So the exodus has started. The kids are heading home from the furthest corners of this small island, dragging dirty duvet covers filled with even dirtier clothes. Son number one was the first one to turn up. He got home before I finished work, which meant that he'd had several hours to raid the fridge, trash the kitchen and put some very loud music on my Sonos system (this was a Christmas present from the husband, but is randomly used by anyone who crosses our threshold - heaven forbid I should ever want to play my Barry Manilow).
My washing machine has been going non-stop since yesterday at 11.00am now and has started weeping gently between cycles, having got used to only going on once a week. I was doing my small bit of ironing yesterday, and son number two kept sneaking the odd bit into my ironing basket, concealing it under one of the husband's shirts, in the hope that I wouldn't be able to tell his jeans from the husband's. Mind you, I'm not too sure that I'd like to see the husband in son number one's super skinny jeans. I don't know about you, but I do prefer an element of mystery where clothing is involved. No one likes to see what's on offer before you've even checked out the menu do they?
My sister in law, Mrs W and her beau Mr G have also arrived, getting here from 'oop north' yesterday afternoon, clutching flowers and alcohol. As I was popping the flowers into a vase, the husband came in and offered to do it for me. Well. This was a big surprise, I can tell you. Leaving him with some daffodils which were already in the vase, and a beautifully wrapped bunch of hyacinths, I headed off to correct an email he was writing (see, there is always an ulterior motive). When I returned, the vase was sitting on the middle of the kitchen table. I couldn't really make out the shorter hyacinths, because they had been shoe horned into a one square inch of space in the centre of the daffodils. I have decided that flower arranging is not the husband's forte. Mind you, one look at the hedge-that-was outside our house tells me that his attributes are not those of the green-fingered kind.
My nephew, Master J came over last night, bringing various bin liners of clothes and shoes. He had had what is commonly known as 'a clear out', and was proffering trainers, shirts, coats and various other items to son number one. If he declined, then it went to the husband, then me (not too sure what I want with football boots) and then onto son number two.
My kitchen floor looked like a jumble sale, and the men in my house are now the proud owners of several new pairs of shoes, while I have the best coat ever for cold dog walks. The dogs have ripped my old coat to shreds with their excited jumping up and down, so I was thrilled to have a very posh coat for my walks now. It is a bit big though, and the husband suggested that I might have to wear a couple of extra jumpers, thermals and an electric blanket to fill it properly. It's either that, or I live on cake for the rest of my life to pad it out.
The bad news is that daughter number two is yet to turn up. I have hidden my make up, my expensive Spanx tights and all my shoes in the hope that they will still be here after she leaves again on Sunday. Mind you, she will probably bring some stuff with her, and will leave that behind. Like gluten free rolls and tortillas.
Oh great, I knew I'd made room in the freezer earlier in the week for a good reason...