If you read my post I came back to work so I can get some rest from earlier this week, you may remember that I took my kids to visit their great grandmother who lives about 3 hours away. As we were leaving she thanked us and said she knows it is hard to get up to visit. It's true. It is hard. I think a lot of it is the ages the kids are at right now, just shy of 2 and 4. Here is what my husband and I find difficult about away visits even though we do want to see everyone.

  • It gets the kids off their schedule. They can get too excited and miss their nap and in turn get cranky. They can also nap too long in the car and don't go to bed on time later that night.
  • It takes us several days to get them back on schedule when we get home. This is probably the biggest and hardest one.
  • We respect your possessions. Our house is totally kid proofed. We also are not buying anything new or nice until the kids are a bit older. So if something happens at our house it is not a huge deal. People who do not have small kids generally don't keep their house kid friendly, and really they shouldn't have to. But it it can make refereeing toddlers a challenge during a visit.
  • As parents we are "on" the entire visit. Away visits are not relaxing or restful for us. The kids are out of their element. We are working to keep your house in one piece and the kids decently behaved. Of course we do this at home too, but it is easier at home rather than a different or new place.
  • This one is selfish, I know. Sometimes at the end of a long work week it's hard to muster up that extra bit I need to pack and load and drive and herd the kids for a visit. This was especially true when I had a much longer commute through the week.
  • If it is an entire weekend visit, I go back to work not rested and the laundry is behind. I know this kind of piggy backs off the previous point, but it's true.
  • We have pets, That is just an extra level of complication whether you have kids or not. We do have two mini dachshunds to think about. Is whoever you are visiting okay with you bringing them? Will they stay home? Who will come and feed and water them? (Side note to dog lovers, check out What my our dachshunds taught me about parenting.)

I assume it'll get easy as they get older, but that's just me assuming. Parents with kids who are older than mine, does it get easier? Parents with kids around my age, do you have a hard time taking your kids on weekend or far away visits too?

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