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How to live the last day of the school holidays

So here it is. Six weeks — 1008 whole hours — boiled down to a single day and night of freedom. Where in sweet Jesus’s name did it go? One minute you are fully and openly signing yourself up to a duvet day, safe in the knowledge that time is on your side, the next frantically trying to cram two months of homework into two hours, while simultaneously binge-watching Master of None so you’ll be up to date when you go back to school.

You look forlornly back over your Instagram feed: what a lols you had. Now it’s your last day, and all you’ve got is the photo. Yet if all you’ve got lined up for the remaining hours is uploading grams with #throwbackthursday and #tmb attached to them, you’re doing your last day wrong.

Put down your phone (unless you’re reading this on it, obvs) and listen closely to the following tips.

Have a (daytime) party

Go big or go home, in your home, and get your mates round for one last blast in the garden before strapping yourself into your desk chair. Fire up the barbie, crack open some Diet Coke and put Beyoncé on repeat. You know that expression, live every day as if it was your last? Impossible, most of the time, naturally. But on the last day of holidays, the world is your oyster sauce marinade on chicken wings; your most outrageous summer dress; and Lemonade on repeat.

Invite the friends you won’t otherwise see at school

You’ll see all the others tomorrow.

Spend some time with the fam

If you can, and they’re not at work/at school already.

Get your sh*t done the day before

Your bag packed, your homework finished, your uniform ironed and your folder organised. Nothing, but nothing, ruins the last day like being up until midnight looking for your PE shorts.

Don’t get up too late

You need to prep your body clock for the full horror that will be waking up at half 6 the next day…

…but don’t get up too early

It IS your last lie in, after all.

Do some exercise

FUN exercise. Rope your mate into a game of tennis or football. Dance like the backpack kid in Katy Perry’s video. Plan an off-road bike ride. You’ll have a swell time (I know you’re horizontal right now, reading this through the cracks of your eyelids, but I promise you will) and it will make an hour of circuit training in PE more bearable the next day.

Take time over breakfast

Don’t skip it, and don’t settle for your usual cereal number. You’ll need this memory of avo and runny egg tomorrow when you’re shoving Shreddies down your throat.

Eat (at least) one of your favourite foods

It doesn’t have to be fancy — in fact the less fancy the better. Our end of holiday meal was always cheesy pasta with peas and sweetcorn, or fish pie with more butter than mashed potato. It was comfort food: neither particularly healthy, nor particularly crap. Make something if that’s what you’re into, but don’t feel you have to: we always finished with a shop-bought pudding, enter Gu chocolate pots. The most important thing is that you enjoy every last mouthful of it, and that you eat just enough to have to change into your PJ’s afterwards.

Paint your toenails

Paint your fingers too if you’re allowed, but certainly paint your toenails. Opt for a shade of orange so bright, it’s offensive, and take time to topcoat it so it survives the assault of repressive school shoes and black tights.

Wear as little as the weather and common decency will permit

Get the breeze while you still can. Uniform is stifling.

Do none of the above, and have a Harry Potter marathon (it’s possible to watch them all, we’ve done the maths)

19 hrs and 40 minutes. No regrets.

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