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What I Did On My Summer Vacation: Early Entrepreneurship in England

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Summer vacation looms large in a child’s life, pretty much no matter where you grow up or what your summer vacation looks like.

To celebrate the range of wonderful summer experiences out there, the Sassy Mama team will be sharing our own fond summer memories from childhoods spent on five different continents. Look out for a new summertime reflection from the Sassy Mama team every Friday through July and August, mamas! 

Click here to see the full list of summer vacation stories!

First up: Partnerships Manager George shows she has always had a knack for business, from her early days growing up in Oxfordshire, England.

Six weeks of freedom! When the local primary school in the village finished for summer, all the kids were so happy! (Not so sure about the parents, in retrospect.) We would all run down the hill with six weeks stretching ahead of us – it seemed like forever!

Most families went away for one week if they were lucky – otherwise it was a case of entertain yourselves, kids! With no iPads and kid-specific TV only on first thing in the morning, there was usually a whole seven hours of “self” entertaining to do! “Mum, I’m bored…”

Lucky for me, I lived in a very safe, quiet village in Oxfordshire and I would hang out with three other girls from my road. We came up with so many ingenious ideas to alleviate boredom and hopefully make us rich.

Mum never seemed to worry about us. In fact, the longer we were out of the house and occupied, the happier we all were!

Below are a few of the “businesses” we created. (By the way, none of them made us rich!) But they did provide tons of entertainment and laughs – isn’t that what summer holidays are all about?

Perfume Factory: Collect rose petals from every garden in the village, soak in water and then pour into glass bottles. Take them door-to-door trying to sell them!

Apple picking: Collect apples and other fruit from various trees in the village – then sell them (sometimes back to the unwitting people who had actually grown them!).

Dog walking: Take the dogs in the neighbourhood for various walks. (We also had the hideous idea of collecting dog poo and charging to clear people’s gardens – this business lasted 20 minutes, as none of us could face picking it all up!)

Jewellery making: Filo craft was big then. We’d make earrings and necklaces and bake them in the oven, fix on a clasp, then we had a stall at the village fete!

I love how these “entrepreneurial” ideas at such a young age helped me realise my future commercial vocation. Maybe “self” entertainment isn’t so bad after all!

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