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26th Apr 2019

The gym?! 5 things you can get out of… just because you’re a mum

Gillian Fitzpatrick

We’re confident that we’re only LOADS of craic.

Indeed, we’ve been know to take a few rounds of Jagerbombs of a Saturday night.

But it’s also confession time: heading to a forgotten Midlands town for a ‘mad’ hen weekend is overwhelming, expensive, and frankly no longer our cup of tea (if it ever was in the first place).

Which is where the kids come in – aka the get-you-out-of-whatever-it-is-you-don’t-want-to-do ticket.

Yup, bless the little darlings they certainly have their uses. Here are five things you can legit plead ‘children’ to once the invite lands.

1) Hen weekends

As mentioned above – we’re done with hens, not least as we’re just way too broke to justify a €300 weekend away on the piss. You’d only spend the Saturday night in a dodgy nightclub sneaking off to the toilet to ‘check’ on the kids anyway. At this stage we don’t even pretend ‘we might’ go along: it’s just a polite but firm ‘no’ from the outset.

2) Work events

Any sort of out-of-office-hours get-together needs to be approached with caution. It might be labelled ‘team-building’ but that’s just a facade for freezing early Saturday mornings running around a muddy field building a tank out of twigs. Don’t be fooled by the pint and free lunch afterwards either – it’s not worth it.

3) Exercise classes

You’d only love to go to a six-week intermediate boxercise-Zumba class with your neighbour/cousin/colleague/friend, but sadly the 7pm start is bang smack in the middle of the kids’ storytime. Ah well.

4) Charity lunches

It’s not that we don’t do sponsorship, raffles, or scratch cards for good causes. But forking out a month’s worth of nappies for a hotel lunch with 500 other ladies? Not so much. The tickets are eye-watering, you have to dig out something fancy that fits, and then when the day does roll around you’re under pressure to make a bid at the auction. You usually have to down a bottle of your table’s Pinot Grigio to justify the expense of it all (and daytime drinking brings its own problems).

5) Book clubs

They always sound like a great idea – monthly get-togethers for intelligent chats over tea. In reality, you end up frantically on Wikipedia reading plot summaries two hours before you’re due to host. We’ve now accepted that the only book we’ll be reading over the next five years is The Gruffalo and any/all associated sequels.