Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Vacation Expectations

 Here we are at Metcalf Bottoms picnic area again.  This place is close to the entrance we usually used to get into the National Park (near Townsend). 
 Yep.......we squish into one picnic table :)
 So I was going to entertain you with my thoughts about vacation today. 
 He he he....I am pretty sure his thoughts are "God when you said this was going to be a crazy life.....I didn't think you meant this crazy"  ;). 

**Today he had a CT scan done of his right ear bones to check and see if there is an underlying reason of the "apparent" hearing loss that was tested.  Just to be sure really.  So we shall see?
 I think one really important thing about vacation is to NOT STRESS!!!!!!!!!!!! 
 As in plan ahead to a certain point so you avoid your opinions versus your hubby's or something, but really know what you like to do and do the things that are most important. 
 We LOVE HIKING!!!  The best times to hike are first thing in the morning.  As in be there ready to start the hike between 7am-8am.  Which meant some early mornings for us. 
 So we didn't get up really early every mornings.....we picked and planned as we went along 
 Some days we chose to sleep in and just picnic and do some little shops along the shopping, or eating out, or spending some down time at the cabin. 
 My hubby will tell you I stress sometimes about unrealistic expectations.  There will JUST BE those times when it does not go according to your plans.  Plain and simple won't happen the way you wanted.  Someone will throw a fit!
 Someone will get hurt. Someone will have a bad attitude all day. 
 The boys will play too rough.  The kids won't listen.  You will get tired. 
 That is the perfect time to do plan B- NOTHING AT ALL!!!!!!
 Now some people have this magical dream that all of their problems they had "at home" will be gone while they are on vacation.  Ummmm.......WILL NOT HAPPEN!!!!!!!!
 In fact if you are parenting a child with past traumas - it could get worse!!!!  YIKES!!! 
 There are things you can do to help them though- you can reassure them a LOT!  Tell them the dates you are leaving, the dates of your return, some of the plans while you are there, what you are doing each day- approximately, and try to not vary from your overall schedule too much.  As in you typically are not helping your children who need boundaries by sleeping in 2 extra hours and not having anything to do all day if they need structure. 
 We have some children that need structure.  Even if it is just - we will sleep in a bit, but then we will play ping pong for a bit, then pack for a picnic, then play in the stream, then go to the store, then play some board games, then come home, then eat.  Now I know I said you have to go with the flow, but there is at least a "sort of" schedule to help them realize what is happening. 
 Children need constant security from you!  They need to know their needs will be met.  We took snacks (remember I am the "bad" mommy that never does snacks at home) for every hike we took because we got up earlier than normal and we did more exercise than we normally do....and sometimes our lunches were later than normal as well.  So my kiddos KNEW that they would not have to go hungry!!!  We also carried bottled water (which being thrifty I just refilled) around EVERYWHERE!!!! 
 Those problems though- you know behavior issues, stages your babes are going through, and well life issues - DO NOT WAVE AWAY!  :)  So don't expect that to happen. 
 I think that is why we love going to National Parks so much because flexibility is pretty easy then.  If you don't do this hike this day- do it the next.  We can be back to the cabin in 1/2 hr most times if someone is having a complete melt down.  We can spend lots of time playing outside which I am serious when I say - DOES EVERYONE GOOD!!!!  (unless you have severe allergies)
 Although your vacay may not turn out like those dreamy pictures you see on can relax and have fun.  Or fall asleep in less than 2 minutes- like Joanna :)
 There are plenty of chances for extra cuddles.......
 Chill time together......
 Cooking- one of my hubby's fun things to do!!!
 Man I love it!!!  Have I ever shared that in England they graduate "high school" early....and he chose to go to college to do catering and management.  YEP!  YUMMY FOR US!!!!!!!!
 There is just time to enjoy.....
 Part of the point really.......
 I mean look at those eyes.....and have I mentioned I love hearing Joanna say "I want bubbalos"? 
 Because I do. 
 These times away with my family are etchings in my mind........times that I can see the crazy, but also see the great JOY!
 Sometimes it is a good thing to remember. 
A few sermon thoughts from when we were there.  We always go to the Church of the Cove- great little church in the Wears Valley area :).  The people are amazingly friendly and they LOVE ORPHANS!!!  In fact they are helping support an orphanage in Haiti and one of the "missions" team has recently brought back their new son.  LOVE!

Grumpy=Too Busy
Be a Samari Christian- willing to sit long hours to listen to God!
Get on your knees and face while praying- it brings a whole new perspective!
Practice the presence of GOD! 
GET ALONE WITH GOD- Be Still & Silent- so you can LISTEN TO HIM! 

Great tips for a closer walk with Christ!!!!  :)


  1. Looks like my kind of vacation!

  2. a crowded family and lots of children :)nice photos