Last month we took a nine day, eight night vacation. We went to Ann Arbor, Michigan, visited family just outside of Madison, Wisconsin and on the way home stopped in Elkhart, Indiana. We had so much fun! It was a lot of driving, which Lennon didn’t love. (But he must not have been too scarred because the kids have been playing “road trip” for the past two days which means I open all the doors in the van and they run around inside it and pretend to go to castles and zoos and such.) And if I was doing it again I’d maybe plan it just one day shorter, because by the last day we were just too tired to think of things to do. But honestly, it was one of the best times of my life.
My mom came with us. Besides enjoying her company, having her along is great because she takes constant pictures. I thought I’d post some… it’s so hard to pick, but I’ll try to limit myself.
My uncle and aunt have lived in Wisconsin for 14 years, so for half my life I’ve only gotten to see them once or twice a year when they come back this way. Though I’ve always loved them, I now feel closer to them than ever before. And I feel like my kids finally know them. I am so grateful for them for allowing us to stay with them for 4 days, they were great hosts. And the kids loved their dog, Gracie.
Besides having so much fun, being on vacation helped me to refocus my priorities. My kids have always been my top priority, but it’s so easy throughout the day to get sidetracked doing house work and work for the radio station. At the end of too many days I’ve forgotten to take the time to enjoy them. I’ve told them to wait far too often while I sent an email or folded laundry. Being on vacation I didn’t have those distractions. And since coming back I’ve become better at not giving into them.
Yes, my station work still needs to be done, and my house work does too. But I’ve learned that if I hang out with my kids when they want me too, they do eventually get sick of me. And I slip away when they’re playing together or independently without requesting me to join in. I actually get everything done quicker when I wait for them to allow me to do it. I’m not going back and forth between momming and working, and my mind is focused on my work not feeling guilty about the screaming child in the background.
Some days they want to play with me all day and those days the house only gets dirtier and I fall behind at my job. But sometime over the course of the next couple days, I catch up!
I hope I can keep this vacation mind set going. Right before vacation I also read two parenting books that I think helped me realize the need to live in the moment. (I think I’ll do another post soon with book recommendations. Both parenting books and books for pleasure.) The combination of these books and vacation was the medicine I needed. Now bring on summer, because this family is enjoying life to the fullest!!