Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Vacation Nerves

In three days we are leaving on vacation. It is our first vacation as a family of six that takes us away from home for more than one night. It is our first vacation as a family of six that takes us more than one state away from home. In fact, we are leaving New England and traveling to Pennsylvania. I am more than a little nervous.

Megan is the only one of our children who has traveled any distance by car. When I was 5 months pregnant with Drew our little family drove to Toronto. That was 5 years ago. Drew thinks driving the 20 minutes to the mall is a "really long trip". The kids don't have very good car behavior; they're very loud all the time. I absolutely cannot tolerate loud noises in the car, even when I'm not driving. The girls can't reach each other from their car seats, but Meg and Drew get awfully handsy back in the third row. It's generally not pleasant, even for a short trip.

I'm excited for vacation. I'm excited to see something other than the four walls for my house and maybe even the sunshine. I'm excited to see friends. But I have big nerves about taking my kids in the car for 8 hours (or more) to an unfamiliar place and expecting them to have fun. I tend to have high expectations about how things are going to go, and of course they NEVER go the way I planned and I end up disappointed, frustrated and angry with myself and the kids.

We did buy two single strollers for the girls (matching of course, to eliminate fighting) instead of the double stroller. We did this partially to save space in the van and partially because the girls fight with each other in both of their double strollers. In the side by side Annie is always leaving over Izzie's side smacking her in the face, and in the front to back stroller the person in the back is ALWAYS kicking the one in the front and/or pulling her hair.

We let Meg and Drew write a list of the toys/books/stuffed friends they want to bring and are allowing them to pack their bags themselves. We're bringing our portable DVD player, two Ipods and snacks. Of course I'm bringing my camera! But there are butterflies in my stomach.

This vacation is our test. It's our test to see if the kids can behave well enough so that we could even contemplate taking them to Disney sooner rather than later. The big age difference between Meg and the twins makes me want to go sooner, so that they can all enjoy the same things, together. So yes, I have really high expectations. Maybe I should lower them and just go with the flow. Oh but I have such a hard time doing that.

Ok this rambling post needs to end. Keep your fingers crossed that we all come back in one piece.


Jill said...

If you can find a way to ease up your expectations, I think that would be best. Personally, I go in to situations like this expecting the worse... that way I'm never disappointed... or rarely. Have a great trip!!

Robyn said...

Being on vacation won't stop them from fighting or driving you crazy. BUT, you will be doing new and fun things and they will have moments where they are having a ball and being angels. Focus on those, not the bad ones.

Also, Disney's pretty magical. Bear has never behaved better in his LIFE than when we went. So, vacay in PA may not be the best test, although I know where you're coming from.

*****Can't wait to see you!!!!!

AndreAnna said...

Looking forward to seeing you next week.

And please, for the love of God woman, calm down.

Do they sell booze at Sesame Place?

Twin Tornados said...

I can relate to your stroller issues Kristin, the boys have already outgrown their stroller that they sit one in front and one in back, because as you said one gets kicked a lot, we just recently got a side by side and they seem to like it, they spend most of their time in it holding hands. im sure that will change with time. Have a great vacation!

Brooke Brown said...

Will be thinking of you! Don't be scared to pull off at every rest area and make the kids to wind sprints. :) Our boys loved the 15 minute distraction to find sticks, play tag, etc.. (and by 'loved it' I mean that at least 2 of them were having fun or at least expending some energy :). My friend Trish swears by kids books on tape/cd. She says her kids are mesmerized by them. I'm going to try that when we drive to FL soon.
Your stroller idea is great! We did that for disney and were surprised how many times it was nice b/c we were able to split up (take one stroller to the bathroom, take another to watch a ride).
Can't wait to see the pictures!!

Astarte said...

Good luck, and have a wonderful time!!!! Just take it easy and don't plan on doing too much in each day. It's hard, but if you can focus more on just being together rather than what you're supposed to be doing, it will be better. :)

Thia said...

I really hope things go well for you guys.