck all over it and a large sign saying DON’T HOLD BACK. Still those three kids manned up after the initial whinging, a few tears and rather too much indignance. And in true Enid Blyton style we pulled it back from the brink by writing a large list of all the fun things we could do without getting on a plane. So now we are working our way through them. Mostly in the right spirit but occasionally through gritted smiles (mine) and professional squabbling (them). Coupled with me and The Husband juggling our day jobs and B&B arrivals and departures, I think I am going to need a long holiday once the children are back at school. I hear Portofino is delightful in September.