Handbooks Can Avoid Trouble on Holidays and in the Workplace

Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales), May 4, 2011 | Go to article overview

Handbooks Can Avoid Trouble on Holidays and in the Workplace


Byline: BETHAN DARWIN

I SPENT Easter weekend in a fabulous holiday home in Llanuwchllyn, Bala, with my two sisters and our respective families.

The three of us are close and get on well but we have seven children between us, six of whom are aged six and under and the main thing our lovely husbands have in common is that they married a sister each. We had never before tried going away together as families, all sleeping under one roof. Would we have fun? Or just an enormous row? We followed the handbook to shared family holiday success. Although not written down anywhere, we know this handbook well, having seen our parents make good use of it when we were children. It includes the following rules: 1. Every adult must take their turn at domestic chores - cooking, cleaning, washing up. No rota is drawn up for these tasks - you must work out for yourself when it is your turn and under no circumstances do you miss it. Ever. Not even if horribly hungover; 2. All food and drink items, irrespective of who purchased them, become communal property on entering the kitchen. There is no such thing as mine; only ours; 3. A good long walk every day to tire everyone out is essential; 4. You do not shout at other people's children unless they are in danger. Discretion must be exercised in border-line cases where a child's actions could potentially be classified as more irritating than dangerous and: 5. Lots of wine. The unwritten family handbook ensured we all had a great weekend. We had more time and fresh air together than we've had in years. We saw beautiful mountains, lovely Lake Bala and a lot of sheep.

Our children laughed and played together which was a joy to watch. Granted they argued, but only a bit and only then about minor things like who was sitting/sleeping/playing where. We're already talking about where we'll go next year. Well, the sisters are at least. …

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Handbooks Can Avoid Trouble on Holidays and in the Workplace
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