Thursday, December 27, 2007

It's Good to be Home!

We've been home a few days now and all I can say is, "WOW!" Olivia's behavior has improved dramatically. She's sleeping 12-hours straight at night, taking really good naps and is, generally, just really happy and easily agreeable. She's been showering mommy and daddy with, "I love yous" and hugs.

We went down into Cascais today, walked around and had lunch. It's so nice to be home. I really do love it here. It's so beautiful and clean (aside from random dog poop on the streets).

I walked into a pottery store with pottery from a few different parts of Portugal. The prices were reasonable compared to the same quality of pottery I saw in Italy. I'm excited to go back without kids and pick out some serving platters, pitchers and, possibly, some dessert plates and decorative wall plates.

Olivia did a great job today compared to any day on our trip. She had gotten a great night's rest, and we got home right around nap time and she went right down. It gets me wondering. Olivia was, obviously, unhappy during most of our trip. We deprived her of proper sleep and while we brought books, her dolls and a few of her favorite DVD's to watch in the hotel room, took her on a few walks/hikes and let her run around, she was just miserable more often than not. So, my question is this: Is it reasonable to occasionally take trips of this kind with toddlers and put them through long days, late nights in places in which they could really care less about? Is it worth it for all involved? At what age does it make more sense to travel to ancient ruins, art museums, etc.,? I understand that every family and every child is different? But, do any of you have any thoughts? Experiences? Things that helped?

1 comment:

The Dunns said...

I had a horrible trip with the boys when Daniel was 2 and Mikey was 2 months. We had a bunch of things to pack into one short week including my brother's wedding and all the prep that went into it. Mikey was fine but Daniel only got naps in the car. By the end of the trip he was miserable (and we were too). It was a schedule of necessity but I would not want to try that again.

I say, when possible give yourself twice as much time as you would normally need so you can try to get naps and down time in. We will probably save big, memorable trips (Disneyland, Grand Canyon) for when all the boys are out of nap age and will actually remember it. With them as young as they are, it feels like it will be an eternity. But I have to remind myself that I will have a lot of time with them in just a few years when they are older.

At this age, trips are more for the parents than the kids. What is the earliest trip that you remember as a child? Some trips may be worth the agony of tired kids for you and Matt. After all, when will you be back in Portugal after this assignment? It won't permanently scar Olivia (but it might do you some damage!). ;)