As I mentioned last week, we’ve been on holidays.  We spent some time down at beautiful Jervis Bay, one of the most un-spoilt parts of the NSW south coast. And we thought it might be nice to take Birdy on a whale-watching cruise.  There were a number of families like us who were taking little kids on the cruise, anticipating the joy on their children’s faces when they saw whales and dolphins in the wild.  But as soon as we got out on the open ocean, they were all throwing up.  One of the other two-year-olds puked and then when straight to sleep.  Birdy just got sick and went to sleep on my husband’s shoulder. As you can imagine, he had a fantastic time, holding a sleeping child and trying to throw up over her shoulder without waking her, which provided the other passengers with some light entertainment.

But of course it was all worth it when we saw the whales… um… what whales?  I saw a tiny little spout of water in the distance, but that was it.  No whales, no dolphins. Not even a tuna fish. Apparently there was a whale out there but he was very camera shy.  And none of the kids saw anything because they were all asleep.  Apparently that’s what kids do when they get seasick… I don’t know why they don’t put that on the brochure.  Who wouldn’t want to pay $150 so their kids can throw up and then go to sleep?  But I think it’s funny how sometimes as parents we put so much effort into planning an outing with our child and then when we get there it might be a total disaster.

I remember when Birdy was about one and a half, I got all excited about taking her to see the baby farm animals at our local shopping centre. But once we arrived, she wouldn’t go near the animals, she just cried and wanted to be picked up.  I also very clearly remember our first zoo trip.  The thing Birdy got most excited about was seeing herself in a mirror. That was a little disappointing… What’s that old saying?  You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink… There’s really no such thing as compulsory fun, is there?

Have you ever planned an outing or a holiday with your kids that went really wrong? Or has there been a time when your best efforts ended in disaster? You thought it was going to be a wonderful day out, but your children had other ideas… If your child cried through an entire Wiggles concert, or got scared by the crowds at the Easter Show, we’d all love to hear your disaster stories.

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