If you have children who are away at university, it’s that point of the year. We can almost hear the groans of delight and dread as the peace and quiet that it took you 6 months to get used to (and even start enjoying) is about to be broken. Uni is out, which means the return of your offspring is imminent. We look at what’s about to change, what to expect and how to prepare…
It takes a while to get used to your children being away at Uni. Then, it takes a while to get used to them being back. Several years of hokey-cokey between term time and holiday. A period of ping-pong whereby just as you’d settled into one routine, it’s time to adapt to another.
So what’s likely to change and is there any way of easing into it?
If you’d got used to quiet evening meals, lovingly prepared, then that’s about to change. When they are around for mealtime expect to have to make triple. No, make that quadruple. You need to account that you’ll be feeding a frenzy of hungry teenagers or twenty somethings. Also make sure you stay stocked up on stuff for a midnight snack, or be prepared for plenty of carry-out . They’ll almost
Breakfast is the one meal of the Some things are unlikely to change, quiet breakfasts are still likely to be quiet breakfasts (students tend not to surface until the middle of the day) there will undoubtedly be some negative effects though… expect the fridge to be empty, even half-an hour after you just got back from the supermarket.
Without appreciating it, you’ll have almost certainly adapted to a routine where you can pretty much use the bath or shower whenever you like. As long as you’re a morning person, you should still be fine. If, on the other hand, you’re expecting to take a bath after lunch, or nip in the shower early evening, before heading out to meet your friends at the theatre, you may find someone has got there before you. Not just a bit before you. At least an hour before you. And they’re still in there, soaking in the now lukewarm water of a bath. Bang on the door as much as you like, but it won’t make any difference. They’ll almost certainly be listening to some “choons” on their wireless headphones. So, as we said, keep it to before lunch and you’ll be able to stay fresh as a daisy every day.
Washing and Ironing
Light loads in the washing machine are about to become a thing of the past. It’s back to your previous life anticipating an overloaded washing basket. Well, overloaded if you go round and pick it all up off the floor. Plenty of only-worn-once clothes, many, many odd socks, and probably some paper tissues (you’ll need to check every single pocket for those – and you still won’t find them all).
If you’ve shelled out on a motorcar for your loved one (or, impressively, they’ve managed to pay for one themselves) then you’ll be relishing the fact that they’re self-sufficient transport-wise. The alternative is that you’re going to be back to the role of providing a sort of exclusive parental Uber style taxi service. It might well manifest itself as a request for a ride back from the kebab shop in town at 3am – when they’ve just discovered the last night-bus was over 3 hours ago. Expect fuel bills to rise and best check you won’t exceed your insurance mileage allowance.
The other thing you’ll have to tackle is stuff. It might be a boot-full of bed linen, or a box full of coursework, but you’ll need to find somewhere to store it. If you’re lucky that’s the loft, but if you’re space limited that might be more of a challenge. One solution is to leave it all at Uni – so it is there when they return in the autumn. If your budding scholar is based at a London University – Birbeck, Goldsmiths, Brunel, Imperial, King’s or City – then we can help with that. Head on over to our Student Storage page and find out about the range of units available, get a quote and reserve a unit.
Sadly, we can’t help you with any of the other stuff, but we’re sure having your loved one home for the summer by far outweighs the negatives.