It’s now been a week since our kids went off to uni. We live in a rural area, so we’ve always known that should our kids wish to pursue higher education, they’d be leaving home at eighteen. Our daughter went off two years ago, and our son this year. They’re in two different universities very far apart, and for the first time in twenty years, my husband and I have the house to ourselves…and two fish, two dogs and two cats.
1. The washing has reduced by 80%.
2. We have more cups than I would have believed possible.
3. The shoe pile at the front door has reduced by 75%.
4. The dishwasher gets used only occasionally and we struggle to fill it.
5. The food bill has more than halved. (The proportional reduction was much less than one quarter when our daughter left two years ago, so I’ll leave you to extrapolate just how much a teenage boy can eat.)
6. There are no piles of shoes/clothes/general mess left all over the house.
7. There is still milk left in the fridge when I get home from work.
8. A loaf of bread now lasts several days, and not fifteen minutes.
9. The television volume never has to be raised to compensate for drumming, marimba playing or loud (very tuneful) singing from the bathroom.
10. It is eerily quiet and the pets are obsessively loving, particularly the cats, except for the last hour because I’ve just stuck the deflea/worm stuff on their necks and apparently they both hate me now.
It’s weird. I’m not sure how long it will take us to get used to this state of living. But kids grow up, become adults and move away all the time. It’s just that this time it’s us that it’s happened to.