Can you have too much fun?

This morning I was ready to cancel the whole trip. Don’t worry, I’m pretty sure we won’t. But this morning I got a little reminder of what my kids are really like when they’re over-tired and overstimulated. Not just later that day but the day after and sometimes the day after that. I won’t go into detail – if you have kids you know exactly the kind of day I’m talking about. And if you don’t, well, you might still want to someday.

Yesterday was the celebration of the Swedish midsummer holiday. We spent the day outside enjoying beautiful weather at a community gathering. There was music, games for kids, traditional maypole dancing and lots and lots of sugar. A little slice of heaven for someone who’s soon-to-be 3. When we came home, we lacked the energy for the battle of the bathtub, but something had to be done about that wonderful paste that forms when one mixes sweat, sunscreen, dirt and candy. Backyard inflatable pool to the rescue! Add a little shampoo and everyone’s happy. Except now we’ve multiplied the tired. Recognizing the importance of getting some non-sugar-based food in her belly, we broke all the rules and let her pick her own dinner to be eaten while watching Elmo on the couch. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and microwave pizza, down the hatch. Start to finish, it was a little girl’s dream day.

Then this morning, the 3 year old version of a hangover. And really, it seems to happen every time we do something fun that’s outside of our normal routine, though to varying degrees. And somewhere in all the yelling and tears, the thought struck me today that we’re in the midst of planning 90 days of fun. Is this going to be too much fun?

We want to be very careful about setting a maintainable pace for our travels and experiences, but exactly what that is we’ll have to figure out by trial and (unfortunately) error. How will we handle discipline when she doesn’t have a room to go to when she needs to settle down? How will she react to an ever changing “normal”? Today, I’m feeling nervous about this trip more than excited.

I’ve started a new category of posts called “Before and After”. It will be a chance to write about how we anticipate certain things will be, both positive and negative, and then follow up on those things at the end of the trip. I hope that in a few months I will be writing about how well all of this worked out and how impressed I am with our kids.

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Family photo in front of the maypole 

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Tired kiddos in their backyard bath


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