Vacation detox. If you have ever traveled with children then you know, #thestruggleisreal.
We have been home from our lovely week at the beach for 2 days now and I am still trying to get my life back in order. (Read laundry and diffusing toddler tantrums).
First thing Monday morning when the boys woke up they wanted Memaw and the beach. And since I could deliver neither, a 45 minute tantrum ensued. Yes, they are sad there is no MeMaw or sand but really the tears are due to the lack of sleep from the past week and lack of any kind of schedule. Every time we travel I try to keep to naps and bedtime routines. And every time I fail miserably. And while in the midst of it I never care, when we get back home and my carefree vacation attitude catches up with me it’s always a different story.
I’m not mad about it. I am glad my family enjoyed an awesome vacation and I believe rules were meant to be broken every once in awhile. But it’s a very different thing when you forgo nap for extra time on the boat or sand castle building with MeMaw. It is quite another when you forgo nap due to being so past the point of tired that all you do is stand in your crib and scream at the top of your lungs and yell “No” over and over and over.
So just how do I get my kids to detox from our vacations? It is never easy, but I have a few things I try to stick to that make our transition a little better.
1} Sleep. That is always the first priority and we dive head first back into our sleep schedules. Make sure not to plan any evening activities and keep things relatively calm and low key in the late afternoon and evenings. Go back to your bedtime routines and stick with it. It may take a day or two of groans and whining but usually you can get back on track fairly quickly as long you are consistent.
2} Be present. Chances are you were a lot more involved with your kiddos on vacation than in your normal day to day. No jobs to go to or housework to worry and stress over. Due to your lack of schedules, your have more time to play and enjoy. Be mindful of that once you get back home. Try and cut out some special time for the kids each day to ease them back into their routines before diving back into the laundry and emails. Trust me, the laundry and emails will always be there.
3} Be positve. A lot of times when you get home from vacation it’s all “I miss this” and “I miss that” about the place you just left. Try and redirect your childs attention to the fun things they have at home that they didn’t have on vacation. A favorite toy or blanket or neighborhood friends. Say things like “isn’t it nice to be home with all your Thomas trains” and things that bring the positive feelings back to home.
4} Get Real. Seriously though, have realistic expectations on the adjustment period and getting back to life as normal. One of my favorite quotes is “Unrealistic expectations of the way is should be, prevent us from ever being happy with the way it is”. Cut yourself and the kiddos some slack.
And if all else fails and nothing is working then go ahead and pour yourself a fruit cocktail, turn on some ocean sounds and look at all the photos from your week of fun. You are gonna need it mama.