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to NOT immediately pounce on the offer of free accomodation...?

(19 Posts)
lynniep Thu 03-Apr-14 13:01:10

My MIL rang excitedly recently to tell us that she and her partner have just bought a mobile home and we can all use it. I basically said thats fantastic - thank you very much for the offer. She said we'd better 'book' soon as its being offered to both their families and will be snapped up in the summer. I again said thanks very much we'd have a think.
Don't get me wrong it looks great - a nice mobile home in a camping field - there's not much for the kids at the side, but its not far from the Lake District and its 3-4 hours away from us which isn't too bad.

She's been nagging though. And I'm starting to get a bit irritated. I've explained to her that we only have one week over the summer holidays allocated for a family holiday, and we were planning to go somewhere south, possibly even driving to France, to a holiday park with more childrens facilities and a chance of slightly better weather, with our new tent. I really don't want to spend our precious one week a year away in a field in **. I don't want to be derogatory about it because it does look lovely. It just doesnt suit our needs.

I did try to say that, and she suggested another week in summer. Its not that hard to grasp is it? that I only have so much holiday? I said 'I get * days a year and I allocate them all in January so I only have one day left and thats in case the kids are ill' She laughed like it was incredibly stupid. DH has more holiday than me (he is full time) but wouldn't dream of going away without me. I said we can't just do a weekend as its too far for one night for the boys (not much of a holiday in other words) but that was scoffed at too - why can't I take off Friday. Because I work on Friday and I don't have enough holiday to take the day off!

I feel like she's offered us something wonderful, but is now tainting it by hounding us about it (two phonecalls since the first one 10 days ago - that doesnt sound much - but she normally only rings on birthdays) and making us sound completely unreasonable. Am I compeltely unreasonable?

HecatePropylaea Thu 03-Apr-14 13:08:34

No. If you don't want it then say thanks so much, it's really kind of you but we are not going to be using it this year so you don't have to worry about saving anything. Go ahead and book up the weeks with other people, but thank you for the offer.

I think you have to be clearer than you have been so that you really spell it out to her that you won't be using it, because obviously despite all you have already said, she hasn't fully understood that you are actually turning down her offer. Otherwise she wouldn't have rung again.

I understand that she is excited about having it and is just trying to do something nice and to share, and that's lovely - but if you can't or don't want to go to that location, then that's up to you and she has to accept that you have politely declined.

AMumInScotland Thu 03-Apr-14 13:17:25

Maybe it's DH's turn to try explaining it to her? If you don't have any leave left, then you don't have any leave left. Has she never worked?

Objection Thu 03-Apr-14 13:59:58

YANBU perhaps tell a little white lie and say you've already booked something and you can't get more time off? She sounds like she's really excited though, don't feel too badly against her.

YABU to say that you can't keep the kids entertained in a field though! grin

mameulah Thu 03-Apr-14 14:08:35

If she is that annoying and you haven't even stayed in it yet then can you imagine how irritated she will be if/when you spill or ruin something in the camper van. Just keep saying no. I would rather stay at home than stay in someone else's accommodation, it would worry me that we ruined something.

lynniep Thu 03-Apr-14 14:10:51

she is excited yes, and I quite like her so I probably am trying to be overly diplomatic, and in doing so she isn't grasping what I'm saying. she did work yes, but as a teacher, so I guess the concept of * days a year is a bit alien to her. Dh is much fluffier than me with responding to stuff , and thats if I can even get him to speak to her, so its up to me to be more assertive. gah!

LittleprincessinGOLDrocks Thu 03-Apr-14 14:13:39

It sounds as though she is trying to be helpful tbh. She probably wants her side of the family to benefit from the free holidays as much possible.
Yes nagging you is not the way to go about it, so I think you should ask DH to have a chat with his mother and say that you have plans for this year, but will bear it in mind for next year. Don't burn any bridges though, as in years to come it may come in handy to have the option of a free get away.

dreamingbohemian Thu 03-Apr-14 14:16:49

I think she's being irritating, but I do think you're being a little bit unreasonable in not thinking about how it might sound to her. Unless you go at least halfway across France, you have no guarantee of having better weather, so that's not the best excuse. To say you want to go somewhere with more facilities sounds a bit insulting to their choice -- I'm sure it's more than just a field! And why wouldn't DH be able to take the DC on his own for a slightly long weekend?

Of course you shouldn't have to go on holiday somewhere you don't want to go, but it's actually a pretty amazing opportunity to have a free holiday home to use, so it's a bit surprising you're not trying to figure out some way of making use of it.

bobot Thu 03-Apr-14 17:58:36

Can see why you'd be annoyed by the nagging but think yab a bit u. She sounds excited and wants you to benefit from something lovely. We'd jump at the chance tbh.

Can understand that you've got no leave left and wanted to do something else with it - but if you're part time surely you could do a long weekend? I'm not sure why 3 or 4 hours is too far for a weekend? I've done twice that on the train with 3 under 5 by myself to visit friends for a weekend, it was exciting and lovely (admittedly, they were tired and grumpy on the journey back but in the car they'd probably just sleep?) - also, why wouldn't your dh go for a weekend without you if you have to work? I'd be delighted for mine to do this and let the children benefit even if I couldn't go.

I know people enjoy different kinds of holidays but I don't think kids need a lot of facilities, they just need their parents, and some outdoors? Personally i'd rather do that than travel to France but appreciate it's each to your own. It's going to sound v v bad to your MIL if you turn it down though, she'll probably be really disappointed for the children especially.

PerhapsNot Thu 03-Apr-14 18:30:27

I wouldn't bother getting involved, I would just get DH to deal with it.
I would say something along the lines of 'I don't really know what's happening, you better speak to DH about it' Repeat as often as needed.

Quoteunquote Thu 03-Apr-14 19:51:34

Send the husband and the children away for a week if you can't get time off, they will have fun and you get a sort of break.

missymayhemsmum Thu 03-Apr-14 22:15:09

My DM did this too- got persuaded into a timeshare kind of arrangement with discount weeks in an apartment in a holiday 'village' and needed to persuade us all to use it so she got her moneys worth. YANBU, have you tried 'what a pity, I don't have any leave left but it looks great and the kids would love to spend the summer holidays there with you'?

Backtobedlam Thu 03-Apr-14 22:21:30

Difficult one-is she so keen as they are planning to be there to, or would she let you and DH use it on your own?

lynniep Thu 03-Apr-14 22:51:59

they wouldn't be there too. its not big enough. and after the last (one and only family) disaster we will never go away with her again (nor she with us) its worth thinking about a long weekend during the summer though, although it depends on whether my boss would be amenable to me swapping days, and likewise whether the nursery would accept a day swap. I will talk to dh about that. mil would never have the kids. see comment about
last holiday disaster!

Rexandralpf Thu 03-Apr-14 23:54:43

Bank hol at caravan instead ?

takeiteasybuttakeit Fri 04-Apr-14 00:01:47

aw good luck OP, sounds tricky. we'd vaguely similar thing when pil bought a house miles from anywhere outside the UK, with really nothing for dcs that isn't literally a 50 mile drive. They get a bit shirty with us if we don't use it for our one holiday of the year..gets a bit unpleasant..
I imagine a long w/e is the way to go..

Worriedkat Fri 04-Apr-14 19:30:04

Same here. My inlaws have a retirement apartment in a 5* hotel in a European destination that retired wealthy baby boomers make a beeline for. I've checked out the website and it's about as anti child as you can get. Children to not be seen and not heard either. Inlaws just can't understand why we don't find £1500 that we don't have for flights and take our lovely loudly tantrumming young children. Apparently it has a small fenced off area of the pool that could be used by children hmm.

You haven't actually said no yet though. You've said you'll think about it, she's worried you'll get back to her with a date that had been subsequently taken. It's ok to say no nicely, it's your previous time not hers.

Worriedkat Fri 04-Apr-14 19:31:12

Precious time not previous smile

oddsocksmostly Fri 04-Apr-14 19:41:50

I second the PP who suggested your DH goes with the kids.

*Kids get special time with Dad.
* MIL happy.
* Doesn't touch your holiday allocation so you can have a family holiday at another time.

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